Taking Back Sunday started out as a punk alternative band but they have added a touch of grace to their music. Something the punk world had never quite seen before. They were not explicitly a bunch of guys getting together and screaming unintelligible words with huge guitar riffs and dubbing it “music”. Their songs have been crafted masterly from start to finish and with their upcoming album in 2011 I have to wonder will they return to their source of success with great lyrics, stupendous vocals, and rough sounding music or fall flat with another mainstream album similar to New Again (2009).
Nonetheless, I have made my short list of best Taking Back Sunday songs and the reasoning behind their ranking:
5. Swing, Album: New Again
Despite being on a lackluster album Swing upholds tremendous lyrics that TBS is known for. Using a baseball metaphor, TBS is calling for their love interest to just give a swing at them and see where the ball (relationship) will go even though the couple is going through tough times:
” Lover, lover on the fence
Bat your eyes, ball a fist and
There is also reference to being tired of waiting on her to make up her mind but also not being forgotten if they do happen to split with:
“How long did you expect to keep me waiting?
How long before I’m just a memory?”
It is also very typical of a TBS song in which the pace of the song interchanges between slow and fast, or soft and tough, however one may put it. Whether you like the lyrics or the actual music, this is a song that may hit the nail on the head for many in rough relationships.
4. One-Eighty by Summer, Album: Where You Want To Be
A faster paced song with great timing on the emotional screaming parts and great guitar play by TBS. One-Eighty by Summer is a song that can take on two different meanings. There is always the lover route with lines such as
“She says live up to your first impression,
Well my best side was your worst invention”.
But this song could also be hitting at a sour friendship because the singer (Adam Lazzarra) proclaims “Why can’t you just be happy,” and “Can’t you live without the attention?” apparently at a star struck, attention hungry friend. Either way you take it we all know the feeling of being a different person around someone we are trying to impress and not knowing exactly how to handle a friend who’s ego is bigger than it ever should be.
3. Cute Without the E (Cut From the Team), Album: Tell All Your Friends
Once the best song to come from TBS, it is still one of the best from them and it is still one of the best punk songs to ever be made. Although this song follows the similar theme of love lost, this song strikes emotion into those who truly embrace the music. With fast paced lyrics:
“And will you tell all your friends
you’ve got your gun to my head
This all was only wishful thinkin’,
this all was only wishful thinkin'”
TBS is asking, “Is this how it is going to be between us? This and nothing more?” and knows that the thought of the two being together or friends again is only “wishful thinkin'”. The lyric that strikes me is:
“Why can’t I feel anything
from anyone other than you?“
Everyone has felt that there will be no one ever to match so and so’s personality, love, etc. and they will never find another. Great lyrics, great music, great song!
2. You’re So Last Summer, Album: Tell All Your Friends
We’ve all been there. That one summer where you seemingly meet the person of your dreams and never want to let them or the moment pass, but alas you both must move on your separate ways. In this encounter, the summer “love” fizzled quickly with a certain someone claiming:
“Don’t, don’t let it go to your head
Boys like you are a dime a dozen,
Boys like you are a dime a dozen”
Then regret sets in with a member of this summer love wanting more than just a summer to pursue this endeavor and is willing to do anything for her.
“I’ll do what I got to, the truth
is you could slit my throat
And with my one last gasping breath
I’d apologize for bleeding on your shirt”
A thoughtful song with stupendous lyrics, and always wonderful music accompanying the lyrics. Makes one think about all the people they pushed away because they were too busy chasing someone who was pushing them away.
1. MakeDamnSure, Album: Louder Now
If you listen to only one Taking Back Sunday song in your lifetime please make it this one. It is the epitome of TBS’s powerful lyrics and rapid movement. We all have that person that immediately catches our eye (“You hollow out my hungry eyes”) and we will do anything in our power to get them at least in our life. Yet this person will not let you in, be it for they are scared themselves, are holding onto a past relationship, or do not want to give you the light of day. Everyone feels they deserve a chance and when you do not even come close to getting that chance you feel as if you want to spout:
” I just wanna break you down so badly
Well I trip over everything you say
I just wanna break you down so badly
In the worst way”
This song is the quintessential TBS song hands down. Amazing lyrics, great guitar play and always spectacular vocals by Lazzarra.