Taking Back Sunday takes Buffalo back in time
Alternative rockers sell out the Town Ballroom
Published: Sunday, October 13, 2013
Updated: Sunday, October 13, 2013 20:10
Crowd surfers bounced across a sea of people, mosh pits emerged and a lone fan jumped off a ledge into the pit below.
Taking Back Sunday’s show at the Town Ballroom Saturday night was full of intensity.
The sold-out show, which took place on the second day of the veteran rockers’ Fall 2013 tour, was everything fans anticipated.
21-year-old Samantha Boyce traveled three hours from Toronto, Canada, to see her favorite band for the seventh time.
“No amount of money can keep me from seeing Taking Back Sunday,” said Boyce, who forgot her ticket at home and had to buy another. “You can’t put a price on the show that Taking Back Sunday gives to their fans.”
The band’s 90-minute set spanned all five albums with tastes of songs from their upcoming untitled release. Both old and new fans could enjoy the night with songs like “Catholic Knees” from Taking Back Sunday’s vault.
The ballroom was illuminated with shades of red and purple as the band played though the night. It felt like an arena-sized show with the balance of lighting. At times, the lights had a dripping effect on the velvet curtains behind the drum kit.
Vocalist Adam Lazzara became the focal point of the stage. He showed his signature microphone tricks multiple times. Lazzara twirled his microphone by its elongated cord and swung it around his neck as he bounced to each side of the stage. Fans crawled over each other, attempting to grasp at the rocker’s hand as he approached the edge of the stage.
“The last time I tried Adam’s microphone skills, I almost choked myself,” said Ryan Perry of Rochester. “Don’t try it or you’ll have a bad time.”
Taking Back Sunday played classics like “Liar (It Takes One to Know One)” from 2006’s Louder Now and “Cute Without the ‘E’ (Cut From the Team)” from their debut album Tell All Your Friends. The opening chords of the nostalgic songs instantly energized the crowd to new heights as they sang along with their fists raised.
“They always play ‘Liar’ because they know how much we love the song,” Boyce said. “That song defined part of my childhood.”
Lead guitarist John Nolan maintained friendly banter with Lazzara between songs. They remarked on how they liked Buffalo’s energy and how they were beyond grateful for the turnout, considering Pearl Jam was down the road at the First Niagara Center.
Lazzara also posed for pictures on stage briefly as he told the crowd to “Get ready because we are gonna blow your minds.”
“Flicker Fade,” a track from the new album, was filled with classic Taking Back Sunday flair. Lazzara spun in circles, whipping around his long hair and moving his hips as the rest of the band utilized as much of the stage as they could. Some fans were singing along to the new track.
Taking Back Sunday returned to the stage for a three-song encore, closing the show with 2006’s “MakeDamnSure,” their most successful single to date. Fans in the pit of the Ballroom made sure to make the last song count; almost everyone in the crowd was moving.
Pop-punk band Transit and punk rockers Polar Bear Club opened up the show and instilled the energy that carried over to Taking Back Sunday’s set. Their vocalists attempted to embody Lazzara’s stage presence by running around and jumping into the crowd.
Taking Back Sunday played in Rochester Sunday and will be in Stroudsburg, Pa., today. The tour ends on Nov. 7 in the band’s hometown of Long Island.