Fake Your Death – A Fan Tribute

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My Chemical Romance were an important band. Whether you love them or hate them, they left their mark on a world that couldn’t ignore it. Their last will and testament, Fake Your Death, was released on Monday, to the emotional cries of their fans; whether it was with happiness or with sadness. I reached out to fans, both who I knew well and not so well, from all over the world, to get a view many may not otherwise see on the band that were a part of all our lives for 12 years.
And to say a final goodbye.

So here are 12 pieces, for 12 years; to thank, to explain, to justify. We love you.

 

deb

Deb (@Nightingveil)

Fake Your Death kills. It seems a reply to several songs that long-time fans already love: Our Lady of Sorrows, Disenchanted, The Light Behind Your Eyes, Desert Song, and Kill All Your Friends. In this, it spans the entire discography, even including B-Sides that those outside the fandom probably never heard. That alone, is amazing.

In sound? Primarily piano, and a bit of hand clapping, with Gerard Way being supported vocally by Frank Iero. Some fans are considering it plain, but it’s not. It’s quiet and stripped down, like many early songs were, and it’s raw, and honest, and beautiful. While the grand scale of later offerings was gorgeous, for this closing; it was precious to have the voices return.

Bullets was on Eyeball, and not a major label. What might have been done to alter the genius, none of us will probably ever know, and maybe that’s best. This is MCR, in a way that maybe certain things hadn’t allowed them to be since those early days of writing songs to clear away pain. If by Way’s estimation Bullets was ‘broken and desperate’, Revenge was the ‘angrier’ of the two, The Black Parade placed them in a ‘stasis’ mode, and Danger Days was the album ‘some people don’t get’, then this final song is ‘release’.

‘I choose defeat. I walk away. And leave this place, the same today. Some like to sleep. We like to play.’ Despite fan outcry, sometimes you do have to walk away, just to retain pieces of who you are as a person. Our Boys can play again, and maybe that will help them find a sort of childlike happiness I’m not sure they’ve had in a very long time. It’s time to learn new lessons, and I am grateful to be able to see the changes that will come.

 

nick Nick (@nicksays_summer)

“Fake Your Death”, the last song recorded by world-famous rock group My Chemical Romance, is, without a doubt in my mind, one of the best songs ever released by the band. I was expecting a downer of a song, in a minor key, probably slow with piano leading, but was pleasantly surprised when I first played the song. The song is led by piano (played by auxiliary member James Dewees), and Gerard Way’s vocals. Light drums, timpani and clapping add depth to the song musically.

Lyrically, it is also one of the best songs ever recorded by MCR; the lyrics are incredibly introspective and reflective, with mellow vocals by Way that are only ever heard on their other mellow songs, such as “The Light Behind Your Eyes”. Such passages as “ ‘Cause even heroes get the blues/or any misery you choose”, as well as “You want the heart/and to be saved/but even good guys still get paid/so watch my back, and keep the blade/I think it got you laid” seem reflective about the trouble Way and other members went through during the band’s time. The chorus, “I choose defeat, and walk away/and leave this place the same today”, to me, seem to be Way saying that he’d rather have the band end on a happy note, rather than to continue and be faking happiness and joy at performing.

In my eyes, My Chemical Romance couldn’t have gone out in a more beautiful fashion. Fake Your Death gave a glimpse of a whole new My Chemical Romance, and, let me tell you, it was beautiful. The best was saved for last; FYD is easily one of the best songs. MCR will forever be a band to remember, and Fake Your Death really raises the bar when it comes to farewell songs.

 

t hoj

T. Hojberg (@tHoj101)

After weeks of anticipation, and a fair share of butterflies, on a cold Monday afternoon on February 17th 2014, the mature vocals, sweeping guitars, and soaring piano melodies cascade to a close on the 3 minute and 21 second power house of My Chemical Romance’s swan song Fake Your Death.

It’s important to note that before I share my reaction to this goodbye, I briefly divulge my history with the band, because I think having established a history with MCR, is really the magic behind this effort. With 11 years of tenure(as a fan) and exactly 15 MCR concerts under my belt, I’ve been lucky enough to witness My Chemical Romance grow from eye liner and ties to muscle cars and ray guns, and I’ve loved every minute of this adventure.

