Before you come at us as to why we didn’t choose, ‘Tell All Your Friends’, or near enough every other immaculate record from Taking Back Sunday, some of the godfathers of emo’s back catalogue, hear us out. We too sat and debated this week’s Under The Influence for AT LEAST four weeks.
” In twelve months hAlf oF the tracks that took emo into the forefront of popular music were born.”
But from the artwork inspired by 1960’s iconic street photographer, Joel Meyerowitz, through to releasing a track that would define the difference between an ‘emo night’ and an ‘alternative night’, Louder Now is not only the most successful Taking Back Sunday record to date, but a record that resides within the inner emo in all of us.
2006 was a championing year for ‘emo’. Fellow genre mates, MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE painted the streets black in aid of The Black Parade, and Davey Havok (AFI) dawned more makeup than any other poster boy in videos for anthems such as, Miss Murder, all the while new kids on the block, FALL OUT BOY were still mid album campaign for the acclaimed, From Under The Cork Tree. Maybe it was the mass releases of important records within the genre that allowed for Louder Now to reach it’s success, with the likes of Kerrang! Voting it ‘Record Of The Year’, through to more commercial success, but also it’s arguable that Taking Back Sunday themselves were responsible for leading the pack. In twelve months half of the tracks that took emo into the forefront of popular music were born.
Opening track, What’s It Feel Like To Be A Ghost opens with tantalising guitar riffs, comparable to the likes of Foo Fighters, who were amidst a mass of radio play at the time, with following track, Liar (It Takes One To Know One), bragging of bass lines that made even the toughest of folding arm folk move in the back of the clubs. And while commercial appeal is a catch 22 for anyone within the ‘rock world’, what keeps Louder Now on it’s toes, is that it is still a classic Taking Back Sunday record. From mic swings (which would then go on to influence some ‘spite driven’ lyrics of a ‘band who cannot be named’), to revenge, from emotionally powerful love songs, through to conceptually crafted songs to represent the weird insight of the apathetic emo kid’s mind, Adam Lazzara’s lyrical content still hit us the exact same way every other TBS record had over the years.
“Louder Now is a record that has become timeless in it’s ability to encapsulate the moment emo broke the mainstream, and would become pillar within the cult genre forever.”
And could we really talk about Louder Now without giving grace to THE gem of the record, THE Taking Back Sunday track, that fan or not, you know what it? That’s right, Make Damn Sure. A floor filler, laced with emotive lyrics, and almost a power ballad chorus that can be sang both at 4am in your bedroom, and amidst the festival crowds, it’s arguable that these three minutes and 28 seconds is not only the perfect introductory track to Taking Back Sunday, but Emo 101 itself. Coupled with one of the most charming, beautiful, and captivating videos, both Make Damn Sure and Louder Now’s other singles reflect on a time in popular culture where music TV channels were at a height. If you too were to drain your remote’s batteries flicking between MTV2 (RIP) and Scuzz, then chances are the graphic driven video for Liar or Make Damn Sure were aired on an almost daily basis.
So while we continue to have that heated debate over our morning coffees and when near sleeping under our office desks the night before printing, there’s no denying that a fan of Taking Back Sunday or not, Louder Now is a record that has become timeless in it’s ability to encapsulate the moment emo broke the mainstream, and would become pillar within the cult genre forever.
Taking Back Sunday will be playing Chicago’s Riot Fest – 13th Sept-16th Sept 2019 (and performing ‘Louder Now’ in full no less!)
Tickets available here: