Among the many swindles perpetuated by the music biz payola, hidden ticket fees, Milli Vanilli one of the biggest has been selling Fall Out Boy as emo, punk, or any other snarling, eyelinered iteration of angry-boys-with-guitars. In truth, a power-pop heart beats beneath those no-day-job tattoos, and their fourth album, Folie á Deux (which loosely translates as ''a madness shared by two''), is testament to that, even if it sometimes flags.
Folie kicks off smartly with the near-perfect radio valentine ''Disloyal Order of Water Buffaloes,'' a towering guitar anthem built on wedding-march organs, thundering drums, and singer Patrick Stump's limber vocals. It's a feat quickly followed by stadium fillers ''America's Suitehearts'' and ''I Don’t Care.''
So far, so great. Alas, the band increasingly suffers from Celebrity Meta Syndrome, in which well-known artists end up singing mostly about the problems associated with...being well-known artists. Still, the band's over-the-topness serves them well; Stump makes lines like ''Why why why won't the world revolve around me?'' come off as satire rather than narcissism, and the Elton-esque ''What a Catch, Donnie,'' with its boldface backup crew Elvis Costello and Gym Class Heroes' Travis McCoy, among others is perhaps the most fun legally allowed in a power ballad. (Less wow? Middling cameos by Pharrell Williams and Deborah Harry.) Passionate, splashy, and ambitious, Folie isn't flawless by any stretch, but it's no folly either. B
Download This: Keep checking the band's MySpace to listen to songs from the new album