Yesterday marked three years since My Chemical Romance’s break-up and I keep thinking how much I miss this band. MCR inspired and challenged themselves and their fans with every record they made, even though they were never supposed to continue as a band after The Black Parade.
My Chemical Romance was first thought of as a concept by frontman Gerard Way following the 9/11 attacks. Way was then working for Cartoon Network in New York City, when he thought, “Fuck art. I’ve gotta get out of the basement. I’ve gotta see the world. I’ve gotta make a difference,” as he later told Spin magazine.
And so he did. Abandoning his art for My Chem was probably the wisest thing he ever did, although he still continues writing short stories and creating comic book series, like The Umbrella Academy. In any case, people loved My Chemical Romance for the dramatic music, the amazing concepts behind each album and Way’s gifted personality.
Three years after the release of their fourth album (Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys) though, and just a few months after finishing their Conventional Weapons project, everything was about to change. Despite reportedly having started working on a new album, the band suddenly announced their break-up on 22 March 2013. The statement read:
“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.”
Fans around the world were gutted, including me. Then everything started to fall into place, with Way admitting that My Chemical Romance was never meant to go beyond The Black Parade and that it was simply a project which had sadly fulfilled its purpose and even managed to go beyond that with Danger Days and Conventional Weapons.
Still, it was a hard fact to process. People were eager to get the new album in their hands and all they got, instead, was a break-up. Fans are still hoping for a reunion three years later, even though there’s really not even a glimmer of hope, especially after Way announced his solo path and released his debut solo album, Hesitant Alien, in 2014.
As for me, I am happy that MCR members are following their musical dreams and I am happy that Way is still so talented and creative that he couldn’t possibly contain himself in one big monster that My Chem turned out to be; a very consuming project that in the end deprived him of the need to try different things, more in tune with his personality and sometimes less pessimistic.
Even so, I am still kind of secretly hoping for an MCR masterpiece, a comeback record which would make me believe that great bands can stay alive and not get stagnant. Sadly, though, I know it’s not going to happen and there will hardly ever be a band like My Chemical Romance. Gerard Way was smart enough to not let his band decay; still, having us say goodbye right at their peak was too brutal. At least I got to see them live a few years ago and I am forever grateful for that.