Fall Out Boy are taking a little break -- don't worry, they'll be back! -- but in the meantime, they realized a greatest hits album this week called Believers Never Die. J-14 talked to bassist Pete Wentz all about the album, Taylor Swift, and what Pete really thinks about his new haircut.
J-14: What is the new single off Believers Never Die - Greatest Hits called "Alpha Dog" all about?
Pete Went: I hate explaining lyrics, but one of the things that I've loved about Bob Dylan is that he never really explains it and that way you can have the song mean anything you want to you. But at the same time, "Alpha Mega" is a biblical term that means beginning and the end in an Alpha Dog and a Megalomaniac, or two similar dispositions -- something about opening the curtain and then walking off into the sunset.
J-14: Why was this was the right time for a greatest hits album?
Pete: We decided we were going to take a break for a little bit. We've been doing record, promo, tour, tour, pre-recording, record, promo, tour, tour for like eight years, and we're like, 'We're going to take a break and we're not going to put terms on the break as far as dates go.' We're not disillusioned in that we have a greatest hits the same way that Bob Marley would or the Eagles would but at the same time, it gives us the chance give a thank you to the fans. There's secret messages in the artwork and there's two new songs on it. "Alpha Dog" was a song that we demoed half of and put on a mixtape earlier on the internet earlier this year. Fans seemed to kind of react to that, so we decided that we wanted to write and record full versions of it.
J-14: You said Fall Out Boy was going on an "indefinite hiatus" -- what does that mean the band?
Pete: We haven't said an indefinite hiatus -- I don't know really where that came from. We're just taking a break and decompressing. We're not putting terms on when we're coming back. We're going to come back when everybody's excited about it and it's fun. I think if we kept going at the pace we were going at, there was a definite implosion that would have happened -- this allows breathing room and us to be creative again.
J-14: A lot of your lyrics are very deep and personal -- what is it like to hear Patrick Stump singing the words you wrote?
Pete: They make more sense to me. It's like I find the anthropological site and then he's the one who identifies the dinosaur -- he puts the pieces together. It's more therapeutic to me to watch somebody else do that and sing them. He also has the voice of a cute little angel.
J-14: What was it like to do the Band Hero commercial with Taylor Swift, who called you one of her heroes?
Pete: Did she? I keep hearing this from people and it blows my mind. Oh wow. It was kind of cool! I only saw the commercial once to be honest because I've been out of the country for the past twelve or thirteen days. I admire her as a person in her genre because of her songwriting abilities -- I think a lot of people don't write their own songs. She's a very honest, genuine person. She came by the shoot when we were shooting when she didn't really need to -- I think to see how slick the floor was -- but she was rad.
J-14: How do you feel about your haircut being a big deal to people?
Pete: I know. What is the deal? It made national news. We're talking about the healthcare reform and then there's Pete's hair. It's only hair. It will grow back. It felt like it was made out of Legos, like I could just take it off and put it on someone else. The swoosh had to go. I was a little bit nervous about the shape of my head at the time. [Now] I feel more aerodynamic.
Photo: Courtesy of Island Def Jam