Tours: John Nolan’s Birthday Spectacular

John Nolan John Nolan, or Taking Back Sunday and Straylight Run fame has announced that he will be touring during the week of his birthday.  The nine date tour will feature Nolan performing songs from his two solo albums and Straylight Run discography.  Nolan comments:

“A few months ago, I had the idea to do a solo tour around the week of my birthday. Then I thought, since I’m touring around my birthday why not make every show like a birthday party… So, every night the stage will be decorated with streamers and balloons, everyone will get little party favors and I’ll play songs from my solo albums and Straylight Run’s albums and we’ll all sing and celebrate together!”

Full tour listings are below.

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All Get Out Announce US Tour

All get Out Summer Tour 17All Get Out have just announced a tour this summer, including dates with Taking Back Sunday and Every Time I Die, All Get Out are touring in support of their 2016 release Nobody Likes A Quitter.

Tickets for All Get Out‘s headline tour dates are available here

The Punk Site review of Nobody Likes A Quitter can be read here

You can view All Get Out‘s tour dates below Read More…

Tours: Taking Back Sunday / Every Time I Die / Modern Chemistry / All Get Out

taking-back-sunday-tidal-waveLong running emo staples Taking Back Sunday have announced that they will be heading on tour with direct support from Every Time I Die with Modern Chemistry and All Get Out.  The band continues to support their 2016 full length, Tidal Wave, available now via Hopeless Records.  

Tour dates are below.

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Video: Taking Back Sunday – Call Coming Running

Taking Back SundayLong running emo staples Taking Back Sunday have premiered a new music video.  The video features the song “Call Coming Running” which is lifted from their upcoming full length, Tidal Wave, released back in September 2016 via Hopeless Records.  

Watch the video below.

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‘Music for Everyone’, a compilation to support the ACLU feat. Taking Back Sunday, Anti-Flag Coming Spring ’17

Music for Everyone, a compilation project to support the ACLU which has been spearheaded by Taking Back Sunday guitarist John Nolan is due for release this spring in conjunction with Collective Confusion Records and Sub City (the charity arm of Hopeless Records). He has said this about his inspiration behind the project:

“During these next four years, I feel it’s going to be extremely important to support organizations that will stand up to the Trump administration”

Mike Colleran of Collective Confusion Records and Louis Posen, president of Hopeless Records have added:

“John [Nolan] and I had spent some time on the road together last summer during the primaries, and we were glued to the news the entire trip. I personally was shocked and saddened about some of the rhetoric that was slowly becoming more mainstream. There has been a toxic atmosphere to the political climate for years, which only seems to be getting worse. After the election, John approached me about putting together this compilation and I realized it was up to everyone, as average citizens, to do what they can to make their voices heard and to stand up and make it known that these ideas don’t represent us. I jumped on board with the project immediately, and I hope it will do some small part in making our country a better place for everyone.”

“Helping musicians connect with fans to raise funds for important organizations, like the ACLU, is at the heart of everything we do at Sub City, so we are thrilled that our friend John Nolan asked us to be a part of bringing this incredible compilation to life”

The LP will contain rare or unreleased material from the likes of Taking Back Sunday, Anti-Flag, Answering Machine, Baggage, Chris Farren, Potty Mouth, Brendan Kelley, Anthony Green, Frank Iero, Dave Hause, Sleep On It, Jared Hart, Cassino, Dead Heavens featuring Walter Schreifels, Allison Weiss and Brett Newski with more to be announced.

Pre-orders are available here: 

To read more about the ACLU’s commitment to human rights following the election, check out their recent statement.


Taking Back Sunday

Tidal Wave

Hopeless Records

Rating: 3.5/5




Tidal Wave is Taking Back Sunday‘s seventh album, while most of their peers have either broken up, faded away or reunited to capitalize on the emo scene’s wildfire revival, Taking Back Sunday have been an ever present on the scene, they’ve consistently ploughed their own furrow and continued to reinvent themselves regardless of passing trends and tastes. Tidal Wave appears to represent yet another turning point in the band’s history, Taking Back Sunday have regularly adopted fresh approaches and styles since their inception, whilst in this past these haven’t always hit the spot this latest album is one that appears to have breathed new life into the band.

