On September 16th 2016, Taking Back Sunday released their latest album ‘Tidal Wave.’ It marked a new era for Taking Back Sunday – less emo, and well, more of an expression of their lives. Since the ages of everyone’s MSN names being “the truth is that you could slit my throat and with my one last gasping breath I’d apologise for bleeding on your shirt,” (cue OH OOOOOH) the men behind Taking Back Sunday have grown in to families and are fathers. This isn’t to say ‘Tidal Wave’ isn’t the TBS we have all come to love over the years, it’s a mature kind of nostalgic. An album that will more than likely guarantee you to listen ‘Cute without the ‘E” before you you finish your TBS music binge.
“The Smiths made a whole bunch of sad boys like us.”
The release of ‘Tidal Wave’ also meant a tour to promote that new album. It’s pretty certain that if every 2000’s emo kid didn’t squeal aloud, then they definitely squealed internally. Unfortunately for us Welshies, TBS didn’t announce any shows on our side of the UK. This was not going to stop us, so we traveled to Manchester – if there’s anything I’ve always dreamed of, it’s screaming ‘You’re so last summer’ at the top of my lungs while staring at Adam Lazzara. (p.s he’s still as beautiful as ever.) After what seemed like an eternity of waiting and traveling and rushing to the merch stand, we were finally waiting on the balcony of Manchester’s o2 Ritz.
Milestones was the first band to take the stage and attempt to liven up the crowd. As a band new to myself and no doubt many others, it really didn’t take them long to get us moving at all. They’re stage presence was outstanding – they were interactive, they were fun and by god, were they good. Sure, there were a few minor blips like the odd screech of the amps but that didn’t deter the crowd from enjoying their entire set. There was an insane vocal range on the singer, amazing talents from the guitars and the bass and drums combined were moving the crowd involuntary. Their music is available on Spotify, you can find them here. If you’re fans of Frank Iero and Taking Back Sunday, they’re definitely worth the listen. Frank Iero andthe Patience garnered their own fan crowd at the show. Even waiting in line to get in there were people in Frank Iero shirts and notebooks in hand covered in My Chemical Romance and Frank Iero stickers clearly hoping for a meet and greet. I think the majority wore more merch supporting Frank Iero than there were for Taking Back Sunday, until of course the merch stand got raided.
Luckily, the majority of the Frank Iero set list was covered on camera that you can find here if the video above doesn’t work. It’s easy to see the excitement he generated from bouncing fans, circle pits opening up and the amount of crowd surfing that was happening. If it’s one thing I’ve got to say for Frank Iero andthe Patience is that he’s much, much better live. The atmosphere that surrounded his set list was nothing short of epic. Whoever was on lights done an amazing job all night, but as you can see from the video above, the lights were perfect and on point for Iero’s set. It’s surprising the fans had enough energy left to hear all their favourite Taking Back Sunday anthems blasted from loud speakers with overwhelming bass.
Taking Back Sunday, for me, was the best damn show I’ve been to in a very long time. It was a rocky start, to be totally honest. It was like the fans wasn’t sure how to react to this band who gave us our teenage anthems being in front of them. But, when it was time to bust out tunes from the ‘Tell All Your Friends’ album, the crowd went insane. It was surreal seeing them – to see Adam Lazzara just as lively on stage as he is in the videos. To see the guy that was my desktop background for many of years actually swing around the microphone with my own eyes AND never fail to grab it was spectacular as it was. To even hear the songs exactly like they are on your home speakers. There were times when the crowd was so pumped that our voices combined completely drowned out the speakers. It even made the guys on stage smile multiple times. It’s fair to say it was just an awesome time for everyone involved. Even admitting his failed jokes on stage and at times just wanting to talk, when a fan shouted to “play some music,” Lazzara thanked him for getting him back on track.
Usually, when a band tours to promote their new album, many of fans in the crowd will be unresponsive to the songs from that album. Personally, I spend so much time listening to music that I listened to ‘Tidal Wave’ extensively and without reading any reviews thought that fans would have been turned off the maturity of the album. This show put those thoughts in their grave, in fact, every one there was all for ‘Tidal Wave‘ and every song from the album they played. Of course, the older hits generated a whole more bunch of energy, but the latest album got an amazing reaction.
(Taking Back Sunday set list taken from setlist.fm)
Tonight, Taking Back Sunday play in Nottingham’s Rock City and then end the UK tour in Norwich’s UEA on the 18th. Frank Iero andthe Patience follows them on their tour until the 25th of February in Utrecht, Netherlands. These two acts are definitely a must see for all pop punk/ rock fans around the globe, and I advise any gig-goers to try their shows out and see just how much of a good time they’ll end up having.