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Taking back Sunday – Tidal Wave

Long Island legends Taking Back Sunday are one of the hardest working, most innovative alternative-rock bands in the scene today. While some may think the group peaked in the early 2000s, frozen in time during emo’s heydey, the band is as passionate, driven, and experimental as ever.

In an effort to continue pushing their rock in every direction, today Taking Back Sunday releases their seventh full-length album, Tidal Wave, and it proves they are still willing to take chances while armed with a more mature outlook on life.

With Tidal Wave, Taking Back Sunday is plunging headfirst into the sonic unknown with remarkably catchy music infused with a strong Americana influence. The album kicks off with TBS’s signature explosive rock courtesy of heavy opener “Death Wolf,” but the rock influences then run in every direction: Tom Petty, The Ramones, and even more punk bands like Dropkick Murphys, whose influence is heard clearly on the title track.

The band previewed “Tidal Wave” at this summer’s Taste of Chaos, and the track translates the band’s lengthy musical history with a galloping energy.

Thematically, Taking Back Sunday sticks with what they know best: nostalgia, love, and religious undertones (see the infectious chorus of “Holy Water”). Adam Lazarra is one of the most iconic frontmen in recent alternative-rock history, and it’s incredible that his voice holds up and he can still inject unrestrained emotion (“Call Come Running”) and intimate reflection (“I Felt It Too”) into his every vocal part.

Lazarra said, “With our first records, we were writing from the perspective of 17, 18-year-old kids, and now it’s like, as you grow old, the blinders get pulled back and you have a different way of looking at the world. There’’s more of an Americana feel. But we realize anything we do is going to sound like Taking Back Sunday.”

That Americana feel is most apparent on tracks like “You Can’t Look Back” with its rollicking drums and acoustic guitars. Guitarist John Nolan said, “It’s the culmination of things we’ve tried over the past two records. I think it’s the strongest record we’ve done since getting back together. We’’ve freed ourselves up to go in new directions.”

It’s not easy to maintain musical creativity and drive over years of recording and performing all over the world, but with Tidal Wave, Taking Back Sunday proves the energy that exploded this band onto the scene is as high as ever. They may be exploring different styles, but Taking Back Sunday is still expressing powerful emotions through unbridled rock, just like they always have.

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