10 Years, 10 Days: Introducing the Most Dangerous Band in the World

Let’s kick off with a look at the guys in MCR, since they’re pretty vital to the whole operation. We’ll start with Mikey, because it’s his birthday today (thirty-one, for those of you who don’t have freakishly good memories for people’s birthdays and ages).

Mikey

Everyone knows Mikeyway as the ‘quiet’ member, but we all know that’s because Gerard didn’t used to let him speak. He does nowdays though, because G’s realised that he can’t look after a dude in his thirties, even if he is everyone’s little brother. With pretty awesome knees, Mikey made the poker face cool way before Lady Gaga and – wait for it – doesn’t actually have a thing for unicorns. He reminds us all to rock our glasses and has frequently put video links on his Twitter that have made my day. Like The Bangles’ Manic Monday.

Fun fact #1: he came up with My Chem’s name, but has never quite gotten the recognition he deserves for it. I was thinking some sort of knighthood?

Fun fact #2: you aren’t an MCR fan until you know the name of Gerard Way’s younger brother (I honestly think I saw this written by a fangirl once, I’ve never worked out if she was being serious or not).

Fun fact #3: he has, in his life, smiled.

Frank

  I was genuinely upset when I found out recently that Frank isn’t, as I was previously led to believe, five foot four. It was really nice thinking that there was a full-grown man as vertically stunted as me (I’m five one). Apparently he’s more normal-sized… Anyway, that’s irrelevant. Let’s find some fun facts.

#1: he’s, like, been on TV.

#2: his signature is almost completely incomprehensible, and you only realise it’s his via process of elimination.

 

 Frank’s usually the one who writes blog posts detailing line-up changes, poor dude. But without Frank, the live shows wouldn’t be nearly as interesting to watch… If he’s not kissing Gerard, he’s seriously injuring him.

Ray

  Ray doesn’t get as much fangirling as the rest of the band, because he’s not ‘sooo fucking prettttyyyy’, or whatever – but seriously, who cares? He masterminded #SINGItForJapan and his hair resembles a nuclear explosion even more than mine. He also never. Stops. Playing. Thus, he is a genius. Ray is an excellent example of why you should work really hard at something you care about: people will respect you for it. To everyone who’s ever said anything rude about his face: check out that smile when they played with Brian May. He can also cook, so he can come round mine any time.

Fun fact: he rarely washes his hair. I envy him.

Gerard

  How to describe Gerard Way? The voice of a generation? The Queen of Sass? A really good artist? A mix of them all, I think.  He’s the only frontman of a rock band I can think of that can get away with wearing a poncho onstage… And the only person who could ever sing for My Chemical Romance. Without his imagination, our lives would be empty of violent hair colours, epic lyrics and absurd concert singalongs.

Fun fact #1: he once had a gun held to his head.

#2: G and I use the same hair dye brand… He’s definitely making money with this music deal, that shit’s expensive.

The Touring Keyboard Dude (James Dewees)

My main memory of seeing Dewees play when I first saw the band last October was that he was completely mad for wearing a jumper. I can’t remember if he took it off partway through the set, but after one song I was drenched in sweat. Looking over at him, and noticing layers, I decided he hadn’t yet recovered from jet lag. However, when someone had the bright idea to give James a Twitter, @shitdeweessays, I realised that in actual fact he’s one of those dudes who says and does inexplicable things for inexplicable reasons – and as a result is hilarious. Without him, we would not have any piano-based live music… so Black Parade would be in trouble and there wouldn’t be any awesome interludes. His other musical work includes Reggie and the Full Effect and LeATHERMØUTH.

The Previous Drummers

Matt Pelissier: the guy whose name no one can pronounce. He left before my time as a fan, all I know is that he had a beardy thing going on (it’s a trend with My Chem’s drummers, I think) and they call him ‘Otter’. It’s rumoured he’s now a mechanic… It’s also rumoured he set the van on fire and that’s why he’s no longer a member – so do some checking if you ever come across him in the Yellow Pages.

Bob Bryar: in the five years Bob drummed with the band, we got to know what my nan would most likely call a ‘proper bloke’. He played through burnt legs and screwy wrists, loved his dog and put up with Frank’s abuse. If the rumour that he’s now a tech for LMFAO is true, I hope he’s very happy shufflin’.

Michael Pedicone: my first My Chem show was his first My Chem show. His last, thankfully, wasn’t mine. My initial reaction about his departure was “Well, shit. I liked him.” I really did. He seemed like a nice guy. Too bad he’s also an idiot who’s messed up his entire life.

Fun fact: during Life on the Murder Scene, when the camera’s annoying Bob, someone turns it around and you get a face full of Pedicone. Oh, the irony.

So there you have it. The most dangerous band in the world… a group of normal men with extraordinary talent… and some really distinctive names.

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One Chapter Ends and Another Begins… Or Maybe a Whole New Book.