Opening number, Death Wolf, takes it time getting going, a full minute of gradual atmospheric build up takes place before the song is jump started, but it’s worth the wait as this it is a fine slice of polished emo tinged punk that boasts some epic riffs. However, there is no such dramatic introduction or polish with the album’s title track, it kicks in and is a short sharp punchy punk number featuring machine gun dreaming and a chorus that just hooks you into the song. Tidal Wave continues to build layers and textures by utilising various tempos and styles, all the while maintaining an impressive level of energy, that is until you hit the half way mark when the album screeches almost to a halt with the introspective I Felt It Too, for me this track just interrupted the flow of the album and it seems to be at odds with the other eleven tracks. Any worries you might have had following this number are dispelled as the second half of the album mirrors the approach of the first half dozen tracks with a variety of styles, but this time there is no sudden halt to the proceedings, whilst the album does end on a slow burner, the epic I’ll Find A Way To Make It What You Want, it is one that fits in with the feel of the album and is a fine ending to an impressive album.

For me Tidal Wave‘s title track is the high point, but that is such a good song that isn’t in anyway a slur on the rest of the album, if you’re a fan of Taking Back Sunday you will probably have already ordered this, in fact by the time this review appears you’ve probably had it playing on repeat for a few days. One of the factors that marks this out from Taking Back Sunday‘s back catalogue is the fact that was written in the studio whilst they were recording it, rather than the album being crafted and overly anguished over beforehand. I think this approach brings a freshness and new found enthusiasm to their sound, whether this is their best album will be a subject of some debate, but what Tidal Wave definitely does bring is a new direction, and it’s one that seems to have re-energised a band that has been with us for almost two decades.

You can order Tidal Wave here

Video: Taking Back Sunday – You Can’t Look Back

Taking Back SundayLong running emo staples Taking Back Sunday have premiered a new music video.  The video features the song “You Can’t Look Back” which will appear on their upcoming full length, Tidal Wave, and is due out September 16, 2016 via Hopeless Records.  

Watch the video below.  The band last released Happiness Is back in 2014.

Read More…

Tours: Taking Back Sunday with You Blew It! / Loose Talk / Mammoth Indigo

Taking Back SundayLongstanding rockers from New York, Taking Back Sunday, announced a series of intimate club tour dates this fall in celebration of their upcoming album. You Blew It! will tour in direct support of the band, with a couple appearances from Loose Talk, and Mammoth Indigo as the opening act. Check out the tour dates below.

“Our idea is to go to the smallest clubs we can go to,” TBS vocalist Adam Lazzara said.

Lazzara also commented:

“We’d like to debut this record as honestly as we can and what better way to do that in a small club? Outside of a week there in the middle, it’s a two band bill, so we’re going to have to play for a long time.”

Taking Back Sunday’s upcoming album Tidal Wave will release on Sept. 16, 2016 via Hopeless Records. This forthcoming release serves as the band’s seventh album following Happiness Is…, which debuted in 2014.

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Taking Back Sunday Announces New Album

Taking Back SundayLong running emo staples Taking Back Sunday have announced details for their next full length.  The disc will be called Tidal Wave, and is due out September 16, 2016 via Hopeless Records.

The band last released Happiness Is back in 2014.

Tours: Taking Back Sunday

Taking Back SundayTaking Back Sunday has announced additional tour dates to their upcoming batch.  The band continues to support their latest album, Happiness Is, which is available now from Hopeless Records

Complete tour listings are below.

