“I love you, Chicago,” Patrick Stump of Fall Out Boy sings on the closing notes of the second track “City in a Garden,” and, in a lot of ways, Lake Effect Kid, is very much a love letter to Chicago and all of the band’s memories surrounding their city. Nostalgia aside, Fall Out Boy have shown that they have not peaked, and the Lake Effect Kid EP showcases some of their best work to date.
The album opener and title track showcases a very guitar-heavy sound, backed by the trademark vocal delivery of Stump and the breakneck beats of Andrew Hurley. It’s on this track that Fall Out Boy begin to reminisce of their home with lyrics such as: “Summer love on a gurney with a squeaky wheel/And joke us, joke us/’Til Lakeshore Drive comes back into focus/I just wanna come back to life/Spark my crazy head to keep your woman alive.” Through this experiment of moving their minds back to their roots, and re-recording a song that was found on a previous mix-tape, Fall Out Boy have simultaneously appeased both sides of the coin of their audience: those who think they lost focus after Folie a Deux and those who love they continue to adapt to modern sounds on Save Rock and Roll and beyond.
While some casual fans of Fall Out Boy may write this EP off as just a blip on the radar of reminding them why they used to like this band, I feel they would be doing a big disservice to themselves. For those who have followed the band through each album, Lake Effect Kid is incredibly rewarding. The track that continues some of the electronic sounds of MANIAis “Super Fade.” It’s on this track that the group brings back some of the electronic beats and synths, yet with the thematic elements of the EP, with lyrics such as “Chicago gets my soul,” and the track does not feel out of place.
So what we are left with is a wonderful, cohesive, collection of three songs that remind us of why we fell in love with this band in the first place. The love letter may have been for Chicago, but the sincerity is felt far beyond their hometown as Fall Out Boy have given us three songs to spin over and over again as we close out the Summer.