Stadium MK, Milton Keynes
Thursday 19th May 2022
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MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE – MILTON KEYNES – LIVE REVIEW
It’s March 2013 and the following statement appears on the website of My Chemical Romance, breaking hearts around the world:
“Being in this band for the past 12 years has been a true blessing. We’ve gotten to go places we never knew we would. We’ve been able to see and experience things we never imagined possible. We’ve shared the stage with people we admire, people we look up to, and best of all, our friends. And now, like all great things, it has come time for it to end. Thanks for all of your support, and for being part of the adventure.”My Chemical Romance statement – March 2013
Fast forward to October 2019 and those hearts are sent racing with news that the band will reunite for a show in LA that December. Following that show many more shows are announced including three dates at Stadium MK in Milton Keynes. Of course just weeks later the world stopped as the pandemic took hold, and those shows fell by the wayside.
Finally, now in May 2022 the band can make their long awaited return to the UK; their show at the Eden Project just days ago being their first show on these shores since headlining Leeds Festival in August 2011.
So with the magnitude of these shows established let’s get into it! Stadium MK is the home to MK Dons Football Club, but has also become a popular destination for live music following an appearance from Rammstein back in 2019.
There is a great supporting bill in place this evening, with the hotly-tipped Witch Fever opening up proceedings. The band are able to grab the attention of the early crowd and hold it throughout their short but impressive set. The band will release their debut album in October, and after this performance that is certainly one to watch out for.
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Another reunited band is next as LostAlone return having split back in 2014. The band toured with My Chemical Romance early in their career, so it’s a nice touch to have them back on this show. Frontman Steven Battelle does a fantastic job getting the crowd warmed up and the band leave the stage victoriously having conquered their big return.
Main support comes from the incredible Placebo who have just released their first album in 9 years, ‘Never Let Me Go’. In true Placebo fashion the band don’t cater towards the crowd and for the first thirty or so minutes stick with a mix of new songs and obscurer tracks from their back catalogue.
As a huge fan of the band, their set is fantastic, but from the audience reaction those in attendance clearly want the hits. Finally the band oblige and close out their set with the likes of ‘For What It’s Worth’, ‘The Bitter End’ and ‘Infra-red’. Placebo are defiantly going to do whatever they want to do, for some the results are stunning, for casual bystanders the results are somewhat lacklustre. Thankfully I’m in the first camp!
One thing for sure is that audience response levels are guaranteed to be high as we prepare now for our headline act. After a decade of inactivity and a couple of extra years of delay, it’s finally time for My Chemical Romance to hit the stage.
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The stadium erupts as they do, with singer Gerard Way taking the stage in blood spattered all white suit and mask for their new single, ‘The Foundations of Decay’. The noise levels then go through the non-existent roof with classic tracks ‘Helena’ and ‘Give ‘Em Hell, Kid’.
With the band mixing the setlist up every night, fans are kept on their toes and that just adds to the general excitement, making the atmosphere inside the stadium as hot as it comes.
There are huge moments within the set, with ‘Teenagers’, ‘Na Na Na (Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na)’, ‘Welcome to the Black Parade’ and ‘The Ghost of You’ all getting the entire stadium on their feet singing.
Then there are moments for the old school fans with deep cuts such as ‘It’s Not a Fashion Statement, It’s a Fucking Deathwish’ and ‘Skylines and Turnstiles’ featuring tonight.
It almost feels like the band has never been away, with the group typically cohesive yet brash. They say absence makes the heart grow fonder, yet those with the band in their heart already hold them up as aloft as a godlike entity.
This return is only going to amplify that, but with showings like this the band are only going to solidify their position as one of the biggest on the planet.
‘Famous Last Words’ and ‘I’m Not Okay (I Promise)’ both feature towards the end and the band finally send fans home happy with ‘Vampire Money’. My Chemical Romance are back, hearts are healed and there are big things to come!
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