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Video: Taking Back Sunday – Better Homes And Gardens

Taking Back SundayTaking Back Sunday has debuted a brand new music video.  The video spotlights the track “Better Homes And Gardens” from the band’s latest album, Happiness Is, which is on sale this week at iTunes for $4.99 and available from Hopeless Records.  Vocalist Adam Lazzara comments on the direction of the video:

“Eddie (Reyes) had this wonderful idea of watching a home burn to the soundtrack of “Better Homes And Gardens… With the help of the Greensboro fire department we were able to make that happen. As I was sitting there watching the house burn, and they were running playback of the song, there couldn’t have been anything more fitting. It was very emotional.”

Check out the video below.

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Tours: Taking Back Sunday / letlive. / The Menzingers

Taking Back SundayLong Island rockers Taking Back Sunday will soon set out on a 2015 North American spring tour with Los Angeles post-hardcore band letlive. and Philadelphia punks The Menzingers. Check out the tour dates below.

With this tour Taking Back Sunday are continuing support of their 2014 release Happiness Is via Hopeless Records.

Lead vocalist Adam Lazzara said:

“Touring is probably the most rewarding thing we do as a band. Being able to look people in the eye and see what these songs mean to them as you are playing them is an experience that is hard to describe. We’ve done a lot of festival and co-headlining dates since Happiness Is was released, but we are really looking forward to our upcoming headlining dates where we can play a little bit longer and dive into the album and our catalog a bit more. We also have a few extra tracks from the Happiness Is recording which should be making an appearance around that time.”

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Taking Back Sunday Announces ‘Happiness Is: The Complete Recordings’

Taking Back SundayTaking Back Sunday has announced plans to compile the full recording sessions from their album, Happiness Is.  The collection will be titled Happiness Is: The Complete Recordings and will include all three studio b-sides and three additional acoustic renditions of album tracks.  Vocalist Adam Lazzara comments:
“There was something real sentimental and warm feeling about the acoustic demo version of “Like You Do…” Ed (Reyes) and I were staying in the saddest hotel in all of Long Island while the band was writing what would later become most of Happiness Is. This place was as close to one of those 1970s New York City hotels as I had seen in the movies and on the news growing up as you could get, the only exception being that it was on Long Island. Motel style, with ladies of the night, yelling at all hours, the works. It was the worst. I was missing home something awful, it was the worst it had been. That’s where “Like You Do” happened. In that smoky room, at that seedy hotel. I played it back on my voice recorder and it took me someplace else. I think we came pretty close to that feeling with this recording. At first we even talked about just leaving it as an acoustic song. Now we have both.”

To coincide with the release, the band has has released a new music video for the song “All The Way” which can be found along with full track listings for the CD and vinyl editions below.

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Tours: Taking Back Sunday / letlive. / The Menzingers

Taking Back Sunday 2014Long running alt-punk act Taking Back Sunday has announced plans for a Spring 2015 tour.  The tour will feature support from The Menzingers and Letlive, with the band continuing to support their latest full length, Happiness Is.   Lead vocalist Adam Lazzara expresses the band’s excitement:

“Touring is probably the most rewarding thing we do as a band.  Being able to look people in the eye and see what these songs means to them as you are playing them is an experience that is hard to describe.  We’ve done a lot of festival and co-headlining dates since Happiness Is was released, but we are really looking forward to our upcoming headlining dates where we can play a little bit longer and dive into the album and our catalogue a bit more.  We also have a few extra tracks from the Happiness Is recording which should be making an appearance around that time.”

A video teaser for the tour can be viewed below.

Read More…

Taking Back Sunday Announce Support for UK Tour

TBS 2014 TourNY Emo/Alt-Punk outfit Taking Back Sunday have announced that fellow alt rock acts Marmozets and Blitz Kids will be joining them as support on their upcoming UK tour. Both bands originate from the north of England (Yorkshire and Chesire respectively) and have released new albums in 2014.

Check out the full list of dates below.

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Taking Back Sunday and The Used Announce Co-Headlining Tour of Australia

takingbacksunday_theused2014NY based pop punk/Emo outfit Taking Back Sunday and label mates The Used have announced a series of co-headlining tour dates in Australia. The pair recently finished up a similar US tour and will now be taking that setup over to Oz in August. Both bands have also released new records on Hopeless Records in 2014.

