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Show Review: Fall Out Boy sprinkles some stardust on special night in Arizona

Fall Out Boy’s colossal 2023 rages on as the band paid a visit to a sweaty (nearly) sold out Talking Stick Resort Amphitheatre on Friday. The So Much For (Tour) Dust lineup included Royal & the Serpent and while direct support act Bring Me the Horizon had to cancel last minute, the show must and did go on.

Royal & the Serpent graduated from clubs to stadiums and amphitheaters this summer and the trio turned the massive stage into a space they could work with. Singer Ryan Santiago kept the pit moving to “I Can’t Get High” and “One Nation Underdogs”- in her words, the new National Anthem, but make it gay. The kids held on to every word while older fans in the crowd bobbed along appreciatively to the set’s closer, “Overwhelmed”.

The curtain came down on Fall Out Boy’s elaborate stage architecture and pops of fireworks signaled the band’s entrance to the soaring first single from their latest album to open the set. Their artistic vision was front and center through both the music and the production- a sonic and visual feast for the senses. Their weird and wild sides came out to play as the backdrop changed from a field of jellyfish to an animatronic dog’s head to a wise and vaguely sinister tree built behind them as they performed.

An already sweltering night got even hotter with the addition of blinding pyrotechnics during “The Phoenix” and “Chicago is So Two Years Ago”. Anyone still sitting rose to their feet for the national anthem- “Grand Theft Autumn/Where is Your Boy”, that is. The Fall Out Boy of today is stronger than ever and their 20 years of tracks to pick from ensured that fans of every age had something to sing along to. 

The setlist was hit after hit- songs from critically panned but fan-beloved Folie à Deux garnered huge cheers before the perfect segue into “Fake Out”. Singer Patrick Stump then took a breather to tickle the ivories and tell little anecdotes before dropping jaws with a soft piano version of his seldom-heard solo song “Spotlight (Oh Nostalgia)”. 

This is the Fall Out Boy eras tour and Arizona took a journey down the rabbit hole of the band’s discography. Like Taylor Swift, each night has had fans on the edge of their seats waiting for the Magic 8 ball section of the setlist- surprise songs pulled from the deepest cuts of their plethora of albums. Friday took us back to 2005 when we were all “Homesick at Space Camp”. 

Naturally all the hits had their time to shine and FOB would never leave the stage without including “Dance, Dance”, “Sugar, We’re Goin’ Down” and “Thnks Fr Th Mmrs”. It’s the tracks in between these hits, however, that made the setlist so special and prove the absolute staying power of this scrappy Chicago band.

The wall of fire returned for an encore of “Centuries” and of course, Pete Wentz’s iconic crowd jump to perma-closer “Saturday”. Capturing the joy, sweat and tears of this incredible night was a mammoth task, but we hope these photos do the trick- and encourage anyone on the fence to head to the gig, it’s a night you won’t forget.

Check out all the photos!

Story and photos by Olivia Khiel