This Ain't A Scene, It's An Arms Race

Album: Infinity On High (2007)
Charted: 2 2

Songfacts®:

  • Fall Out Boy bass player Pete Wentz wrote this when he was frustrated with the "emo scene," which the band was strongly associated with. In the lyrics, Wentz lashes out at people who blindly follow the trend. "It's just kind of a tongue-in-cheek look at the way we are so addicted and obsessed with new arts, cultures and loves - to the point where it just becomes oversaturated," he told MTV. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Sara - Austin, TX
  • The sing-along at the end of the song was inspired by Justin Timberlake's "Senorita." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Donovan Berry - El Dorado, AR
  • This was the first single from Infinity On High. The band thought there were bigger radio hits on the album, but chose this because of its message.
  • The video contains a scene that makes reference to an incident in which nude photos of Pete Wentz leaked on the internet. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Sara - Austin, TX
  • In the video at the Pete's funeral, guitarist Joe Trohman rises out of Pete's coffin, which is reminiscent of the scene in the video for "Seize The Day" by Avenged Sevenfold where Synyster Gates comes out of M Shadow's girlfriend's coffin.

    But Wentz denied the connection in a statement to MTV, saying he'd never even seen the Avenged Sevenfold clip. The scene in the FOB video is actually an homage to Slash from Guns N' Roses' "November Rain" video. "We just thought it'd be insane to have Trohman on the lid of a coffin coming out of the ground," he added. "It's pretty much the sweetest thing ever - and definitely the most ridiculous." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Stefani - Amherst, WI
  • The Chicago-bred band made their mark with their pop-punk debut, Take This To Your Grave, in 2003 and broke through to the mainstream with their second album, From Under The Cork Tree. With their third release, the chart-topping Infinity On High, they experimented with other musical genres without straying too far from their punk roots. This track incorporates a funky dance beat inspired by lead singer Patrick Stump's childhood love of '70s soul music.
  • Inspired by the 2005 Nicolas Cage film Lord Of War, which tells the story of an illegal arms dealer, Wentz used war imagery in the lyrics as a call to arms. Not in the literal sense, he told MTV, "more in the way that you sometimes need to just talk to yourself in the mirror."
  • The music video, directed by Alan Ferguson, is a parody of the stereotypical celebrity lifestyle. The clip opens with Fall Out Boy wrapping up their earlier video for From Under The Cork Tree's "Dance, Dance," only the audience is filled with cardboard cutouts instead of actual fans. Now famous from the breakthrough success of the album, they head back out into the world with the paparazzi tracking their every move. The band's studio shenanigans and party antics are broadcast in tabloid headlines. At one particularly wild bash in a hotel room, Pete is launched through a window and falls to his death.

    Among the mourners at his funeral are Buffy The Vampire Slayer actors Seth Green and Michelle Trachtenberg, Wentz's "Dance, Dance" date (who's making out with the deer boy from "Sugar We're Going Down"), Travie McCoy of Gym Class Heroes, the teenage girl from "Grand Theft Autumn," and William Beckett of The Academy Is… reprising his vampire role from "A Little Less Sixteen Candles, A Little More 'Touch Me'." Sean O'Keefe, who produced Fall Out Boy's debut album, also appears as the priest.

