My Chemical Romance hold a special connection with their fans and they put that on full display in Milton Keynes this week.
On Thursday, the emo legends took to the stage for the first of three stadium shows in the city as part of their comeback tour across the UK, with the gigs originally planned for June 2020 before the pandemic hit.
It’s being a long road to get to these special concerts, and MCR were aware that a number of fans who booked tickets at the beginning of 2020 died during the pandemic.
During the first Stadium MK show, frontman Gerard Way held up a flag listing the names of those who couldn’t be at the shows to pay tribute in a poignant and personal way.
At the top of the flag as a nod to My Chem’s anthem Welcome To The Black Parade, with the words: ‘Your memory will carry on.’
Before unfurling the tribute, Gerard said: ‘So, this is kind of crazy because we played – this is our third show, we played two shows.
‘I think actually it was the first night where we were up there – you know, we’re f**king having a good time. And I was talking about like said, “It’s been two and a half years, how does it feel?” and things like that.
‘It occurred to me later, after the second show, that there was a bunch of people that were probably going to be at these shows that aren’t here with us anymore.
‘So, I think it was yesterday, a friend of mine told me that there were some people on the internet that had gotten a list – as best they could – of names of people that were gonna come to the shows.’
He held up the flag as the audience – and his bandmates – applauded in an emotional moment, and added a ‘thank you’ before the band launched into a rendition of Skylines and Turnstiles, which opens with the line: ‘You’re not in this alone.’
MCR – who played their official comeback show in Los Angeles in October 2019 following their breakup in 2013 – marked the start of their comeback tour with performances at the Eden Project on May 16 and 17, while they’ll be at Stadium MK against on May 21 and 22 before moving around the country.
Already, they have delighted fans with a different set list each night, performing classics like I’m Not Okay (I Promise), Teenagers and Helena alongside deep cuts including Boy Division, Skylines and Turnstiles and It’s Not A Fashion Statement, It’s a F**king Deathwish.