For last year’s Monumentour, Fall Out Boy teamed up with Paramore and brought pop-punk to amphitheaters across the country. Their new Boys of Zummer tour will hit many of the same venues, but the band’s approach is almost entirely different. “We’re going to do a less standard rock & roll show,” singer Pete Wentz tells Rolling Stone. “On Monumentour we did the ‘rock & roll band plays at night’ thing kind of as big as we planned on doing. It felt really cool, but if we did it again it would be rehashing the same thing and you can kind of get caught in that.”
By continuously moving forward, Fall Out Boy have been able to remain headliners while their former peers have been consigned Warped Tour purgatory. The band formed outside Chicago in 2001 and eventually expanded their pop-punk sound to include hip-hop, arena rock and even a little EDM. After a brief hiatus, they returned with 2013’s Save Rock and Roll. In January, they followed with American Beauty/American Psycho; the thunderous lead single, “Centuries,” is based around a sample from “Tom’s Diner” by Suzanne Vega.
Wentz says that they made the LP with amphitheaters in mind, and for this tour, they sought a partner who would push them further into new territory. That person turned out to be “See You Again” rapper Wiz Khalifa. “I don’t feel like we have a ton of contemporaries who play the same kind of music,” Wentz says. “We’re an artist who came from a continent but have become an island. We try to look out for other artists who are like that because that’s what kind of makes sense with our band.”
The pairing with Khalifa may seem odd, but according to Wentz, both artists have much in common. “He straddled hip-hop and pop the way we straddled pop and rock music,” says the singer. “Him coming from Pittsburg and us coming from the suburbs of Chicago, we both kind of grew in a lab and were able to create a culture. I think that’s what Wiz did with Taylor Gang, and we have something that’s kind of different. Putting those two together could be interesting.”
The Boys of Zummer Tour began last night in Camden, New Jersey, and its North American run continues through August 10th. Come October, the artists will reunite for a month in Europe. Hoodie Allen opens the U.S. dates, and Matt & Kim and Professor Green take his place on the second leg.