Comments: 38

  • Makayla from Springfield This is not a parody for Avenged Sevenfold! He's supposed to be Slash. This has been confirmed in an interview.
  • Moose from NoThe thing is, there’s a difference between emos and emo music. Their genre is definitely not emo, and I doubt any of them ever fully identified as emo(probably more punk) but hey, if they ever did, that doesn’t mean the music they’re playing is emo. Even though, at times, it can be music that people who identify as emo listen to.
  • Megan from Stevenson, AlTHIS IS AMAZING!!! This my favorite song of FOB's. :)
  • Scott from Nashville, TnHmm... Odd.... I didn't think at all of the whole emo scene and how people associated Fall Out Boy with them at the time. I actually took the lyrics to literally compare the world of the relationships of singers and songwriters to that of an actual arms race in which songwriters are providing singers and bands with the necessary tools to "destroy" the competition in the arms race. Tell me what you think about that, I think it's quite interesting.
  • Laura from Bham, United KingdomFall Out Boy are not emo, and don't self harm guys!
  • Randi from Culpeper Killed Superman, Vappl who have heard the new cd i was just wondering whats a chicago thigh?
  • Claire from Las Vegas, NvFall Out Boy isn't emo unless they come out and said they are (forgive me, I don't know if they did or not), and neither is My Chemical Romance (I KNOW they're not emo). Get over it. If you're looking for an emo band, go with a group in the alternative-screamo genre like Hawthorne Heights. And it's not the true emos that are stupid. It's those who pretend to be just because it's popular, or just to get attention. I've been there, done that. Last year, I tried to be a normal/preppy person for the sake of a few girls who had an unfair control over the social balance of my school. Believe me, it's not worth it. Just be whatever you are.
  • Taylor from Kelowna, Canadafirst of all emos rock, i do like my chemical romance but y wouldnt u comment that on one of their songs??
    and i would like to c thos epics 2 ;)
  • Loz from Melbourne, Australia Emo's are stupid. All the best bands are getting labled as emo's just because they wear black or play punk/rock. your only emo if you say you are.

    anyway, in the film clip for this ain't a scene, during the funeral all the other characters from other FOB film clips are there.....
    eg: evil vampire from 16 candles
    the girl from dance dance
    the guy with antlers from sugar w'ere going down.

    i thought that was neat
  • Jimmy from Lancaster, Cai think this song is about like, people only liking certain things, just because the "cool" ppl do. like the line "Ban wagons full, please catch another." and also about people who hate being the ones who are rejected, just dont worry about fitting, and do your own thing, like the line in the sing-along "all the boys who didnt love, and all the girls who's lips couldnt move fast enough, sing, until your lungs give out."
  • Madalyn from Greensburg, Panow i'm just an outsider on this one...cause i really like 60's and 50's music...and a little bit of 90's alternative rock...i know strange...but for being a band of today...they are super talented i can tell through their guitar chords and set ups..that they are very complex...but then again i might not know what i'm talking about cause i'm self taught and i don't know all of the terminology for guitars...they will definatly leave a mark on a decade...just like rick james left a mark on the 80's
  • Christina from Peekskill, Nyyou suck joe from bellingham washington!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! no taste in music. and fall out boy rocks!!!! yes you have a right to your own opinion but don't bash people!!! all the members of fob are awesome but mostly Peter Lewis Kingston Wentz III!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! rawr!!!
  • Ranna from Boondocks, IaJoe, Bellingham, WA if Natalie is immature for posting that then how immature are you??

    or maybe you're mature, but you just don't have a life?

    Why else would you sit at your computer, search for a band that you don't even like, comment on their lyrics, then check back in to see what everyone else is saying??

    Everyone has different tastes in everything, including music. Just accept that and move on - maybe to a page that has a band you actually LIKE.
  • Ashley from Ft. Lauderdale, FlI love Fall Out Boy and this song (in its original form), but i do agree that FOB should stay away from remixes with rappers.
  • Sara from Medford, NjEHHH there pretty good....i like this song and a few others. but they are kinda sell out-ish. they kinda went hip hop. you can tell especially since they had a remix. no band should ever interfer with hip hop or rap...thats not like a punk rock thing to do. All the other bands never did that. rap is the complete opposite of punk (emo also).its ironic. Even the guy from jimmy eat world said that.
  • Ali from Nk, Sdwell i think the lines "i am an arms dealer fitting you with weapons in the form of words" is like saying.. well arm dealers were people who sold guns so he's saying that the lyrics he writes are like weapons that people use to fight over. they fight over their meaning so to speak. like one person says "oh his lyrics mean such and such" and then another person says "no they mean such and such" so basically he's saying he like giving people something to fight with.
  • Joe from Bellingham, Wa***I think Joe, Bellingham, WA should go die in a pit. And the band member Joe is way to skilled to share a name with this annoying person.
    - Natalie, Chiago, IL***

