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/// ON TOUR New Again (Again!):


THE REUNION OF TAKING BACK SUNDAY


| by Kevin VanAntwerpen I


N 2 0 0 2 , TA K I N G B A C K SUNDAY released its full-length debut, Tell All Your Friends – a 10-track album that would eventually become a staple of


modern punk, spawning countless imitators. Many, including drummer Mark O’Connell, attributed the album’s charm to the chemistry of the band’s lineup of longtime friends. But in 2003, co-vocalist John Nolan and


bassist Shaun Cooper left to form experimental indie rock outfit Straylight Run. “There were so many reasons they left the


band,” O’Connell said. “S*** just got out of hand. An obscene amount of alcohol was being drunk. All the s*** that you’ve heard, it was probably true.”


Since 2002, the band has reached main-


stream success with three albums and thanks to major label Warner Brothers Records and multiple musician replacements. Things, how- ever, were never exactly the same. “All the new guys we found were basically


hired guns with these negative attitudes and huge f***ing egos,” O’Connell said. “They get this holier-than-thou attitude. If that’s the way you’re going to act because your band is success- ful, that tells me a lot about you as a person.” While repercussions of Nolan and


Cooper’s departure left them on bad terms with most of the band, O’Connell managed to maintain the friendships. It became his personal goal to return the band to original form.


TAKING BACK SUNDAY wsg Thursday & Colour Revolt The Orbit Room, Grand Rapids July 28, doors at 6:30 p.m. $27.50 advance, $30 at the door orbitroom.com, (616) 942-1328


“I never wanted John and Shaun to leave


the band,” O’Connell said. “I never wanted the other dudes that came into the band to be there … I made it my personal mission to get them back in the band, and to get the other guys the f*** out.” The group scheduled a meet at a ranch in El


Paso, Texas – the first time most of the members had spoken in almost a decade. “We showed up. We hugged. Adam [Lazaara] was like ‘if there’s any bulls***, let’s


get it out on the table’ … And that’s what we did. It was a long night.” Lately, Taking Back Sunday is hitting ven-


ues across the country in support of its self-titled album – the first to feature Nolan and Cooper since 2002. There’s a newfound sense of energy and completeness among the band members. “I don’t want to sound cocky, but we’re


really proud of the album. It’s f***ing good. You can hear our excitement. You can just hear how happy we are with where we are.” n


58 | REVUEWM.COM | JULY 2011


SCHEDULE | DINING | SIGHTS | SOUNDS | SCENE


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