Full dates (and ticket info) is available below:

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Taking Back Sunday – How I Met Your Mother

Taking Back Sunday 2014Taking Back Sunday is streaming a b-side from the recording sessions of their latest full length, Happiness Is…, which was released earlier this week via Hopeless Records.  The b-side is available for purchase on the band’s Flicker, Fade 7″.

Listen to the track below.

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Taking Back Sunday – Beat Up Car

Taking Back Sunday 2014Amityville, NY pop punks Taking Back Sunday have posted a new track online. Beat Up Car is taken from their upcoming full length Happiness Is, which is due to drop on March 18th via Hopeless Records. 

Listen below.

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Taking Back Sunday Stream New Song

Taking Back Sunday 2014Amityville, NY pop punks Taking Back Sunday have posted a new track online. Stood a Chance is taken from their upcoming full length Happiness Is, which is due to drop on March 18th via Hopeless Records. 

The band are hitting the road from the middle of March to promote the album, their first since 2011’s self titled effort, and sixth overall. They will be joined as co-headliners by Utah’s The Used with support from TonightAlive and Sleepwave. 

The stream of Stood a Chance is available here, and full tour dates are listed below:

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Taking Back Sunday Detail New Album, Post New Song

Taking Back SundayHopeless Records have revealed that they will be releasing Taking Back Sunday‘s new album, Happiness Is, on March 18th.

The twelve song album was produced by Marc Jacob Hudson (Saves The Day, The Swellers) and Mike Sapone (Brand New, O’Brother). The album, the band’s sixth, follows Taking Back Sunday‘s 2011 self titled effort.

Happiness Is can be pre-ordered here, while the first single, titled Flicker, Fade, can be heard below.

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Video: Adam Lazzara – Because It Works

our voicesAdam Lazzara, frontman for New York’s Taking Back Sunday, has teamed up with Rolling Stone magazine to premiere his new music video for the solo track Because It Works.

The video is below while the song itself appears on the recently released EP, I Surrender Records Presents: Our Voices, which also includes new solo material from Anthony Raneri of Bayside, Chris Conley of Saves The Day, and Vinnie Caruana of I Am The Avalanche. 

The EP can be purchased here. Read More…

Taking Back Sunday Announce DVD Releases

Taking Back Sunday - Tell All Your Friends 10Taking Back Sunday have announced the release of 2 double DVD’s on their own label, Sorry Records. Both TAYF10: Acoustic and TAYF10: Live From Starland Ballroom will be available for sale on December 10.

The acoustic film was filmed in October 2012 during the Tell All Your Friends anniversary tour at stops in Chicago and LA. The second DVD was recorded at the Starland Ballroom in New Jersey in September 2013. 

Both releases include bonus tracks. In addition, the band will release TAYF10: Acoustic on vinyl for the first time. A special deluxe edition of the double DVD will include an autographed wall plaque, sticky pass from the tour and rare CD version of the acoustic album. This package is limited to 200. 

All releases can be pre-ordered here.

Taking Back Sunday Resume Autumn Tour With Former Underoath Frontman

Taking Back SundayNY pop punk band Taking Back Sunday have announced they are resuming their fall tour with Spencer Chamberlain (Underoath) filling in for Adam Lazzara. Spencer is a good friend of Adams, and has willingly stepped in while Lazzara spends more time with his new family after his wife went unexpectedly went into labour early and gave birth to their second son on Sunday night. Adam will miss an indefinite amount of dates and the first gig with Spencer was on Friday 25th October in Melbourne, FL.

Full tour dates.

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Live Concert Review

Taking Back Sunday, Underoath, Armor For Sleep

Live (March 20th, 2007)

Northlands Agricom - Edmonton, Alberta




Frankly, I needed this.