    wow, thats mature. How old are you? 9? You know this band is terrible and pathetic, so instead of stating that they're good (which is impossible), you have to state that I'm annoying. Everyone knows FOB promotes the death of Rock & Roll and Punk. They also promote the the uprising of mindless generic no-talent cookie cutter pop punk. Oooohh! There is a Joe in FOB. I think there's a reason nobody knows him but Die Hard FOB fans.
  • Krissy from Boston, MaGreat song. This is such a good band. Chris has a good point about how much the girls comments are just about how cute Pete is. But Chris were girls if we see a cute guy we talk and gush about him. It's just the way it is and nothing can really be done. Yes Pete is cute but without everyone else u wouldn't have the band. And if it wasn't for Pete u wouldn't have Panic! At The Disco cause he signed them under his record label. Anyway just amazing.
  • Morgan from Gresham, Orfall out boy are not sellouts...if any band has stuck to their guns and not been influenced by the media and the music scene, it's them. i respect that a lot, others would be P!ATD, MCR, and madina lake, (u might have not heard of them, they're kinda new)
  • Christina from Peabody, Maits stupid to say that fall out boy is sell out- if you say that then your against their success
  • Anne from Chicago, Ilfob are not sell outs and if you were a true fan then youd kno that pete also dosent agree with the views of how are country is run today so hes nto JUST referring to the music scence,and im not gonna swoon over him, i think joe and adny deserve some more credit ppl, and pete is more than just a hot....cute...amazing guy!
  • Chris from Abingdon, Vahow sad, all of these comments are about pete wentz, oh my god hes so sexy *swoons* grow the **** up... kay im done... now... imho, the song is talking about the modern day music scene, saying how its not about the music any more, its a race to see who can get to the top, be better than everyone else, its saying the music scene is going to hell, and that everyone is selling out, ironically, again, in my opinion, fall out boy themselves are sell outs
  • Kimberleigh from Hoston, Txi'm with christina but don't get me wrong pete's cute but the whole band does not revole around him the band would not be the same without patrick joe and andy i love them all and think they are all cute
  • Christy from St.marys, CanadaLots of the people have jumped on the I Love Pete Wentz Bandwagon.Sorry to break your heart, but theres more to life then Pete.
  • Christy from St.marys, CanadaBasically its about the media's perspective on them.
  • Liquid Len from Ottawa, Canada"And the band member Joe is way to skilled"
    Hahaha. This is about SONG facts, not facts on how you think a band member is hot, Natalie.
  • Natalie from Chiago, IlI think Joe, Bellingham, WA should go die in a pit. And the band member Joe is way to skilled to share a name with this annoying person.
  • Christina from Sam's Town, Vaok, first stop following the "OMG PETE WENTZ" trend. there are 4 people in the band and he's not the whole thing himself. actually, there's no second, except patrick has an amazing voice and he can do a lot with it
  • Gavin from Sydney, Australiathe remix with kanye west is an absolute joke
  • Luke from Manchester, EnglandGreat song tho' I do have to admit and hey - Punctuation, capital letters where needed and look... A full stop!!
  • Luke from Manchester, EnglandYou lot should stop being fashionable with Emo and learn about punctuation and spelling
  • Kelsi from I-town(ionia), MiPete is hot.....and the part where he goes ohohoh...is awsome
  • Natalie from Chicago, IlThis song is awesome! People always jump in on what the 'cool' people are doing! Not cool! I love Pete! He is so hot!
  • Soyboy from Syracuse, Nyfob IS awesome their possible my favorite band on earth. I dont even think their emo, except Pete, i mean look at him , possibly Mike Hurley but lets keep that on the D.L
  • Katherine from Akron, OhWell they do have better songs on that cd but this ones pretty good,I agree that "Thanks for the mmrs" is the best one on the cd
  • Sara<3 from Austin, Txomg... my first song fact...
    *squeal*

    hee hee, sorry. i'm gonna be serious.
    i love this song and i respect FOB a great deal. there need to be more musicians like Pete who arent afraid to do thier own thing, regardless of the labels placed upon them.
  • Jessica from Hotplace, AzLove fall out boy
    Love Pete
    Love this song

    Best song on the album was thks fr th mmrs
  • Sabine from Cologne, GermanyIt`s no wonder that they are compared with the Emo scene... Have been on a Concert and there were 3/4 of the people Emo...(Or just looking like them...I can`t say wheter they have all been straight to that or not)
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