Saturday, 23 March 2013

So long and goodnight.

As with a few other bloggers, I was hesitant to write this post today. I daren't venture to Tumblr and see the teenage angst pour out in front of my eyes. But as MCR were such a massive part of my life, and still are, I couldn't ignore it.

Back in my first year at secondary school, age 11. I'd been listening to things like KISS and Ozzy Osbourne when I was younger, but nothing that appealed to my feeling of being lost in a world that didn't quite understand me. Then two of my closest friends introduced me to a band who were just about to release an album, Three Cheers For Sweet Revenge. I loved the title, so I gave their previous album, I Brought You My Bullets, You Brought Me Your Love a listen. I fell in love with Early Sunsets Over Monroeville, the soft lull of a song that has a lot more meaning when you listen to the lyrics. Their style just appealed to me, it wasn't the kind of 'emo' tag they received from the popular press, it was deep, meaningful, emotionally driven and powerful. Just like music should be, to me anyway.

Three Cheers came out, and I spent countless days and nights playing it on loop, blabbing about it to friends and boring them stiff, trying (and failing) to doodle the album art, the usual things a teenage girl does when she falls in love with a band. What most appealed to me about My Chemical Romance was the way they presented death as a topic that shouldn't be skirted around, which is exactly how I viewed it growing up. I've never been scared of dying, I've more or less welcomed it as a consequence to all our lives, and MCR addressed it the way I've always thought about it. Helena became my anthem for my teenage years, and I didn't care that people thought I was morbid for it. I'd had rough times in school and I caved on a few occasions, but My Chemical Romance are the reason I didn't give up entirely. I never took it one step too far because I knew there was something to live for. Because there were people out there feeling the same way as me and they were powering through it. Because there were five men that would speak for us and show them that the best revenge is staying alive.

The Black Parade will always remain my favourite album of all time. This point in MCR's career showed us fans that we were a part of a community, even if we didn't fit in with the rest of society. Every single track on that album speaks for us, and lets us know that we can keep going.
Famous Last Words will too remain my all time favourite song, and I was fully intending on getting the lyrics tattooed this year, so while tinged with poignancy, I'll still be getting that done this summer. No song in my eyes will compete with this, I can't even begin to describe how much it's meant to me.

Danger Days came and went for me, while it was a natural progression for a band to start embracing the positivity of life, I wasn't ready for it, my life didn't allow for positivity. I carried on listening to the Black Parade. I was ignorant, I refused to believe that optimism was the way forward for my favourite band. I refused to believe that Bob Bryar wasn't there anymore. More to the point, I refused to accept that anything could improve on Famous Last Words. In the past few months, I had accepted the Conventional Weapons releases and really got involved with the new wave of MCR fans, understanding what brought them to the band in the first place. I never disregarded new MCR fans as glory supporters, they're not lesser people just because they didn't jump on the MCR wagon as early as some of us did.

I was sat on the bus this morning checking Twitter as always, and I saw someone had retweeted the words 'my chemical divorce'. At first I thought it was the usual play on their band name, so I scrolled down for more. Alternative Press confirmed it. I had to spend the next six hours helping out at university, so I tried to ignore it, but I was hard pushed to force a smile. I got on the bus home and burst into tears.

I've had friendships and relationships built on my love for MCR, one of the first things an ex boyfriend gave me was The Black Parade Is Dead! on DVD, and I watched it consistently for weeks. I've also lost relationships because others don't understand how I feel about them, and that's their opinion, I'm not objecting to it, but disregard of my own feelings about a band that's saved my life more times than I care to remember, that's not welcome in my life.

What hurts most about this situation for me is the fact I always turned down opportunities to go see them live with my two friends I mentioned at the beginning of this post. I always disregarded their gigs as 'too expensive' for a schoolgirl living off her pocket money, 'too far away', 'there'll always be the next tour'. There won't be a next tour now. I have nobody but myself to blame for that.

If you've seen Apollo 13 then you might remember the daughter who's found crying in her room because The Beatles have split up, screaming her hatred for Paul McCartney for breaking her favourite band up. There are all sorts of fingers that can be pointed in these situations, I too have my finger pointed at a factor, and that's time. Time and life has taken these four men onto different paths and while I can stay mad at that for however long it takes to get over it, it's not anybody's fault. I'll just be cursing the time-space continuum for a long time.

I realise how whiny this entire post was, but everyone who's passionate about music has a band or artist that has supported them through the times they've felt down, so I'd love it if, even if you don't appreciate MCR, to not leave comments insulting them. After all, this is my blog, it's about my opinions. I've unfollowed plenty of people on Twitter today purely because I don't wish to have spiteful hatred of my favourite band on my feed, like I said, you're more than welcome to your own opinions, but I'm voicing mine by unfollowing. We MCR fans are humans too, we have feelings, probably more so than most.

Of course, the old debate reigns that they could come back. We've seen it with Fall Out Boy, but they were intentionally on hiatus. The optimistic comments floating around will always say:
'Even if they never come back, just remember, at least they existed'.

So Gerard, Frank, Mikey, Ray and of course Bob, thank you for the adventure, and I wish you all the best of luck in the future. But if you're going to come back someday, just remember - sooner rather than later, eh?

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  1. This is such an incredibly written post.

    I've been following along with the break-up on tumblr -- which makes it really powerful when I read such an articulate, well thought out post as this.

    I was always on the FOB side of the scene more so than MCR, but I appreciate(d) MCR's music, message, and fans just as much as "my" band.

    My thoughts are with all of MCR's fans today -- I've actually had their music on repeat since I woke up.

    Thank you again for such an incredible post <3.

    1. Thanks very much, that's lovely of you! I totally know what you mean, I'm the same because I've loved FOB just as much as MCR, if not a fraction more, so you must be as ecstatic as I am with their reunion? I'm glad someone's enjoyed this post, as much as my heart broke writing it, it's good to talk about them, get it off my chest. :)

  2. Heart is broken. This post is just so perfect.
    Early Sunsets Over Monroeville just made me cry. MCR was (among a couple) a soundtrack to my teen angst, a stage I never quite grew out of, songs like I'm Not Okay and Headfirst for Halos said words I couldn't, or didn't dare, say for myself. I even had the sexy sexy red eyeshadow thing going on xD. And the Black Parade started to lift me up (I quite liked Danger Days too ^.^').
    I agree with you. It has been time. They've grown older, gotten married and moved on. That's life.

    This post is amazing. Sorry for rambling on!

    1. Haha thank you so much, that really means a lot. Monroeville used to make me bawl so hard, now it's even worse! MCR just made life so much easier to deal with in those formative teenage years. I'll admit I'm growing to like DD now they've gone, too little too late though eh?

  3. Speaking as someone else who was saved at times by MCR, all I can say is, I'm right here with you. They're not "the band that saved my life" I attribute that to Panic! At The Disco, but there have been times where "we'll carry on" has been my motto. The only thing I can say is, I don't think this is the end for them.

    1. Panic were such a powerful band in our teenage years, weren't they? I'm so glad we're all back together again, us fans were divided by Danger Days, seemingly irreparably, and now ironically we're back in the same boat. I really do hope it's not the end for them, solo projects just won't be the same...


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