So naturally, when it came time to close that chapter and turn to the next page, I was met with anything but a flighty feeling. Simply put, the first time I listened to Fake Your Death I was overwhelmed with a feeling of remorse, but the second, third, fourth, and fifth time through – I couldn’t wipe the smile from my face; truly that’s always been the power of My Chemical Romance, and also why it’s hard not to smile, looking back on what they’ve accomplished.

I think it’s easy to obsess over the end, and forget about the beginning, and it goes without saying that Fake Your Death is an incredible end-thought to a brilliant idea, so I say ‘Look at all that pain,’ but do-so with a grain of salt. With My Chemical Romance, as it is with any creative endeavour – whether you want to write a book or sing a song – you can’t start the second chapter, without putting an end to the first.

 

mel

Mel (@xobizzardxo)

My Chemical Romance is one of those remarkable, inspiring bands that changed lives and made people come together to form an incredible fan base, known as the MCRmy. They were, are and will always be my favorite band. After all, I call them my heroes. I’ve known about MCR since I was a little girl, but believe it or not, had just started really getting into them a few years ago.

MCR taught and showed me things that I never would have been able to figure out on my own. They were my guide through life. I am who I am today because of them. One of the greatest things My Chemical Romance has done for me among many, is that they brought me to my closest friends. I have friends I consider family now that I simply could not live without, and that is a very special thing.

My Chemical Romance didn’t just create amazing songs and music, but they put out a good message. They showed their fan base that art and imagination are important, and that they were worth something. That even in the darkest of days, there is hope.  Each of those guys had something positive to prove, and as a band they proved many things. Bringing me to say, that MCR is certainly way more than ‘just a band’. The band means a lot to me, and to many others. The heart breaking news announced on that fateful day on March 22nd 2013 gutted us all. My world seemed practically shattered. The next year would be hard, but as a family, we as the fan base got through it.

Fake Your Death immediately became the MCRmy’s anthem, the song that concluded our favorite band. From the piano intro, to the lyrics, to the guitars, as a whole it holds tremendous meaning.  Whenever I hear that song, memories will flood my mind, my heart will ache, but I will also feel comforted, and extremely proud. Proud of what My Chemical Romance has done within the course of the 12 years they were a band.

In closing, I am thankful and grateful for all My Chem  has done for me as an individual, and for what they have done all together. I love this band endlessly. My Chemical Romance is immortal, it will live on forever. Because like Gerard had said, it is not a band, but an idea.

 

Jessica (@MySweetReveng3)

It’s hard for me to put into words what exactly I felt the first time I listened to “Fake Your Death” (My Chemical Romance’s final release.) As a fan of MCR for the last 12+ years, the band’s breakup has had a very emotional impact on me. It’s been just about a year since the news broke and I feel as if I’ve finally came to terms with the finality of it all… which if I’m being honest with myself doesn’t make things any easier. But I accept that it’s the guys’ decision and ultimately just wish them happiness as individuals.

From the very first piano note, I knew I was in for it. Tears started to form completely out of my control. Fake Your Death is so beautifully and heartbreakingly honest. The lyrics say it all “I choose defeat, I walk away, and leave this place, the same today.” After all, these men never set out to save lives, but they did. I believe however after time went on it became an expectation. A pretty heavy weight to carry. When all was said and done these men were and always be people just like us, they suffer from the same things that we suffer from, they didn’t want to sell the idea of being saviours. The band was never in it for the money or for the fame, they helped people by giving them hope. Hope that whatever shit life or others threw at us, we could rise above it and do or be anything we wanted to be.

Nobody not even The Band itself was any different than us, the fans.. .and we helped each other through hard times just like we will continue to do for others without them. They gave us the words and the message and now it’s our turn to pass that on and Keep My Chemical Romance’s legacy alive.

 

My Chemical RomanceCarissa (@cmcnellen)

Full, rich sound with penetrating vocals, MCR’s last full song collaboration continues to haunt and inspire me.  While some people find the song’s mere existence depressing, I find it oddly comforting and empowering, challenging you to take stock of who you are and what you want and whether your current situation is serving you.  Be true to yourself, what you want from life, your integrity, and your vision.

