I Had an MCR Listening Party, Come Join Me

Frank Iero fuck off gif

This evening I posted on social media about MCR, which is not unusual, but I guess listening to MCR is becoming less and less everyday for me. This is partly because I have a couple of jobs that require a communal radio and/or relative silence and partly because there are other demands on my ears these days. Troye Sivan. Lorde. The sound of my conscience as it reminds me I haven’t worked on that giant writing project I want to finish drafting by spring. But My Chemical Romance is My Chemical Romance and the world is better with My Chemical Romance in it, so as I wrote this I had a little listening party at my desk. And as a My Chem listening party is a rock ‘n’ roll Wednesday night pursuit, I thought I’d make it into a helpful step-by-step guide so you too can mosh on a weekday!

Step 1: Compile MCR’s discography into Random.org

Hit ‘randomise’!

Step 2: Pick the first 5 songs that appear

  • “Vampires Will Never Hurt You”
  • “The End.”
  • “Sing”
  • “Mama” (featuring Liza Minnelli)
  • “It’s Not a Fashion Statement, It’s a Deathwish” (listed as “It’s Not a Fashion Statement, It’s a Fucking Deathwish” in the album liner notes)

Step 3: Youtube that shit, even though you have every song legally on a disc somewhere

Vampires Will Never Hurt You

Until I looked for the official Eyeball Records video and couldn’t find it, I hadn’t realised I’d never sat through the entire video for Vampires (although I think I have it on about 3 DVDs, so). Anyway it is here it is courtesy of some kindly soul:

I had never considered what Ray Toro might look like with no hair, and I am discomfited to realise he looks exactly like Ray Toro, except if Ray Toro was in a choir. Frank, man, I am so glad you got rid of those dreads. You remind me of the stoner kids I see in Southend. The Way brothers are, of course, changeless. Musically I have never had a clue what Vampires is about other than vampires – death? Rebirth? Betrayal? Time running out? – but I feel a short story coming on. Also I have a feeling the ‘like ghosts in the snow bit’ is gonna be way more fun if I do this exercise again after a couple of drinks.

The End

Fortunately when I entered the discography into Random.org, I included the track numbers. The End in this case was Track 1, thus the first song on The Black Parade, not to be confused with To The End, track three on Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge. Easy mistake to make though, and I have made it approximately 8000 times in my 11 years as an MCR fan.

Fun fact: the first time I heard this was on an iPod shuffle (look it was 11 years ago) and when it ended abruptly I thought I’d hit a button and went back to play it again. I still love the bleep-bleep-bleep intro, and harbour a dream that if I’m ever unlucky enough to be on a heart monitor, I’ll just think it’s an MCR song and sit back happily while doctors panic over the rate of the bleeps. I also feel fond of the line ‘when I grow up I want to be nothing at all’ because in my old age that has become a comforting thought.

SING

The song that inspired the name for The Webways. The song that infuriated that FOX News man. The pop song that’s kind of a punk song?

Other than the greatly improved haircuts, my favourite thing about this video is the number of Mindless Self Indulgence members who make an appearance. I’d forgotten how rich the storytelling is: the wall projections, the posters, the freedom-fighters-versus-the-powerful narrative. It’s kind of ironic that Danger Days was set in 2019 – nuclear war and brightly coloured kids protesting the government was kind of novel in 2010. Now it’s the news.

Mama

No one in the universe is currently making music as interesting as this song. That is all.

It’s Not a Fashion Statement, It’s a Fucking Deathwish

When I was 16 I did an intricate art project in which I worked MCR lyrics from every song into a giant ‘MCR’. With boarder. I did not photograph it well; the end result did not reflect the work I put in. The lyric I chose for Deathwish was ‘you get what everyone else gets/you get a lifetime’ as those lines are as close as I have come to finding a mantra to live by. How can I feel spiritually enlightened by a song that also makes me want to throw red paint at a church altar?

Ugh, to be 16 again and have the time for leisurely listens and fansites. I love the new music I listen to now, but 5 years ago I did not go near pop because pop was not substantial. MCR was substantial. These days I feel like pop might be one of the only substantial things around. I read an entire article the other day about how Hayley Kiyoko and Troye Sivan kinda-sorta made queer/pop history by releasing their videos on the same day. No one had previously normalised same sex attraction in such a way, apparently (I can hear George Michael’s ghost rolling his eyes though). MCR broke new ground every time they released an album, because every album took what was expected of them and rolled it on its head… I don’t really get those vibes from rock any more, but maybe that’s because I stopped reading Kerrang! when they started comparing MCR’s drummer situation to that of Spinal Tap’s. Or maybe I have responsibilities now and need soft lil pop sounds to ease me into my mid-twenties. Who knows. I might weave some MCR into that project I’m working on. I might spend my next wages on an overpriced MCR shirt. I might go to California in 2019.

Probably can’t afford the shirt and the plane ticket though, ha.

My Thursday is doing well. How is yours?

Today I made five phone calls. Okay, four. Okay, three. Okay, I can’t remember. It felt like five. I also bought insurance for an upcoming event I’m too superstitious to talk about until it’s confirmed and asked my bank for a better deal on their business rates (it turns out that asking them to consider not charging you money in exchange for services doesn’t get you far, but you’ll never know if you don’t ask, so…). What I’m saying is, I adulted today. So I am basically this in a human form:

Admit it, I just made your evening. I have to go and be smug now, so feel free to blast Stayin’ Alive as loud as you can and bask in my glory.

