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From Under The Cork Tree is Fall Out Boy's second studio album that was released on May 3, 2005 by Island Records.

TracklistingEdit

  1. Our Lawyer Made Us Change The Name Of This Song So We Wouldn't Get Sued
  2. Of All The Gin Joints In All The World
  3. Dance, Dance
  4. Sugar, We're Goin Down
  5. Nobody Puts Baby In The Corner
  6. I've Got A Dark Alley And A Bad Idea That Says You Should Shut Your Mouth (Summer Song)
  7. 7 Minutes In Heaven (Atavan Halen)
  8. Sophomore Slump Or Comeback Of The Year
  9. Champagne For My Real Friends, Real Pain For My Sham Friends
  10. I Slept With Someone In Fall Out Boy And All I Got Was This Stupid Song Written About Me
  11. A Little Less Sixteen Candles, A Little More "Touch Me"
  12. Get Busy Living Or Get Busy Dying (Do Your Part To Save The Scene And Stop Going To Shows)
  13. XO

Album BackgroundEdit

Fall Out Boy formed near Chicago, Illinois, in 2001. They debuted with a self-released demo in the same year. In 2002, they released a split EP with Project Rocket through Uprising Records.

A first mini-album, Fall Out Boy's "Evening Out with Your Girlfriend" was recorded in 2002, but released in 2003 by Uprising against the band's wishes.

Both releases helped Fall Out Boy gain notoriety on the internet and attention from record labels.

The band signed with indie label Fueled by Ramen and received an advance from major label Island Records, which financed the production of "Take This to Your Grave."

Grave became an underground success and helped the band gain a dedicated fanbase. The band returned to the studio in November 2004 to begin work on a new album.

However, the group suffered a setback in February 2005 after Pete Wentz's anxieties about creating a new record culminated in a suicide attempt.

Wentz explained, "It was overwhelming. I was either totally anxious or totally depressed. It is particularly overwhelming when you are on the cusp of doing something very big and thinking that it will be a big flop. I was racked with self-doubt."

After undergoing therapy, Wentz rejoined the band and headed to Burbank, California to record the album.

Recording & ProductionEdit

"From Under the Cork Tree" was recorded in Burbank, California and served as the first time that Fall Out Boy had stayed in California for an extended period of time. They lived in corporate housing during the making of the album.

In contrast to the rushed recording schedule of "Take This to Your Grave," recording schedule, Fall Out Boy took a much more gradual pace while working on "From Under the Cork Tree."

It was the first Fall Out Boy record in which Stump created all the music and Wentz wrote all the lyrics, continuing the approach they took for some songs on Grave.

Stump felt that this process was much more "smooth" as every member was able to focus on their individual strengths. He explained: "We haven't had any of those moments when I play the music and he'll say, 'I don't like that,' and he'll read me lyrics and I'll say, 'I don't like those lyrics.' It's very natural and fun."

Despite this, Fall Out Boy had great difficulty creating its desired sound for the album, constantly scrapping new material.

Two weeks before recording sessions began, they abandoned ten songs and wrote eight more, including the album's first single, "Sugar, We're Goin Down".

The chorus of "Sugar We're Goin Down" was nearly thrown away by the group's label, but it was ultimately salvaged. Wentz recalled, "Our label told us the chorus was too wordy and the guitars were too heavy and that the radio wasn’t going to play it."

Island Records also intervened when the band wanted to title the album's first track "My Name is David Ruffin And These Are The Temptations."

Wentz stated: "Our label said, 'You're going to get sued for doing that,' and our lawyer said, 'You're definitely going to get sued for doing that,' which totally sucked. So we said, 'OK, why don't we immortalize you in a song?'"

They subsequently retitled the song "Our Lawyer Made Us Change the Name of This Song So We Wouldn't Get Sued".

CompositionEdit

Patrick Stump served as the primary composer for "From Under the Cork Tree".

He said of the album's musical style: "We experimented quite a bit with all sorts of stuff. Some metal, some folk, some R&B. But ultimately, your band sounds like your band. You can put those things in it, but it's still going to sound like you."

Niyaz Pirani of The Orange County Register referred to "Dance, Dance" as "pop-punk-meets-swing-dance glory".

On earlier works, Stump collaborated with Wentz on the lyrics. For this album and albums thereafter, Wentz handled all the lyrical duties. He called them "more introspective" than the group's previous album.

Wentz said: "Take This To Your Grave was very reactionary. It was like this person does this to you. But part of growing up is understanding that if you end up in the same situation over and over again you probably have to examine your own self and wonder whether that's one of the reasons that you have ended up in the same situation repeatedly. This time the lyrics were more about the anxiety and depression that goes along with looking at your own life."