  This week I posted my centenary blog and today it has been exactly one year since this. And this.

  I still remember how the pit of my stomach fell twenty floors when I read that… How could they do this to us? The MCRmy is a family and FAMILIES TELL EACH OTHER STUFF. I was so freaked out I think I punched a tree. I was so distracted by the thought of my favourite band ending before I’d even got to see them live that I forgot to be nervous for my first GCSE module. One year on, MCR have definitely not broken up. I have seen them live twice and, because everything comes full circle, had another module this morning.

  Looking back on it, I wasn’t just upset because Bob had left and they didn’t tell us (though that was part of their lives more directly than ours and they had – still have – the right to privacy). I was freaking out because I thought one of the only constants in my life was kaput. I’m pretty cynical when it comes to pretty much everything so I don’t trust an awful lot of people. I had put my trust in My Chem, and where the hell had it got me? A sore fist and some battered CDs.

  Since last March, the band has made a comeback that is, quite frankly, way cooler than Take That’s first show with Robbie in fifteen years. Their music has taken a slightly different direction, their hair colour has swapped ends of the spectrum and you are now expected to bring rayguns to shows. Danger Days has changed the way My Chemical Romance are portrayed, again.

 

 

  Thinking back to 23rd October and 12th February, two of the best days of my life because I got to see them live with some of the people who I love most in the world, I don’t think they would have happened if My Chem ended with Bob’s departure. We had to wait four years and deal with the fallout of the fourth-album-that-never-was-but-someday-could-be in order to get Danger Days. Looking at those pictures of the band over the last nine and-a-half years, some aspects of the band have never changed. Their determination to make art as different to their previous work as possible and their passion for what they do, for example.

  Which is why I’m making an effort to tell you this exactly one year on: sometimes you have to be patient and ride out the storm. Sometimes something you think will last forever will kind of crash and burn while you watch. Sometimes, when you look back, that’s the best thing that could possibly have happened. In retrospect, I could have said things or treated people differently over the last twelve months and then maybe some of the stuff I’ve had to deal with wouldn’t have been so difficult… I will bet my My-Chem-commemorating ring you could have too.

  But hey. Sit something out and perhaps it’ll turn into the most brilliant thing that’s ever happened.

Music Teaches People… I Know What the American National Anthem Sounds Like.

  The steady hum of my laptop ripping Danger Days is incredibly comforting. Almost as much as listening to it in bed at six in the morning is…

  I have a cold, okay, and it’s my alarm.

  There’s no point in reviewing the album, because a) most people reading this already have and love it, and b) everyone else in the universe did when it went on YouTube. Instead, I have some questions for the band:

  • What’s up with the titchy lyrics in the booklet? I have to hold it up to the light when I want to check I’m not mishearing Gerard’s screaming.
  • Is the case supposed to break within a day of owning it? Actually, its record is better than Bullets’, that one fell apart ten minutes after I bought it.
  • Does Bob get royalties for the songs he’s credited as writing?
  • Who decided to sell it for ten quid starting price? Not that anyone’s complaining or anything. Only this is the first time I’ve ever paid full price for a CD and I was pleasantly surprised that it wasn’t £15.99.
  • Can you translate the Japanese on Party Poison for us uneducated people who can only speak English? Please?!

  You know, I remember when Party Poison was called Death Before Disco, when it got put on the Internet after MCR’s shows at The Roxy. I’d try to make that sound all sentimental, but it was summer 2009…

  I also don’t get to reminisce about being one of the 5000 people at the Hammersmith Apollo to hear Planetary (GO!) before everyone else, because it was only a month ago.

  Can I gloat about the irony of wearing a t-shirt that says ‘I ♥ Steve, Righ?’ to the show instead?

 

                                                                               

This Is Probably the Only Blog Post You’ll Ever Read Linking My Chemical Romance and the 1947 Polish Elections

  It’s become something of tradition, I think, to blog around this week every year. Not because I lost someone on 9/11. I was only five years and three hundred and sixty-four days old when it happened, after all… Most people my age probably can’t even remember it. I know a girl at my school who thinks Osama Bin Laden is a member of the Beatles.

Osama bin Laden cartoon

Not because it’s Mikey Way’s thirtieth birthday today either.

  Or that it’s nearly nine years since a depressed twenty-something artist on his way to work saw the aforementioned disaster and formed a brilliant rock band with his aforementioned brother.

  But because, despite all the odds, I have survived another year. Amazing, innit? I haven’t been run over by a bus, set myself on fire during a Chemistry IAA, contracted cancer, crashed a car, slit one vein too many, been assassinated or fallen over attempting a roundhouse kick, cracking my head open on the dojo floor.

  I’m prepared to bet a few of you have considered killing me, setting me on fire or chucking me on the dojo floor. Thank you for refraining. You know that theory Charles Darwin came up with, the survival of the fittest? That if you’re unable to hunt or climb trees or run really fast from whatever’s trying to eat you, you’ll get cast out of the pack and eaten.