It’s easy to get sidetracked in life– by the world at large, outside influences and agendas, other people in your life, and more but there’s a point when, if after digging deep within yourself, you realize what you’re doing no longer serves you, you really owe it to yourself to find the courage to choose a new direction or path where you can regain your freedom and blaze new trails.

“I choose defeat.  I walk away…”

So many of us have been raised not to be “quitters” or that it’s “right” to stick with the same situation regardless of how poorly you’re treated or how savagely it harms your spirit.  More people than not stay in jobs or relationships they hate because they’re conditioned to do so or because they can’t or too often just don’t value themselves enough to dig deep and do the extra work that would get them out of a bad situation.

To me it conveys the burden of expectation, the weight and glare of the spotlight, disappointment at misunderstood or missed messages, art taking on a life of its own, and the crushing weight of feeling the world’s pain on your shoulders.  And sometimes it just makes more sense for one project to come to an end so there’s room for a new beginning.  To me that’s its own victory.

 

kieranKieran (@kmrkilljoy12)

After roughly 10 years of being a My Chemical Romance fan, it’s being increasingly hard to accept they’ve finished the final chapter in their story, collectively. But what a way to close an incredible 12 year career together.

Fake Your Death absolutely tore me apart inside but yet in the strangest way the song left me feeling more cheerful than mopey.  Anyone would have predicted the band to end it all with a ballsy rock smash up, but if there is one thing I have learned from MCR, it’s that you could never expect what they’d bring next.

Lyrically the song sounds a little to me like an honest account of how the band felt during their highest points – ’cause even heroes get the blues -‘ but yet as sad as the lyrics are, the music it comes with has an upbeat feel to it.

Ultimately I think this was the perfect song for MCR to end the band with, even if at the time they didn’t know it would be their last. If the last 12 years of MCR’s career was made into a movie, it’d be action packed with their explosive soundtrack throughout, and Fake Your Death is the fade out to credits track.

 

kathyKathy (@kcbban)

I think if you’re stuck in the past, you miss what’s happening in the present.  With all the individual things happening for each of the guys after the MCR break up, we kind of had to just follow along so we didn’t miss anything.  It seems they were trying to help us (and themselves) move forward and sharing the time with us even at the times when nothing may have been going on other than hanging out on twitter.  Having said that, until “Fake Your Death” was released, it didn’t TRULY feel like MCR was over. I know it was by all accounts and purposes, but the song (and the video accompanying it) felt like the final send-off. Closure.

“Fake Your Death” is a beautifully written song, which seems to perfectly fit with the ending of the band. I see it as their pain, our pain, all rolled up into one. It seems to be still in the spirit of MCR — ‘we’re all in this together and we’ll get through it together’.  It’s a sad ending but at the same time uplifting. A look back at the past but leaves me hopeful for the future.

It’s almost hard to believe that the song was written when it was; that it wasn’t actually written for right now, for this closure. It’s not that I don’t believe Gerard when he says when it was written; it’s just that it seems too perfectly fitting. But then again, I believe in kismet, in everything happening when it should and for a reason. That’s the way I feel about the band.  I found their music when I was ‘supposed’ to/when I needed it most, so I guess it makes sense that this song was written when it was but ended up being the end and is here now to give us all some closure. Kismet.

 

 noelleNoelle (@Noelle_Horn)

If you would have told me the first time I pressed play on my beaten up CD player with Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge CD inside (that I stole from my older sister) that this band would’ve saved my life multiple times, I would’ve probably thought you were crazy. I mean, how a could a band save you? The current release of Fake Your Death, has reminded me all the answers to that question.

I can remember one night after a familiar fight with my mother that ending with her telling me I was a burden; needless to say I was broken. Any hope I had been able to manage was broken down and I was done with life, done with holding on. So I decided, to put it simply, that I would end it. I laid down on my floor and decided to listen to my favorite band one last time. I put in my Black Parade CD and Famous Last Words came on, suddenly with tears streaming down my face I was reminded why I was fighting to keep going. I listened to it on repeat until the sun came up. That was the first day I decided I would fight this fight and I was not afraid to keep on living.

