by Frank Lewis
It’s been three years since Taking Back Sunday released a record. If last night’s show is any indication of what’s on the band’s new album, it was worth the wait. Fellow Long Island natives Envy on the Coast and Christian band Anberlin came along for the tour.
Watching Envy on the Coast was like watching an Incubus in training. Lead singer Ryan Hunter has a voice that could rival Brandon Boyd. The first song of the band’s set started with melancholy vocals and guitar, slowly working its way to a drum-pounding and head-shaking anthem. Envy on the Coast hasn’t played a show since after Christmas, but it wasn’t obvious. The band had a vibe that would make older bands jealous.
Anberlin lead singer Stephen Christian is the kind of guy who’s always happy, but somehow never annoying. The Florida band’s set was one constant hand-clapping sing-a-long. The band played “The Resistance,” “Breaking” and “Paper Thin Hymn,” all from its newest album, New Surrender. It also played some classics like the constant crowd-pleaser “Feel Good Drag” and the acoustic-driven “The Unwinding Cable Car.”
The crowd was relatively tame until Taking Back Sunday came on. Then, it was any concert-goer for him/herself. Although it’s been a while since the band’s toured, frontman Adam Lazzara still has it. Anyone who’s ever liked Taking Back Sunday should see the band live, just to be amazed by Lazzara’s stage presence. He strutted, swinging his microphone and musically teasing the audience, and you wondered why the band waited three years to release a new album. Fans got a taste of a few songs from the upcoming album, New Again. Taking Back Sunday also threw in songs from its past three albums. “Cute Without the ‘E’ (Cut From the Team)” and “You’re So Last Summer" — both from the band’s scene-shaping album, Tell All Your Friends — were welcomed by the audience. It’s unclear who’s more excited for the upcoming record: the band or its fans. “I am ready to be new again,” Lazzara sang in New Again’s title track. Mission accomplished. — Brittany Moseley