  I kind of cheated with the ‘survival’ part of the saying. It’s not my fault, okay? I didn’t ask to get born eleven weeks early. It just happened. I didn’t ask for Rochford and Southend hospitals to stick pipes in my side and kick-start my respiratory system either, but I’m grateful to whoever signed the pipe-insertion contract.

  Every year I reflect on the shithole that is September 11th and the excellence of My Chem, and wonder how something so good could be born out of something so bad. If 9/11 hadn’t happened, would MCR be doing what they do? I like to think that terrorist attacks notwithstanding, yeah.

  Let’s face it, Gerard wouldn’t have done art for the Cartoon Network forever, Ray was going to pick up the guitar again at some point, Mikey had to get over his stage fright one way or another and Frank… Well, Frank is one of those insane blokes who sort of manages to kill demon sharks wherever the van takes him.

       

  Same with Darwin’s theory of evolution. If I’d been born circa 1950, I’d be in a shoebox sized grave right now next to my mum, and Maxim would be an unexistent annoying little brother. But I was born in the nineties, dude, and there’s no point having a pretty comfortable privileged life and not doing anything but surfing Twitter. So regardless of my serious hatred of birthday celebrations and all the grief that accompanies it, I’m rather looking forward to Sunday.

  It ain’t over till the fat lady sings, according to the proverb. Well, it ain’t over till I say it’s over, so anyone still going on about medical science not being a good idea can go the same way as the homophobes and Qur’an burners. Down the fucking drain.

  When the USSR rigged the Polish vote in 1947 to ensure it became communist, Stalin wasn’t worried about cheating. He was worried that Germany might kill more Russians if there was another war, and he wanted Poland to protect them. I don’t like Labour, but Moustache Dictator Guy Two had the right idea.

This is a Conversation You Won’t Want to Read Unless You Have Visited MCR.com Lately. read from bottom up.

To: Frank

From: Lizzi

Good.
 
I’m getting more and more pissed by the second. I’m seriously disappointed in those guys.
 
I expected them to value our intelligence more.
 
Well, I’ll just carry on imagining you breaking their sexy italian jaws.
 
Mnn….sexy italian jaws…
 
And ripping off their trousers…
 
And breaking their jaws…

 


From:Frank

 

To: Lizzi
Then it is not the apocalypse. We have hope in the gits who saved our lives and taught us to headbang.
 
Whoever replaces Bob is going to have a hard act to follow, that’s all I can think of. Those tossbags.
 
Anyway, go and read my blog in ten minutes’ time. This’ll be on it.

From: Lizzi

To: Frank

I’m sure I love them deep down. 
 
Somewhere.
 
But now all I am feeling is disgust.
 
Ima keep Bob’s face on all of my posters, no matter how tempting it is to scrub them all of, and will do the same as you. Except maybe with that pair of sunglasses that I saw last week….
 


From: Frank

To: Lizzi

I’ma go shove this whole conversation on my blog (which I updated last week by the way :P) and buy a ring to commemorate MCR in town on Saturday.
 
Because being a My Chem fan is like being in a relationship; you gotta trust the arsehole who’s shirt you secretly want to take off, even though they do STUPID and SELF-ABUSIVE and DOWNRIGHT INCOMPREHENSIBLE things like what they just threw at us.
 


From: Lizzi

To: Frank

I am wetting myself. Seriously.
 
I am loving the sexy-italian-jawline-getting-broken-by-Frank’s-fist image.
 
I think we should add in my long-winded conspiracy theory. Followed by ‘but we’re not ones to pass judgement.’ and then the ‘i’ll break your jaws.’ followed by the ‘I am losing faith and I’ve got GCSE’s’ guilt-trip.

 
We are genius.


From: Frank

To: Lizzi

Dear My Chem:
 
I don’t give a crap what goes on in your band. I don’t care if you’ve got flu, or an STD, or if you dyed your hair or if Bandit said her first word.
 
But you owe it to Bob, yourselves and the thousands of people who love you to do more than just drop shit on us out of the blue. Blog more often, if freaking anything. Just TELL US WHY BOB LEFT, HOW GERARD’S VOICE IS, ANY GODDAMN THING ABOUT THE NEW ALBUM. WE DON’T CARE, WE JUST DON’T WANT TO RELY ON KERRANG! FOR NEWS.
 
If you lock us out any more, your sexy Italian jawlines will get broken by my fist. Okay?


From: Lizzi

To: Frank

This is shit.
 
You know what this sounds like?
 
It sounds like you waited until you had finished the album and had no use for Bob until you kicked him out.
It sounds like Gerard’s voice is fine and you were just using it as an excuse not to perform ‘cos you don’t have a drummer.
 
Long-winded conspiracy theory, yes, I know, but I reckon you’re capable of it. I’ve got GCSE modules tomorrow and I’m paranoid and stressed and losing faith.
 
Thanks guys.
 
x