When I listened to Fake Your Death for the first time, it felt like the final chapter to an era, like a wave goodbye to a good friend – finally closing the book. I felt proud of this band that went from being so angry at the world, fighting addiction, suicidal thoughts, to this legend, this era of greatness, of being happy with yourself and saying fuck the rest. I also felt proud of myself, thinking of how much I have grown from that angry girl hiding behind a smile who would lay on the ground imagining her funeral. It’s time for us to stand up tall, and stop relying on someone to be our light, and be our own light. We have the tools, the weapons, the guys taught us that, now it’s our turn. It’s time to do it now and do it loud.

 

jeremy

Jeremy – One Last Shot (@Gerrrmmm)

My imagination ran faster than Franka Potente’s character in, “Lola Rennt”.
The thought of hearing the “last” My Chemical Romance song made my brain go into overload.
What would the style be? What would it be about? Would it be fast? Would it be slow? On and on my mind went to work.  In conclusion, I theorized this “last” MCR song would be reminiscent of Three Cheers. When hearing the first note of the, “Fake Your Death” video… I could tell my theory was very wrong. The song played…  the video brought me to each and every memory of the band I cherish… then it ended.

I sat there. Silent.

Gerard said this was MCR’s “eulogy”. He nailed it. That’s exactly what it was. I played the song again. After listening a second time, I had the same reaction. I repeated this process a few more times.
This is the band that gave me and millions of fans who also followed them, hope, inspiration, and most importantly amazing music.
Though part of me wants to believe my theory I stated earlier, after hearing this song… It truly feels like a song that would be played as a soundtrack for the end.
Fans can only hope that maybe the song title really does have a deeper meaning.

 

 

lexiLexi (@_LexiWright_)

“We are My Chemical….Romance!”

Simply hearing those words at a show evokes all the memories I have associated with this bands music; I have experienced growing up, being isolated, bullied, not believing in myself, pain, heartbreak, confusion, manic depression, anxiety, addiction and love all with their songs. I love this band because they were a constant, secure thing I could hold on to & rely on in a time where I had nothing else. I grew up with this band & their happiness & security within themselves grew at the same time mine did.

Fake Your Death is a beautiful example of looking back & realising everything you have survived, that you are okay to walk away from that pain, that despite the fact it will always be a part of you…You have overcome. I’ve listened to it numerous times, and everything about it, the riff, piano, vocals exude that they’re appreciative to every fan for supporting them in their dreams, for reciprocating the feeling that they are not alone either.

Of course I will miss My Chemical Romance. I know when I’m super old & driving my grandkids on an adventure, they’ll come on the radio & because I saw and understood (much like others did) the complications & self doubt that depression and addiction brings, how gutsy it must have been to get up there and lay bare everything they felt for the world to hear, not for just their own sake but for others to know they had something to reach out to – I will get that same feeling of pride that swells in my chest.

Nothing makes me happier than to see you happy.

“Continue to fail. If you want to make art you have to fail. And so, the artist’s job is to fail better”

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katieKatie – Editor of Hit The Scene (@CruellaLives) 

When you love something you never want it to end.

For me, My Chemical Romance were a light at the end of the tunnel in a blackness I couldn’t escape from in my teenage years. Their songs and messages carried me through a time where (and I know I’m not alone in this); I couldn’t see hope.

Through them, I met some of my best friends, friends who I live and breathe for.  I thank them for that. I thank them for the shows, and the speeches. And I thank them for the strength and determination and most of all, the inspiration.

They are the reason I can write this piece today, and gather my friends together to help me. They are the reason I believed enough to put every ounce of myself into this site, and do what I’ve always wanted to do. I thank them for that the most.

Fake Your Death is the perfect ending. The first piercing piano note wells up in your eyes; the almost euphoric feeling is instant. It’s a weird tightening in your chest, happy and sad all at once. As the clapping refrain melts into the vocals; it is less a funeral, and more a celebration. The lyrics tell you their story, whether it is still true today or not; it moves, it thinks, it feels. FYD is a cauldron being watched over by a good witch; she pours in Revenge, she drops in Bullets, she sprinkles in Danger.

Fake Your Death encapsulates everything My Chem were, are, and evolved into over their short decade and a bit. It is also a window into what they could have been.

It serves as a reminder that, in one last agonising day on Twitter, all of us – the MCRmy were there for each other, and are a group of people brought together by creativity and love.

And you could never “leave this place the same today”. If the graffiti they write on your grave is anything, it’ll be this –

You changed everything.