BLACK DRAGON FIGHTING SOCIETY:
The most head-swiveling 1-2-fuck you, live-in-the-studio moment in the entire MCR catalog, this song is 98 seconds of over-caffeinated, overmodulated, downstroked frenzy, replete with toy ray guns and a guitar battle royale between Frank Iero, Ray Toro and Gerard. “It kind of reminds me of one my favorite songs, ‘Heart Attack Man’ from the Beastie Boys’ ‘III Communication.’ There’s about two hours of production on it, yet it still sounds like My Chemical Romance.”
THE ONLY HOPE FOR ME IS YOU:
A cousin to ‘Famous Last Words’ (the most optimistic cut from ‘The Black Parade’), this song encapsulates the band’s knack for both the anthemic and the melodic. “‘Famous Last Words’ was very direct in the choruses. This one is even more direct. For me, it’s looking at the beginning of my life-which is, for me, 9/11. It’s about a lot of things, like bringing a child into the world and being worried that there’s going to be something lousy [your child] is going to have to live through.”
SAVE YOURSELF, I’LL HOLD THEM BACK:
“I kept referencing ‘Living After Midnight’ by Judas Priest. The verses were Judas Priest, the choruses were Bon Jovi with a little bit of ‘Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge’ thrown in. I wanted it to kind of be a leather-metal song. That song is about the importance of a believe over a victim.”
(This one sounds AMAZING…they all do. But I’m incredibly excited for this one.)
This song-seemingly influenced by the Midwest crime drama “Badlands” and the modern sci-fi classic “Blade Runner”-sounds like the kind of thing coming out at top volume of a rusted-out, primer-coated, um, Trans Am. “Violence and automobiles are such a huge part of the American mythology.
A chapter of My Chem mythology committed to song, this Britpop-sounding rocker is centered on the legendary story of the band getting a bottle of urine thrown at them at the Reading Festival in the U.K.-from the thrower’s point of view.
HAIL TO THE KING:
My Chemical Zeppelin, anyone? This song-formerly tagged “L.A. Heavy”-sounds like Queens Of The Stone Age manning a fleet of 1986 Monte Carlos and taking over a small town with an army of fist-pumping kids in leather vests and ratty jeans. “It’s all about playing a rock show with a who-gives-a-shit-what-the-song-means type of thing.”
THE LIGHT BEHIND YOUR EYES:
An atmospheric track that wouldn’t sound out of place on a playlist between the Church and Talk Talk. According to Gerard, the band were going for a late-period Pink Floyd vibe, ca. The Division Bell. “We really went for something cinematic with it. Sort of like the sunset before the gunfight.
DEATH BEFORE DISCO:
Described as an “anti-party party song” (and one of the first tracks the band wrote prior to their Japan trip), this rave-up was directly inspired by the original Detroit punks, the Stooges and MC5. The band actually got to play it for MC5 guitarist Wayne Kramer when they met him during one of his Jail Guitar Doors charity initiatives.
For close to a decade, My Chemical Romance spent their lives as scrappy kids thrashing in basements, unwilling poster boys for Generation Warped and classic-rock revivalists ‘saving’ disenfranchised young people all over the globe. As they ready their fourth album, they’re doing something even more daring: becoming a rock band.