It had been way too long since my last concert and I was eagerly counting down the days before this tour hit town. Of course, before the band that I really wanted to see hit the stage I would have to sit through one band I found boring and another that I had seen numerous times in the past. Either way, I was still excited and I was quite content with the results of the show.

First up was Armor For Sleep, a band that I, for the most part, find dull and boring. They were definitely not a band I was looking forward to seeing nor a band that I would ever have gone out of my way to see, but I was at the venue, I had paid for the ticket, I was going to see all the bands on the bill; and honestly, they surprised me a bit. The band played the few songs by them that I like, like Awkward Last Words and Car Underwater for example, and got some moderate crowd response (I was incredible surprised to see the ninjas come out during the band’s first track, but hey, what are you going to do?) However, they were seriously lacking in intensity and movement. They were stagnant and not very energetic, and I often found my mind wandering off onto other things – something which is NEVER a good sign at a concert. So not horrible, but they couldn’t hold my interest for more than a few seconds for the most part and unless they’re on opening act, I’ll probably never go to see them live again.

After a thirty minute break the lights dimmed and the crowd headed towards the stage once again for one of the best introductions I have seen for a while. Roaring through the speakers came a sound of an army approaching before you heard Gerard Butler scream “THIS IS SPARTA!“. Lights went black. Strobe lights blared and out on the stage came Underoath, the six piece Christian rock band. They picked up from that momentum and carried it through the entire set as they jumped, spat, and generally went crazy. Spencer Chamberlain’s voice, while not always being able to make out what he was saying between songs, was able to bring his screams to life; and like always Chris went wild on the keyboards and Tim, as one person I heard put it, looked like a battle dwarf. They were energetic and put on a spectacular show, the only clitches were in the sound department. A lot of the time it wasn’t that clean and you could never hear Tim’s backup vocals – but that’s what happens when you get a bigger venue.

Finally, Taking Back Sunday hit the stage.

Now, for this band, it was the little kid in me that came out. Tell All Your Friends was a CD that I fell in love with way back in 2002 and an album I still love. It had taken almost five years to the day for me to see them live (not counting the three songs they played at Warped Tour 2 years ago), but it was worth the wait.

That’s not saying there weren’t a few hiccups either, but luckily, those were mainly at the start as Adam’s voice started out slightly weak. He wasn’t putting everything into as he could, but as the show progresses his vocals improved until there were no more complaints possible.

The band ripped through a ton of their catalogue, mainly focusing on Louder Now, with only a few selections (A Decade Under The Influence and Number Five With A Bullet) from Where You Want To Be and Tell All Your Friends (Ghost Man On Third, Blue Channel). Adam wooed the crowd with his microphone tossing skills and while some songs were slightly sped up, they sounded pretty much spot on. The most surprising element of the show was when, out of nowhere, the band just jumped into Cute Without The “E” (Cut From The Team). It was right the middle of the set after getting the crowd to sign some chords back at them, and no one was expecting it there but the crowd went crazy.

For an encore, Adam came out by himself with an acoustic guitar and a harmonica. He started off with a song I could recognize but couldn’t name before merging it into Divine Intervention which went intoSexyBack (I think), back into Divine Intervention before breaking into The Killers‘ Bones and back to Divin Intervention for a final run. After that, the full band came on to end the show withMakeDamnSure before they left the stage for the night.

Despite some sound problems here and there, Taking Back Sunday put on a good show. They played most of the songs I wanted to hear and I’ll definitely be there the next time they come through town. Hopefully it won’t take five years and two CDs before that happens.

Taking Back Sunday - Self Titled

Taking Back Sunday


Warner Music

Rating: 2.5/5




Taking Back Sunday are the prime example of a band trying to grasp onto their past and ride the wave of nostalgia. Their break through album back in 2002, Tell All Your Friends, was raw, passionate and powerful; turning the New Jersey five-some into one of the front runners of the then nascent emo movement.

It was successful ride that they were unable to maintain and with each passing album (and line-up change), Taking Back Sunday became a sad imitation of itself. For their fifth album, their first self-titled album, the band once again tried to reclaim the glory days of their Tell All Your Friends era and promoted heavily the fact that Taking Back Sunday was the first record since TAYF that they actually had their original line-up in tact.

