Taking Back Sunday at The Commodore

Photos by Alex Ramon

I haven’t been to an actual rock concert in a very long time. To be honest, I don’t think I even remember the last time I got a chance to rock out to some solid hard hitting tunes, but that all changed when I saw Taking Back Sunday at The Commodore. As I was walking up to the venue, I couldn’t help but see a familiar face outside having some fresh air. Adam Lazzara, lead vocalist of the band, was just casually standing outside enjoying the scenery of downtown Vancouver, and being the journalist/music fan that I am, I went up to him and introduced myself. He had a very positive demeanour, and was very easy to approach. I asked him several questions about the tour and he responded with very encouraging comments. I couldn’t help but ask about the horrors of the border crossing for working musicians. Apparently it’s very easy to get into any other country without hassle, but when it comes to Canada, they had to go through all the necessary paper work. It’s strange, considering we’re neighbours and all, but rules are rules and it’s a good thing TBS was smart enough to abide by them, otherwise they wouldn’t have been able to play their killer set at The Commodore.

Comprised of the aforementioned Adam Lazzara (Lead Vocals), Matt Fazzi (Guitar, Vocals), Eddie Reyes (Guitar), Mark O’Connell (Drums), and Matt Rubano (Bass, Vocals), this five-piece brought their new age rock to the unsuspecting crowd at The Commodore. They were energetic, passionate, and overall very entertaining. In support of their new album titled “New Again,” Taking Back Sunday seemed to have rejuvenated their passion for playing, and that was a good thing for everyone in the crowd.

Taking Back Sunday Adam is by far one of my favourite lead vocalists, not only because of his pitch perfect vocals, but also because of his incredible showmanship. He played off of the audiences’ emotions, and swung his mic in an uncontrollable manner, all the while wrapping the cord around his neck to create a noose. He’s not your typical pop-punk vocalist, he doesn’t have that whiny voice and he really did surprise me with his ability to belt. The Matts (both Fazzi and Rubano) were not to be outdone, as they ran from one end of the stage to the other, all the while jumping like a hooligan and raising hell for the crowd surfing audience. Eddie and Mark kept a level head, but showed as much passion as the rest of the band. These are all qualities that describe a band working in sync, and this provided a night to remember for all those TBS fans.

There were many highlights to the night, too many to list off, so I’ll just name a couple that stood out for me. When TBS played “Carpathia,” a song about the first ship to receive the SOS distress call from the Titanic, I really felt the emotion up on that stage. The harmonies between Adam and the Matts were astounding, and really showed why they aren’t your typical pop-punkers. “New Again,” the title track off their new album, began with a heavy bass kicker intro, where Adam was able to coerce the crowd into clapping along with the beat. The enthusiasm of the entire band rubbed off onto the crowd, and everyone seemed to be jumping and jiving along to the tunes, including the people sitting on the side.

Because of this show, Taking Back Sunday is now one of my favourite bands, not only because of their music, but also because of their easygoing personality that shined up on that stage. They’re currently on tour at the moment, so check their myspace and website for all the details.