It’s pretty impressive when you find a band that tries effectively to reinstate an old lineup and revive it. Especially in the rock genre in this day and age, you find members hopping around to any band that gives them a venture to vent their musical ADHD (or, if you’re Jonny Craig, somebody who accepts your douche ego). In an act of forces beyond us all, we had the revival of Taking Back Sunday’s original lineup a few years ago, and after a few years of touring, they have released Happiness Is on March 18th, 2014.
Having been an original lover of the original lineup (and even in my old age of 22, still blasting Tell All Your Friends), I have a lot of happiness in my heart for the reuniting of the original band. The problem is the years apart, and the amount of time since their original gold mine of album releases (Tell All Your Friends in 2002, Where You Want To Be in 2004). While the band has always remained true to its style, they have aged, and the years away from each other could have either been a blessing or disastrous.
The verdict on the album is this: its solid. It is, simply stated, a good album. But nothing about it strikes me the way they used to. There is no equivalent on this album to say, Cute Without The E. Some of the angst is gone, but I guess that is to be expected with the aging of the band. Adam Lazzara still has his voice, but the passion seems to be dwindling. Is this what pop punk looks in old age (I’m really curious to see who slaps me for the amount of times I point out how old the band is getting)? Part of me should be way happier to see them still standing. Even cooler, Mark O’Connell is still bringing it on drums (he even got way better, like a sharp shooter of high hats and shit). Further, Flicker, Fade is quite a good song (for reals, the breakup anthem of 2014. It will kill you a little inside).
I miss the anger. I miss the screams. But, I guess this is good enough to work with. While I like the album, I will probably just find myself backtracking to the older albums the band put out.
OVERALL RATING: Pretty Dope.
SONGS TO LOOK OUT FOR: Flicker, Fade, All The Way, Beat Up Car, Better Homes And Gardens.
TOUR DETAILS: http://www.takingbacksunday.com/tour/