This gave them a refreshed sense of vitality that seeps into the album, ensuring that it is light-years better than the bland and forgettable New Again; but that’s not to say it’s anywhere near their landmark album.

Taking Back Sunday is a thickly produced, alternative album through and through. It’s full and crisp, better mixed than anything they’ve done before which, sadly, comes at a cost as Taking Back Sundaywould be better off with a bit more of an edge. TAYF was raw, spastic and sincere and Taking Back Sunday lacks some of that.  Even the signature duelling vocals of Adam Lazzara and John Nolan fails to be as striking as they originally were. While it’s nice to hear the two vocalists trade off lines, they’re no longer yelling over one another with alternating lines but rather doing slightly delayed harmonies repeating the same lines. It adds a little depth, yes, but no where near as striking as they could have been had they delivered different lyrical couplets.

Despite my generally negative tone, there are moments of entertainment scattered throughout Taking Back Sunday; and luckily, there’s enough of them to keep me coming back for more. The lead single, Faith (When I Let You Down), is a energetic, open-armed anthem; like a heavier-rock version of Angels & Airwaves with just the right amount of loud meets quiet sections. Formulaic? Perhaps, not that I really care.

Sad Savior slows it down, showcasing Lazzara’s vocals in it’s flowing chorus and This Is All Now is the first song that glints at the duelling vocals that make Taking Back Sunday a house hold name almost a decade ago. The sparse, four minute closer Call Me In The Morning could be described as the album’s must-have ballad, yet it doesn’t come off as overly cheesy but rather actually fairy moving.

Located throughout are a few duds – El Paso was a horrible choice to open the album with – and several forgettable tunes (Money (Let It Go) along with You Got Me are just two of the examples). Lazarra’s lyrics aren’t as striking as they once were, as he seems to be going through the motions at times. But when delivered with the right sense of passion (faked or not), even the most generic line has the potential to incite some sort of powerful response.

On Taking Back SundayTaking Back Sunday are attempting to re-create the glory days of Tell All Your Friends and are falling short of it by a long shot. Nevertheless, it still remains their strongest material in years – be it for the nostalgic element or the few odd gems hidden amongst all the rough.

Taking Back Sunday - New Again

Taking Back Sunday

New Again

Warner Music

Rating: 2/5




A band is more than just one person, its a group of people playing together and making music. What makes a band special is not something that rests solely on the shoulders of one member but instead it’s how the different members feed off one another that makes them truly memorable. That’s why neither Angels & Airwaves or +44 were as good as Blink-182 were, because they were missing the spark that the trio had together – separated they were good but just not as good.

That, unfortunately, is Taking Back Sunday‘s problem as well. Their breakout 2002 album Tell All Your Friends was a masterpiece because of how everyone in the band worked off of one another – particularly John Nolan and Adam Lazzara. That happened for only one album before Nolan and bassist Shaun Cooper left to start another band and right away you could tell they were missing that certain spark that made them so fantastic. That’s not saying that Where You Want To Be and Louder Now were disappointing, far from it – they were in fact quite good as Lazzara found a way to work quite well with newly appointed guitarist Fred Mascherino.

Fast forward to the present and Taking Back Sunday‘s lineup has changed once again. Yet another new guitarist has come into play which has once again changed the musical landscape that is TBS and I can’t shake the feeling that New Again is missing that spark that made Tell All Your Friends so genius.

Now, New Again is still Taking Back Sunday – that’s hard to deny. Lazzara’s vocals are still present. Eddie Reyes’ (one of the few members who has been there since the beginning) guitar work can still be picked out. They still have the distinctive staccato emo sound that they popularized but have warped it into more of a rock sound too, a continual evolution that has been present on all of their releases.

