Eleanor Coughlin (she/they)

Editorial Team Member

The band Fall Out Boy is one of my favorite bands of all time. Most people know them from their songs like Centuries, Sugar We’re Goin Down, Dance Dance, and Thnks fr th Mmrs. They have a pretty decent discography, with 8 studio albums that I’ve listened to probably a thousand times since seventh grade. Their newest album, So Much (For) Stardust, just released on March 24th of this year, and it’s launched me back into my obsessive listening. I decided that this would be a good chance to share my opinions and rankings of each of their albums. 

These rankings have definitely changed since I first started listening to FOB, and will absolutely change in the future, but here’s my favorite Fall Out Boy albums, ranked from most favorite to least favorite.

  1. Folie à Deux
  2. Infinity on High
  3. Save Rock and Roll
  4. From Under The Cork Tree
  5. Take This to Your Grave
  6. So Much (For) Stardust
  7. MANIA
  8. American Beauty/American Psycho

I love all of these albums, and I think they’re all very good, but some are definitely better than others. However, this isn’t a ranking of how good I think each album is – it’s a ranking of my favorites. 

There are so many things I could say about Folie à Deux. My top two favorite FOB songs are off that album: 27 and (Coffee’s For Closers). All of FOB’s songs have deep meanings to them, but I find that the songs in Folie à Deux, especially the two I mentioned, have incredibly strong emotional meanings to them. 27 starting out with the lines “If “home is where the heart is”/Then we’re all just fucked” is such an impactful start to a song that doesn’t waver in its emotional intensity. (Coffee’s For Closers) is all about time passing and things changing, which are things that I’ve always been afraid of and struggled to accept. This song has really helped in lessening my fear of change. I would say that Folie à Deux is Fall Out Boy’s best album if it was made up of just the last eight songs because those songs back-to-back just work so well together. That’s not to say that the first five songs aren’t good. They’re amazing, but it’s just something about them that doesn’t flow exactly right. 

That’s why I believe Infinity on High is their best album. It starts out with a song dedicating the album “to anybody people said couldn’t make it”, talking about their experiences with their rise to fame and essentially rejecting it. After that, all the songs flow incredibly well into each other, and listening to all the songs in order is a huge must for me. It’s also an incredibly emotional album, with lyrics and songs that are very bittersweet. I also think that all the instrumentals are absolutely amazing and some of their best work in this album. 

My third favorite album is Save Rock and Roll, which is also an album where all the songs flow very well into each other. It was the first album they put out after they came back from a long hiatus in 2013. While this album is still emotional and down to earth, it’s much more concept album-like. I don’t think it was meant for me, but the music video series accompanied by the album, The Young Blood Chronicles, definitely pushed that concept album feel. 

Next is From Under The Cork Tree. This album is the one that really pushed Fall Out Boy into emo fame in the mid 2000’s, and it has some absolute bangers on it, like my third favorite Fall Out Boy song, I’ve Got A Dark Alley And A Bad Idea That Says You Should Shut Your Mouth (Summer Song). This album is also where FOB got the reputation of having ultra-long song titles, which they kept up until Folie à Deux, and then never did it again because they didn’t like the feeling of being boxed in. I think this album is what a lot of people think of when they think of Fall Out Boy, but I think that this album was only the start of Fall Out Boy truly discovering itself. 

But if we want to go back to the very start (technically not the very start because the very start was an EP (A collection of songs that isn’t long enough to be an album but not short enough to just be a single) but that isn’t really considered to be their first album), we would look at Take This To Your Grave, which is my next favorite. Take This To Your Grave is full of angsty teens who are mad at the world and their ex girlfriends, using hardcore punk music to get out their feelings vibes. FOB has said before that this album was more of them trying to make music like other artists, and I agree. It definitely has the fiery spark of the emotional angst that all Fall Out Boy albums have, but it isn’t quite them

My next favorite is their most recent, So Much (For) Stardust. It honestly took me a while to form my opinions on this album, because, with the first listen-through, I was only really vibing with a few songs. Now, after over fifteen times I’ve listened to this album all the way through, I definitely love and appreciate every song. It’s a much more mature album than any of their others in the form of lyrics. They make note of this in my favorite song off this album, Hold Me Like a Grudge, with the lines “And I guess I’m getting older/’cause I’m less pissed/When I can’t get onto the guest list/To the end of the world”. 

MANIA is my second-to-last favorite. It’s very good, but I think it has a lot less to say for its lyrics and instrumentals. The lyrics in all the songs are very repetitive, and in general, I’m not really a big fan of repetition in songs. The instrumentals are a lot more electronically created than in their former albums. While FOB has always experimented with their music and their style changes with every album, I do prefer their other sounds. Although, this album was my favorite Fall Out Boy album at a point in my eighth-grade life, so it’s absolutely not bad, especially the song The Last Of The Real Ones, which I could listen to forever. 

Last but not least we have American Beauty/American Psycho. I can say with confidence that it’s probably the album most Gen-Z people would know the most songs off of. Centuries, Immortals, Uma Thurman, and Irresistible were constantly on the radio for a year or two after it came out in 2015. This is probably the reason I’ve ranked this album so low. There are only a few songs on this album I can listen to (and I LOVE those songs), but none of them are the songs I listed above. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I willingly listened to Centuries or Immortals. They’re not bad songs, they’re just burned into my head because of how much I heard them on the radio when I was younger. It’s also a much more pop album than any of their others, which I don’t mind, but I’m a fan of their heavier stuff.

Overall, I hope that this hasn’t discouraged you from going and listening to Fall Out Boy. I truly believe that there’s an album for everyone in their discography, because of how different their music and sound is every time. Fall Out Boy is a group of incredibly talented artists, and their music will forever be stuck in my head.