Five phone calls!

Please let me know your favouring adulting memories, and your favourite smug songs. I want to make a playlist for future smug times.

(too long for Twitter)

I didn’t particularly grow up with David Bowie, or I didn’t think I did until this morning when I got thinking about how most of the music I have grown up with was influenced by him more than virtually any other artist or musician. Thank you for teaching us art and fearlessness, thank you for all the times I played Heroes really loud at the end of Perks of Being a Wallflower, and thank you for all the times I turned the radio up. I think I might make some art today.

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RIP, David Bowie ⚡️

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Video of the Week: Take Me to Church

I am superduper busy with work at the moment (a big piece to finish, a smaller-yet-enormous piece and even more research to do for both of them) but I wanted to share this with you real quick.

I flicked on the music channel(s) at lunch just now, because the alternative was dissecting the BBC’s interview with President Assad, and I came in just after this video started. Usually mainstream music videos are either a) okay or b) MCR, but I stopped in my metaphorical tracks to watch this. I’ve rewatched it on YouTube, because I figured I hadn’t seen enough to understand the story, but I still don’t understand the story even though I’ve been jamming along to this on the radio for weeks and thought I had a pretty good grasp of the lyrics.

I have to get back to business now, but if anyone knows if there’s a sequel and/or prequel and/or in-depth interview with the screenwriter, let me know. Did I miss what was in the box? I’m going to watch it again to check.

George GIFs and G. Way’s Festival Listing

Darlings,

Half term has flown by, which is weird because I am technically no longer at school. Except I have seven exams to do before I don’t actually have to go back, so I feel like I’m in stasis.

From georgeslays.tumblr.com
From georgeslays.tumblr.com

Speaking of ‘my people’… I’ve opened up a Society6 shop, as you can tell from that wonderful imposing link in the sidebar. There’s only fan art up at the moment but I’ve been sketching some ideas and a new life goal is to create a collection of coffee mugs. The big difference between Society6 and Etsy is that Society6 prints everything and delivers it to you from the USA, as opposed to me printing it and sending it from a post office in Essex. Both give me the same amount of profit though – of the $15 Society6 charges for a mini print of something pretty, I get $2.42, which Google tells me is about a quarter of the price of a cinema ticket.

Actually I’m lying. I set the price for basic prints and I started at $15 because the site’s base price is $12. Still, it means I don’t have to physically print and post everything – although of course I will if you buy on Etsy. Ah, artwork and the things people do for promotion.

Speaking of promotion, why is Gerard’s name half way down the Reading and Leeds poster? Does nobody remember last time? Maybe they remember the time before… Whatever. My new new life goal is to see G at Reading. One ticket is the equivalent of 75 mini posters, assuming the exchange rate doesn’t change…go on, snowflakes. I’ll live blog the whole experience!

Okayfine. I’ll live blog the BBC Three stream, assuming it’s still going then.

Moving Image Appreciation Post #6

All we need is YouTube, ladies and gents. That’s it. Ever.

The Chainsmokers – #SELFIE PARODY (by The Midnight Beast)

If I ever get bored by The Midnight Beast, please quietly remind me of this video. Is it a parody of another song? I usually can’t tell (and I think I’m in these guys’ demographic, haha)…

Dumb Ways to Die

Maxim showed me this and I think it might have been a big deal a couple of years ago? 

Woa. Plot twist. I have a feeling that this is like Canvas Bags in that I will hum it whenever I’m near a train.

Axis of Awesome – What Would Jesus Do?

This one counts as Religious Studies revision.

Last but not least…

10 Chick Flick cliches you will NOT see in He’s Just Not That Into You

Watching this is now on my “shit to do in summer” list. Someone on Tumblr noted that at no point do any of the guys pretend to be women, the realisation of which makes watching the whole thing a second time twice as joyous.

‘Fake Your Death’ and Very Little Else

So here we are.

Seven years and a handful of months after my first accidental hearing of Welcome to the Black Parade on a now-defunct local radio show, Zane Lowe’s programme played the last ever new MCR song.

Ever.

Ever.

It’s one of their best.

It might actually be their best (unless sentimentality’s talking, which it definitely is).

Out now on the Internet. Part of May Death Never Stop You, out 25th March and available to pre-order on the Internet.

Still the best band in the world.

Titling This Took Three Times Longer than Writing It So Please Just Read and Put Us Both Out of Our Misery

I’ve not got the energy to devote another news post to The Media Versus Sherlock, but you guys really need to read this. 1) Everyone satirises politicians 2) Everyone satirises – or dramatises – the Murdoch empire (see Reichenbach for more tabloid fun!) 3) Journalists need to quit using popular culture as an excuse to spew their political ideas. It’s okay to just say things… 4) Sorry but Sherlock can’t even identify the Queen let alone a ballot box 5) “Take his drug of choice: cocaine. Hedonistic, vacuous, self-important and delusional. And still as beloved by the well-connected of today as it was by them back then.” Is it just me or do all those adjectives describe the press?

Ah, television.

I was revising the Transmissions page earlier and noticed that I’ve not mentioned MCR’s endeavours for a while. Ah, television. But, their greatest hits are available to pre-order next week! Let’s play guess the tracklist! I’d like:

Your turn…