But New Again is missing something. The dueling and overlapping vocals are nonexistent, only really appearing once or twice throughout the entire album. It feels more polished than anything the band has done before, covering their small club sound with an arena rock shine which, in turns, makes it seem constrained and held back. Lyrically, New Again falls equally as flat. Where they used to write lyrics ripped with ironic venom and fascinating turns of phrases, very few lyrics are even memorable let alone quotable (the fact that there isn’t a lyrics sheet is also a disappointing aspect of the album).

The best songs are the slower ones, like Capital M-E, Summer, Man and Where My Mouth Is – the later of which is could be the follow-up to My Name is Fred Astaire. As a whole though, the record is just missing something, making it oddly forgettable. Lazzara and Reyes are missing the aspect that previous members brought to the table – so much so that the best songs of the album are the ones that are about them.

Taking Back Sunday - Louder Now

Taking Back Sunday

Louder Now

Warner Music

Rating: 4/5




Blink182, Green Day, Ramones, The Used, My Chemical Romance, Fall Out Boy. No matter what you think about these bands, it’s always slightly difficult to review albums by them. Why? Because you have nothing to compared them to. They are, whether you like it or not, innovators are their respected style – and they are the bands that are used when people try to describe other bands. They say, “Oh, it’s likeGreen Day‘s Dookie album” or “Fall Out Boy‘s From Under The Cork Tree“. They are the bands that reviewers use to describe other albums by – and Taking Back Sunday is one of those bands. So how, pre tell, can I review this new album by them? What can I compared them to? I guess I’ll have to compare them to themselves, because they have maintained their signature style – and anyone who, like me, was disappointed by their lackluster sophomore album, will be pleasantly surprised once you give Louder Now a spin.

I don’t know what happened in between albums, but on Louder NowTaking Back Sunday have gone back to what made them so popular in the first place. No, it’s not an exact replica of Tell All Your Friends, and it’s not as good as that either (but really, that’s just an ideal dream, without Nolan in the lineup, I’ll be very surprised if they ever create something as mind blowing as TAYF) – but nevertheless,Taking Back Sunday have crafted an album that carries nearly the same intensity of their breakout debut rather

The dueling vocals are back, with Lazzara’s signature vocals leading the ways. The music is harder. The riffs more complex, they even have a few guitar solos thrown in there (Miami). And the song structure is just more complete and complex than anything that was on Where You Want To Be. Songs like Liar (It Takes One To Know One), Error Operator, MakeDamnSure, What’s It Feel Like To Be A Ghost and sure-to-be-future single Twenty-Twenty Surgery instantly grab the listener’s attention, and even without the lyric booklet you are sing along after only a few listens.

Louder Now is a Taking Back Sunday album for Taking Back Sunday fans. It’s a heavier, more rock oriented album that, while it’s not quite as good as TAYF, is leaps and bounds beyond anything onWhere You Want To Be. Even with no other band to compare it to, it’s safe to say that once the masses finally hear the album, they will not be disappointed.

Taking Back Sunday - Live From Orensanz

Taking Back Suday

Live From Orensanz

Warner Music

Rating: 2.5/5




Live albums are meant to capture a perfect moment in time. To transform the random, hap hazardousness of a band at the top of their game and preserve it for eternity. There are live albums that have gone and become the corner stone of a band’s catalogue – a historically significant release away from the studio that will be talked about for generations to come. These are records that somehow, someway capture something unique – a mistake here, a comment yelled from the crowd, an unexpected moment of passion or a band so far out of their element in a way that shouldn’t work but miraculously does. These are the albums you want. Johnny Cash At Folsom PrisonJames Brown Live At The ApolloBruce Springsteen Live In DublinThe Who Live At LeedsNirvana MTV Unplugged Live In New York.

But what happens when you take away the unexpected and the mistakes? What happens when you siphon out the crowd? You get an album that is far too safe. Yes, it sounds good and can show a band in a unique way but still feels just too safe.

