Taking Back Sunday

Louder Now (Warner Bros.)

After listening to Taking Back Sunday's third album, it's quite clear why the band's fan base consists mainly of adolescents. Like its prone-to-conformity teenaged admirers, the Long Island quintet prefers to let outsiders dictate what it sounds like — and hasn't yet cultivated a unique identity. Whereas producer Lou Giordano helped the band craft power-pop-leaning punk bursts on 2004's Where You Want to Be (an emo Buzzcocks?), new producer Eric Valentine chose to gussy up Taking Back Sunday's sound with conventional radio-punk polish. While this gloss often makes for a catchy listen (just try to remove the vaguely Kinksian "What's It Feel Like to Be a Ghost" from your mind), what shines through most is how formulaic Louder Now sounds.

"MakeDamnSure" soars with the same dramatic, slowed-down denouement as My Chemical Romance's "Helena," and "Liar (It Takes One to Know One)" cops the motor-mouth tempo and verbose accusations of Fall Out Boy. Meanwhile, the twin-vocal delivery from Adam Lazzara and guitarist Fred Mascherino emerges as faceless angst. It's all an improvement over Taking Back Sunday's anemic, sub-screamo days, sure — but still a disappointment in terms of artistic growth and originality.

 
My Voice Nation Help
 
Miami Concert Tickets

Concert Calendar

  • July
  • Thu
    31
  • Fri
    1
  • Sat
    2
  • Sun
    3
  • Mon
    4
  • Tue
    5
  • Wed
    6
Loading...