Fall Out Boy: Andrew Hurley, Pete Wentz, Patrick Stump, Joe Trohman.
Personnel: Lindsay Blaufarb, Sophie Toufa, Butch Walker (vocals); Ryan Ross, Chad Gilbert (guitar); Kenneth Edmonds (mandolin); Ken Wiley (French horn); Nick Lane (bass trombone).
Audio Mixers: Neal Avron; George Gumbs; Tom Lord-Alge.
Recording information: Brandon's Way, Hollywood, CA (09/2006-10/2006); Chung King, New York, NY (09/2006-10/2006); The Pass Studios, Los Angeles, CA (09/2006-10/2006).
Illustrator: Chuck Anderson.
Introduction by: Jay-Z.
Photographer: Pamela Littky.
Like My Chemical Romance, the wildly popular emo band Fall Out Boy opted to follow its breakthrough record (in this case, 2005's FROM UNDER THE CORK TREE) with a highly ambitious outing. Although it doesn't quite aspire to the concept-album grandeur of the aforementioned group's BLACK PARADE, 2007's INFINITY ON HIGH showcases a wider musical palette for FOB, which is immediately apparent on the disc's bold first single, "This Ain't a Scene, It's an Arms Race," a dynamic track that mixes a jaunty R&B-tinged melody with the ensemble's signature guitar-fueled energy. Even songs that hew closer to Fall Out Boy's punk-pop template bristle with restless creativity, as on the surging "Carpal Tunnel of Love," which finds frontman Patrick Stump nailing an unexpected soaring falsetto during the remarkably catchy chorus. While INFINITY ON HIGH might rattle fans of the Illinois-based band's less glossy, more direct earlier material, the album is a fitting progression for the earnest group, and stands as an intriguing response to the glare of the mainstream spotlight.
Rolling Stone (p.65) - 3.5 stars out of 5 -- "'This Ain't a Scene' is a bold single, complete with sampled drums and a Nineties R&B hook
Rolling Stone (p.116) - Included in Rolling Stone's "50 Top Albums of the Year 2007" -- "Giant pop-rock songs with confectionery choruses..."
Spin (p.81) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "The band's brawny emo riffs and sugary hooks are still evident on songs like 'Hum Hallelujah,' but Wentz and Co. have beefed up their sound considerably..."
Entertainment Weekly (p.71) - "FOB's guitars still blare, and Stump has evolved into a superb frontman, with a voice that slides supplely from a bratty punk bark into a honeyed falsetto." -- Grade: A-
Q (p.108) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "Gleaming with instant hooks, this is a uniformly radio-friendly album. It's also a hugely addictive and likeable one"
Uncut (p.79) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "[I]t all adds up to a brave endeavour."
Alternative Press (p.133) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "Lyricist Pete Wentz breaks out of his usual first-person perspective without sacrificing any insight or honesty, and singer Patrick Stump delivers some of the band's most gut-wrenching and powerful melodies to date."
Kerrang (Magazine) (p.47) - "[H]ere the musical brain behind the band gets to use the studio as his personal playroom, polishing and buffing the band's sound until it shines brightly enough for mainstream magpies."
Kerrang (Magazine) (p.70) - Ranked #10 in Kerrang's "The Top 20 Albums Of 2007" -- "[T]his album will be a staple of radio rock playlists for years to come."
Q (Magazine) (p.74) - Ranked #38 in Q's "The 50 Best Albums Of 2007" -- "[A] bold, gleaming pop album."