That’s what happens with Taking Back Sunday’s latest live offering, Live From Orensanz. An acoustic performance recorded at a New York synagogue built with a Gothic flair, Live from Orensanz has the potential to become one of those unique releases that could be talked about for years to come but never realizes that potential.  Sadly, the band’s decision to record two shows and merge the best moments of them all together into one “performance” dulls the effect of the record and ultimately takes away from the “Live” aspect of the album.

From a straight forward perspective, Live from Orensanz delivers quite well. Opening with the energetic MakeDamnSureTaking Back Sunday breathes new life into the songs by stripping them down. It increases the passion into the songs, showcasing Adam Lazzarra’s voice way better than any recording since their debut. His soft delivery on Your Own Disaster, backed by soothing piano melody and delicate backing vocals, sends shiver down the spine; while the appearance of the string metal band Judgement Day on Everything Must Go pushes the song light-years ahead of its studio counterpart.

These moments make the album memorable and unique – the way a live album should be. Sadly these moments are too few and far between and the rest – while individually enjoyable – stills feels far too safe. The recording quality is too perfect. The crowd is nearly non-existent  as they only showing up on the closer Cute Without The E (despite a comment from Lazarra saying that they’re “loud as hell”).

There’s no crackle or pop as the songs fade in and out of one another without reprieve or banter ; and when they do have banter, it feels jarring as it cuts too quickly from banter into the next song (see the transition between Set Phasers To Stun and Everything Must Go).

Live From Orensanz is not a bad release by any means. It shows the band in a new light and creates a nice ambiance but a real live set – instead of two spliced together – would’ve been better.

Taking Back Sunday Sign to Hopeless Records, Announce Fall Tour and New Album in 2014

Taking Back SundayTaking Back Sunday are the latest band to sign to Hopeless Records after the recent signings of Bayside and Neck Deep.

They have announced that their new full length will be out in early 2014. The band already have several tracks completed, working with Marc Jacob Hudson (Saves the Day, The Swellers) and are heading to Long Island later this month to complete recording with Mike Sapone (Brand New).

Eddie Reyes, Taking Back Sunday guitarist spoke about teaming up with Hopeless Records:

 “We are extremely excited to be a part of the Hopeless Records Family and look forward to working with them. I have great respect for the label and the bands they support and we respect how hard they work together.  We also can’t wait for everyone to hear our new album and we thank them in advance for their help in making that happen.”

The band will be on the road this autumn, previewing new material. Full dates below:

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The Swellers Announce New Album

SwellersFlint, MI punks The Swellers have announced their new record, The Light Under Closed Doors will drop on October 29th via No Sleep Records. The album was produced by the band and recorded with Marc Hudson (Saves The Day, Taking Back Sunday) who helped strip the bands sound down to something slightly more raw and honest 2012’s Running Out Of Places To. According to drummer Jonathan Diener this album came together in a different way to its predecessors:

 “The way the songs were written, the way it was recorded, even the artwork all have this organic feeling about them. We went back to basics and let the songs and emotion do the talking for us.” Guitarist/Vocalist Nick Diener adds:

“The feeling of writing and recording our EP was incredible, so we wanted to do something similar for this record. You can nod your head through the whole thing. Marc Hudson did an amazing job capturing what I feel is the first record that sounds like us in a live setting. Very real. This is a great record to introduce ourselves to any new music fan who might have missed us, and a great reintroduction to anyone aware of The Swellers. I think our fans have grown with us, which is a really cool thing.”

The band have also made Should, a track from The Light Under Closed Doors available for streaming via MTV.

Tours: Man Overboard

Man OverboardMan Overboard have announced a late fall tour with guests Never Shout Never. The tour kicks off at November 20 in Des Moines, LA and warps up in New Jersey. They will be joined by MOD SUN and Me Like Bees

Of course, this isn’t the only tour they have planned as they are currently in the middle of an east coast with Major League. Following that, they will hit the west coast with Taking Back Sunday and Bayside as well as the UK with New Found GloryLess Than Jake, and The Story So Far.

A complete list of tour dates can be seen below.

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