He also said of his lyrics, "This is where we're going to be a year from now, and this is what you're going to be saying about us."

Wentz described "I've Got a Dark Alley and a Bad Idea that Says You Should Shut Your Mouth (Summer Song)" as "looking in the mirror and not feeling safe in your own skin."

The band wanted to create a record that was "a lot more developed," Wentz said. "When we did Take This to Your Grave, we were really young, we had two weeks to do it and it was like, make it or break it, this is your only shot. This time we had more time to sit with the songs and make them work and more of a chance to plan things out. To us, we're throwing the fight, but we didn't write a record that's throwing a fight. We wrote a record that means a lot to us but maybe isn't going to mean a lot to the people who are hyping us as the next big thing. And that's fine. We don't want to be the saviors of anything — we just want to be ourselves. We made a record we really like, and that's all we ever wanted. Fall Out Boy have never been about goals or ambitions. We started out just for fun, and it became this huge thing."

Album Title & ArtworkEdit

The album title is taken from a line in Munro Leaf's 1936 children's book, "The Story of Ferdinand" which Wentz was intrigued by.

The story focuses on a bull named Ferdinand who would rather sniff flowers under a cork tree than participate in fights.

The album cover features a van with a trailer in a slump of snow; this is a reference to the car accident Fall Out Boy was in while they were driving to New York City to film the music video for "Grand Theft Autumn/Where Is Your Boy" from their album, "Take This to Your Grave."

Chart PerformanceEdit

"From Under the Cork Tree" debuted at #9 on the Billboard 200 with 68,000 copies sold in its first week.

It became the band's first top 10 effort, as their 2003 album, "Take This to Your Grave" did not chart in the top 200.

Logging 78 weeks on the chart, the album has sold over 2.7 million copies in the US and over three million worldwide, making it Fall Out Boy's best selling album. It is certified RIAA double platinum for shipments of two million copies.

During Christmas 2005, the album again reached its peak of #9 with 157,000 sales, posting the band's second biggest sales week to date as of 2013.

By August 2006, the album had sold nearly 2,400,000 copies.

Upon the release of Fall Out Boy's 2007 follow-up album "Infinity on High" (which debuted at #.1 on the Billboard 200), "From Under the Cork Tree" re-entered the Billboard 200 at No. 168 with 5,300 sales.

In early 2015, the album re-entered the Billboard 200 at #190 for a 78th week on the strength of their number-one album release, "American Beauty/American Psycho".

On the 2005 year-end charts, the album was #53 on the Billboard 200, #26 in 2006 and #187 on the 2000s decade-end chart.

Critical ReceptionEdit

Critical reaction to From Under the Cork Tree was generally positive.

In an extremely positive review of the album, Johnny Loftus of Allmusic said: "Musically, Cork Tree's first five tracks are relentless, with razor-sharp melodies that seem familiar but sound totally unique at the same time. The 'Oh! Oh!'s and punchy chords of 'Of All the Gin Joints in All the World' are a thrill greater than any Jimmy Eat World album ever; 'Sugar, We're Going Down' 's half-time shifts are triumphs of tumbling words; and the opening track meditates wryly on all-ages shows' fame. Further, when Fall Out Boy rip into 'Sophomore Slump or Comeback of the Year,' summer 2005 will not be able to ignore them. 'We're the therapists pumping through your speakers/Delivering just what you need,' they sing. It's obviously time to embrace our inner mall kid."

Entertainment Weekly gave the album a B+ in one of its "short takes" and called it "Peppy pop-punk aimed at the Warped Tour crowd. If the infectious songs don't get you, the snarky titles will".

However, mixed criticism was dealt by reviewers for the band being part of a saturated scene of pop-punk bands.

In Rolling Stone's review, they gave it 3 stars out of 5 saying: "...FOB's knack for crafting ginormous, soaring anthems is in full-force: even with its demented, inscrutable lyrics, "Sugar, We're Goin Down" will likely still be blasting from radios ten years on."

Music critic Robert Christgau, in a C+ review of the album, said that "these Warped Tour cover boys aren't terrible, but are they ever ordinary. Only their record company would claim that emotional vocals, dramatic dynamics, poppy-punky tempos, and not actually all that catchy tunes add up to their own sound."

IGN was very negative towards the album, giving it a 3.6 out of 10 saying: "Pop-punk had to begin somewhere, and when it rains, it apparently pours; Fall Out Boy is merely another addition to a stable bursting at the seams."

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