Signs of a good show include (but are not limited to): hearing loss, sore throat, and inability to sleep because you’re just too pumped.
That’s how I felt about the Taking Back Sunday show on Friday.
Mark, Eddie, Adam, John, and Shaun.
The night started off on a great note after a delicious dinner at Factory Girl, and it just got better from there.
The first band to go on was letlive. I’ve heard that their frontman, Jason Butler, is insane during live performances – literally hanging off of rafters, and generally throwing himself around – and they weren’t kidding. I’m surprised there aren’t more casualties during a letlive. show, since he throws himself around the stage like a man possessed, but I guess his bandmates are used to it and know when to take a step back. If you’re not familiar with letlive.’s discography, their set sounds like organized chaos, but I was happy when they played the one song of theirs that I know, “Banshee (Ghost Fame)”.
Next up were The Menzingers. I’ve heard of them (funny story, I accidentally confused them with The Marmozets when this tour was announced, but the two bands are nothing alike). They were like a weird hybrid of Man Overboard, The Wonder Years, and A Day to Remember (the screamy bits), but they worked. I enjoyed them, though sometimes it felt like they were playing one very long song (they didn’t really talk in between songs).
Then it was TBS-time. We’ve seen them before, most recently at Riot Fest in September (and before that, last April) and they put on such a good performance. This was no exception.
First of all, they opened with “Flicker, Fade”. It’s such a good song, guys, I can’t even describe it. Ro and I always lose our breaths halfway through, but it has an almost cathartic effect on us.
Like last time, they seemed to focus on three albums: 2002’s Tell All Your Friends, 2006’s Louder Now, and 2014’s Happiness Is. I don’t actually mind, since those are my preferred albums (I could use a little more from 2011’s self-titled album), but for the most part, the set was near perfect.
They even played some “new” songs from the deluxe version of Happiness Is that came out a few months ago, including “How I Met Your Mother”.
The crowd is always so strange at these shows. They’re (arguably) “older” than a lot of shows we go to (eg. All Time Low, where the majority of the audience is under 20), but that means that they spend a lot more time drinking and therefore drunkenly stumbling around the (in this case, slanted) floor. We try not to let it get to us, but it’s hella irritating to have drunk people with no concept of personal space leaning on/near you when you’re trying to sing along.
Nevertheless, drunk or sober, everyone unites for two songs: “Cute Without the ‘E’ (Cut from the Team)” and “MakeDamnSure”. It’s fun to watch people completely lose their minds for the two most popular TBS songs, though there’s little time for people-watching when you’re flailing just as hard. It’s a good thing they end with those songs, otherwise we’d be exhausted halfway through the set.