10 reasons My Chemical Romance shouldn’t get back together
The Jonas Brothers set the internet aflame last weekend when Joe Jonas claimed he heard My Chemical Romance rehearsing near them in New York. Reunion theories instantly ran wild. Skeptics started listing off, first, what it could’ve been (see Frank Iero And The Future Violents) and second, all the reasons it couldn’t possibly be happening.
We’re here to chime in on the latter, listing off arguments why this isn’t the right time to reunite. From the former members being engrossed in their respective personal lives to successful solo careers, here are 10 reasons My Chemical Romance shouldn’t get back together.
1. FRANK IERO. PERIOD
It’s one of the most forthright quotes in AP history, and we’ll repeat it again. During the The Black Parade era, someone from AP had the nerve to ask what would happen if that album flopped horribly, causing the band to be dropped and perhaps disintegrate. Frank Iero put it all on the line right there: “I don’t give a shit: If I had to work at McDonald’s for the rest of my life to play shows and ride in a shitty van on tour? I’ve done it. I’ll do it again.” Iero has made three proper albums as a band leader, is one-half of Death Spells with James Dewees and has a fair amount of other singles and projects under his belt. He was the first MCR member to get music out into the world post-breakup and is moving full speed ahead with his dream band, the Future Violents. If rockers like “Young And Doomed” and “Moto Pop” doesn’t get your arm hair to stand on end, maybe you should Google “personality transplant” and see what comes up.
2. THE CASUAL GERARD WAY
It’s been five years since the release of Hesitant Alien, the debut LP from Gerard Way that was accompanied by a relatively brief spate of touring across the States. Since then, Gerard’s attitude toward making new music could be best described as cavalier, using the immediacy of the internet to issue one-off songs (“Baby, You’re A Haunted House,” “Getting Down The Germs,” “Dasher”) as he sees fit. Dude won’t make an honest-to-God second solo record: How could you possibly expect him to dedicate the amount of time to recalibrate four other dudes’ schedules to make music?
3. THE WAY BROTHERS GETTING COMICAL
With the recent revival of Gerard’s DC comics imprint, Young Animal, we should be seeing a few more original series from the rock star/author. Mikey’s first comic, Collapser, is already in the works under his brother’s imprint, meaning both Way brothers will most likely be wrapped up in the quest to become the reincarnations of Stan Lee. Nonetheless, be prepared for more editorial content from the pair in the near future (and hopefully another on-screen series, fingers crossed).
4. The Umbrella Academy TV show
The Umbrella Academy: Apocalypse Suite introduced comic fans to Sir Reginald Hargreeves and his seven adopted children in 2007. Since then, Gerard and illustrator Gabriel Bá have fulfilled two more volumes, Dallas and Hotel Oblivion. Gerard’s world was also brought to the screen by Netflix earlier this year, hitting major streaming numbers in its first month and being renewed for a second season. Between the show’s major success and Gerard recently rejoining the cast and crew on set, it would definitely make balancing a full-blown reunion quite difficult. Plus, he’s having way too much fun teaming back up with Ray Toro for cover songs as soundtrack offerings such as “A Hazy Shade Of Winter” and “Happy Together.”
5. DON’T FORGET ABOUT RAY TORO
Don’t be fooled by radio silence: Toro is still working hard. We haven’t had much solo work since Remember The Laughter in 2016, but the guitarist seems to still be in contact with his former My Chemical Romance bandmates. Toro is still scheming behind the scenes with music projects, most recently with mixing duties for an Iero acoustic session as well as joining Gerard in a score for Netflix’s The Umbrella Academy series. These efforts still may not be enough for fans looking to fill the MCR-sized void left in their hearts, but it should be enough to keep the reunion rumors flowing, however stretched and sad they may be.
6. IT’S ALL IN THE FAMILIES
It’s strange to see our favorite rock stars be thrust into the adventure of parenthood, and MCR are no exception. As it goes with age, musicians tend to settle down and have families just like the rest of us. The band are already responsible for seven children between the four of them, with Mikey recently adding one more to the total. As it goes with the addition of offspring, other things fall to the wayside, including wild touring schedules. Unless the guys plan on packing up their families for the road or studio, a reunion would cut into the ever-important activity of parenting. But hey, maybe a few of their offspring will take a liking to music and form a mini-MCR.
7. MIKEY FUCKING WAY
Mikey’s life has already been addressed in previous points on this list. But there’s a whole new album from Electric Century, his partnership with Dave Debiak, that’s in the final stages of tweaking. By mixing familiar elements of respected musical genres, the duo come off like a retro-fitted futurist manifesto worthy of soundtracking something reminiscent of the sequel of Sky Captain And The World Of Tomorrow. The duo are onto something that few bands are starting to take notice of, so why would he leave the laboratory to reinvent the wheel?
8. IF KEVIN LYMAN CAN’T DO IT, NOBODY CAN
MCR were only on one Warped Tour, and that was considered the stuff of legends. (Go visit Iero’s guitar at the Rock Hall’s Forever Warped exhibit this summer.) Naturally, Warped founder Kevin Lyman made some calls and offered a bid. It didn’t change anything, but he did get the Future Violents, so that was still a win. What we can tell you is that every year since MCR’s dissolution, there’s always been a pronouncement that someone who is “a reliable inside source” is telling us “this is the year that it’s going to happen.” (It usually stems from concert promotion companies with more bluster than gold bullion.) So let’s use one of MCR’s faves—British alt-rock band the Smiths—as a model. The iconic duo of Morrissey and Johnny Marr have turned down offers of $75 million to reform. Just let that sit right here and finish the rest of the list...
9. HOW WOULD THEY EVEN DO IT?
Yes, we’ve all heard about how Gerard wished to model his band after his longtime faves, Smashing Pumpkins. If we’re going by that playbook, should we consider Hesitant Alien to be his version of Pumpkins’ founder Billy Corgan’s debut solo LP from 2005, The Future Embrace? (And if we’re really splitting all the hairs, what’s the MCR analog to Corgan’s first post-Pumpkins band Zwan?) With everyone so far along in their lives and powering their own destinies, they probably couldn’t even pick where their first reunion gig would be. A 107,000-strong stadium in Michigan? Or London’s venerable punk hang, the 100 Club (capacity: 350)?
10. WHAT ELSE WOULD WE HAVE TO OBSESS OVER?
We will gladly put ourselves on the altar of roasting if My Chemical Romance were to issue a press release saying they reunited “in an effort to stem the amount of conjecture-based lists appearing on music websites.” Now will you please shut up already? And tell that Jonas bro to stick some cake in his piehole somewhere off the Jersey shore…