Taking Back Sunday review by Taking Back Sunday

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  • Released: Jun 28, 2011
  • Sound: 8
  • Lyrics: 10
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 8.7 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.1 (17 votes)
Taking Back Sunday: Taking Back Sunday

Sound — 8
Taking Back Sunday return in full force for the follow up to 2009's misstep "New Again". The record, simply named "Taking Back Sunday", is the first Taking Back Sunday record for bassist Shaun Cooper and guitarist/vocalist/pianist John Nolan since 2002's "Tell All Your Friends". The album opens with a full on rock song in "El Paso". Ironically channeling Brand New, the album takes off with probably the heaviest song TBS has written to date. It then slides into the uplifting sing along "Faith (When I Let You Down)". Present is a more mature sound, like that of "New Again", but with better and more focused songwriting. The album really shifts into gear with arguably the best song on the record "Best Places To Be A Mom". Nolan's complementary vocals and lead guitar are top notch here as well as in "Sad Savior", the ballad of sorts for the album. Taking two complete left turns from the previous songs, "Who Are You Anyways?" is a pop-rocker with a great bridge, and "Money (Let It Go)" displays some surf rock basslines and a fast and catchy chorus. "This Is All Now" is probably the most beautiful song on the album. I can not find a single complaint with this song. I've found myself listening to this song dozens of times already. One of the better TBS riffs of all time makes up the intro/chorus of "This Doesn't Feel A Thing Like Falling", and in a way is kind of the last up note for the album. The album finishes with "Since You're Gone" and "You Got Me", two solid rock songs but nothing better than the previous songs. The record wraps up with the slow ballad "Call Me In The Morning", a lackluster ballad with very uninspiring vocal melodies.

Lyrics — 10
I've always been an avid fan of Adam Lazzara's awkward vocal approach and writing style. His unique phrasing and snarling vocal style never seems tired or generic. John Nolan is back with his signature rough no nonsense approach to vocals. Nolan is one of my all time favorite vocalists and one I've always mimicked when singing in the car. His parts on the album may not be as memorable as the ones featured on "Tell All Your Friends", but are just as every bit as passionate and beautiful.

Overall Impression — 8
For anyone who had hopes of a "Tell All Your Friends" Pt. II once the Cooper/Nolan reunion was announced, you may need to go into this album with an open mind. It is certainly not a Pt. II to any of Taking Back Sunday previous work, but more of a further evolution of the band. While this is nothing short of a great album by the Long Islanders, it seems like the more mature sound they're progressing towards isn't really Taking Back Sunday. Maybe it's because of my attachment to "Tell All Your Friends" (one of my top 10 favorite albums of all time), but that is by no means me telling you not to enjoy this album. There is plenty for the casual and hardcore music fan o love here, but maybe not as much for a Taking Back Sunday purist.

9 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Amaseng wrote: This album is so bad, I used to love Taking Back Sunday.
    I think you're on drugs. This is their best album.
    I wouldn't say it's their best or worst. It has some very strong parts but then a few boring sections. Still overall it's a well rounded album that I can sit and listen to.
    I don't agree that this is their best album compared to their TAYF album, but there is something special about this album. I was a huge Taking Back Sunday fan but tried hard to keep my loyalty when the band acquired new members. And album after album, this band just seemed to pull away from what originally captivated their fan base. So I think this album was a fresh start. They are back on track to making good music again. I am sure their next album is going to be something to remember.
    Good for them. I read the AP article and they had to go through some major shit. AWESOME album.
    i don't know why everyone hates New Again, I became a fan a little after Louder Now caught my attention, and I've grown to love their back catalog as well. This album is what i was hoping for. They've matured, and the content isn't exactly all that heavy, and i'd love for them to go in that direction, but it's everything i've come to expect from them. New Again was really good, "Everything Must Go", "Sink into Me", "Summer Man" even the b-side "Winter Passing" was awesome the second review just kinda needlessly kicked it like a dog coming into his review.
    It is most definitely not their best album but it isn't their worst. I liked it better than Louder Now, but WWYTB, TAYF, and New Again still beat it for me.
    I found this to be a big dissapointment, a very big one, the only song I like from it was Best Places, I miss the guitar work of Fred Mascherino and the unmistakable bass guitar style of Matthew Rubano. Shaun Cooper and John Nolan are very bland musicians with little or no musical knowledge, and it shows, LouderNow will always be the greatest opus as far as their musical composition goes, and strictly speaking, Fred Mascherino and Matt Rubano, were the best things to happen yet to Taking Back Sunday. Where You Want To Be and LouderNow show far more better composition and than this new ablum and Tell All Your Friends. All opinion residing, they have officially become a sellout band , no better than pop stars