Bill Maher: Who are the big bands from the '60s — or any bands — that you like?
Guy from Taking Back Sunday: Uh, well ... Zeppelin was-
Bill Maher: That's not the '60s, fool!
I popped in at Mercy Lounge last night to check out that Second Quasi-Annual Rock 'n' Roll Science Fair deal, where I ran into Mercy employee and notorious roustabout Brandon Jazz. "You have a secret emo past, right?" he asked me. I can't deny it. As I've mentioned a time or two, there was a point in my life — regrettable, perhaps — at which Sunny Day and TGUK and David Bazan were like prophets to me. (Oddly enough, this was right around the same time that I was taking a lot of Bible courses.) Anyway, Jazz proceeded to tell me that emo-pop-pioneering New Jersey jokers Taking Back Sunday would be playing Mercy Lounge in the coming months. He wasn't bluffing.
While I certainly never placed TBS on the same illustrious pedestal as, say, JEW or Mineral or At the Drive-In, I definitely saw them live once. At Blue Sky Court. It was 2003, a month or two before I graduated from high school. Sparkly bracelets and infantile berets abounded. I got mono. A band called Count the Stars opened, and the guy from Recover — in so many words — called my friend a "bitch."
While second-wave (or was it already third-wave by this point?) emo was always saturated with ham-fisted, embarrassingly emotive references to pint-sized femmes fatale, obvious cinematic influences (We get it ... you like fucking Fight Club) and wanting to beat up the jerky-jerks who quit their respective bands, Taking Back Sunday took the cake. What's worse, as you can see in the above clip, they didn't even have the presence of mind to knock some social-commentary softballs that Bill Maher lobbed their way out of the park. Come on, dudes! You're named Taking Back Sunday, and your explanation is that you were, "Uh ... friends with, um, this band who ... they had a song that our name was, um, we ... being younger and things at matinee shows." Nice one.
I didn't mean to get off course here, taking swings at the low-hanging fruit and whatnot. After all, it's for the kids! But wait ... I don't think these kids are kids anymore. No matter. There's a point here, and the point is this: Taking Back Sunday is playing Cannery Ballroom on Oct. 19, and tickets will go on sale right here at noon on Aug. 20. Says the press release, "The band will be touring this fall in support of their recently released eponymous album, the first to feature the group's original lineup since 2002's Tell All Your Friends." So, you know, tell all your friends.
Openers will be The Maine and
Frightened Rabbit White Rabbits Bad Rabbits