Taking Back Sunday
Where You Want To Be


2.0
poor

Review

by John weathered old reviewer Hanson STAFF
April 24th, 2006 | 226 replies


Release Date: 2004 | Tracklist


Where You Want To Be. After the new lineup being together for only a few months, they decided a new album is what was needed. Taking Back Sunday did have quite a bit of success with WYWTB, it debuted 3rd on the charts, and the first single A Decade Under The Influence had a tremendous run on MTV, FUSE, and radio stations around the country. However, was any of this really deserved? No, not particularly.

Episode II: Where You Want To Be

So, what was good about the album?
The album had plenty going for it. It was following Tell All Your Friends, and some of the hype was to be believed. A Decade Under The Influence was a perfect choice for a lead single; the opening riff was smooth and cool, and Lazzara had apparently lost little of his own touch as well. However, new guitarist/vocalist Fred Mascherino was also a nice new compliment to his voice, sounding very similar to Nolan but yet slightly gruffer.

There were some other gems on the album as well. The Union was very reminiscent of past album standout Head Club, and feels much more in tune with TAYF than any other track here. It transitions flawlessly from chaotic verses, to slow and melodic pre-choruses, and charging choruses. The final two tracks also stood out grandly, as Little Devotional and …Slowdance On The Inside were both dynamic songs. Little Devotional felt like a more suave TBS had taken root, while at once keeping some of their old “bite", whilst Slowdance was a power ballad for TBS, and took yet another page from Head Club by ending the album on a repeating note.

Ok…so why the poor score?
This album may have been called Set Phasers to Stun + Bonus tracks. It is extremely repetitive, with many songs sounding exactly the same, and with the stretch of New America Classic to Number Five With A Bullet not doing anything particularly decent, and the latter 3 being extremely difficult to differentiate. It’s case not of mistaken identity, but of every song having very similar identities. When over half of the album is essentially the same song, it just wont be an enjoyable listening experience for more than a few play throughs.

However, this album also marked a down in general musicianship for the band. Now, granted (for the 139709847th time it seems), pop punk isn’t about technicality of any sort, but new rhythm guitarist Mascherino and bassist Matt Rubano pale in comparison to their previous counterparts. Yes, the riffs may have gotten repetitive before (more so than they normally should, at least), they were at least somewhat inventive. Every one on here just seems bland and uninspired, with many of them bleeding together. There are exceptions of course, but in general the guitar work is far below what it once was. The bass is essentially nonexistent on this album, where TAYF had some nifty lines here and there and almost coulda been a solo moments, Rubano opts to play either extremely boring or just follow whatever the guitars are doing, making for a horribly boring experience altogether.

…that bad, huh?
Oh, there’s worse Johnny. New American Classic is one of the most boring acoustic songs ever made. Their last stab at a slow song was a flop, so the thinking here had to be “Why not make it acoustic?" Well, because it sounds like every other acoustic songs “trendy" bands these days put out. If I hadn’t heard far better, I would be inclined to enjoy the song, as Lazzara does find his crooning voice here. However, Mascherino weakness is exposed here: He is just a horribly average and mediocre singer. There’s nothing particularly wrong with him, he does what he needs to do fine, but I know at least 11 people who sound specifically like him, and it just bores me whenever he jumps in.

The lyrics will not be touched upon in depth. Why? Because they are just ‘ugh’. There were some interesting moments on TAYF, specifically “There’s No ‘I’ In Team’. Here, the most introspective they get it another stab at friendship, but it feels tired by this point. Yes, your friend betrayed you, you’re dealing, cool. Where’s the songs about self-loathing again?

…so should I get this album?
If you really, really, really, really liked Tell All Your Friends, no. You’ll be sorely disappointed by this, and may smash the CD in frustration. If you really, really, really, really disliked Tell All Your Friends and are hoping for a different sound, don’t buy this. You’ll be sorely disappointed, but you probably won’t smash the CD because you probably don’t care enough. I do recommend this if you were interested in TBS from a few listens of Tell All Your Friends, but want to hear some more material. It does have its strong moments, and despite all the shortcomings becoming far more apparent here, Where You Want To Be is still a tolerable, if very average and common, album. However, WYWTB is completely eclipsed by…



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user ratings (1153)
Chart.
3.6
great
other reviews of this album
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Comments:Add a Comment 
Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
April 24th 2006


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Part dos of tres. I feel this is the weakest of the three, as I used a format I normally don't like. And tease endings ftw.

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
April 24th 2006


15743 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Why do I have a nasty feeling a Louder Now review will come tomorrow overshowering it with the initial praise almost every album gets in it's first day?

Digging: Flying Lotus - You're Dead!

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
April 24th 2006


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Over praise? Nah. Praise? Maybe. This album was just that bad.

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
April 24th 2006


15743 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Bah. This album isn't nearly as bad as you say. A solid three. A Decade Under The Influence is the song of 2004, though I can't say the rest of my album was fantastic.

P.S. I love the concept reviews.This Message Edited On 04.24.06

The Jungler
April 24th 2006


4827 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Iluvatar, cranking them out... two reviews in one day. Two good reveiws I must add. Not much compared to TAYF but this album has some awesome tunes.

south_of_heaven 11
April 24th 2006


5435 Comments


Shoveling out two good reviews in one day is some damn good work...I can do one and then I'm done for about a week.
I don't own this album, but back in the day I saw these guys play at warped tour (got in free, and thats really the only reason why I went), and I saw these guys and the lead singer was spinning the microphone and clocked himself in the head.
However, I've heard mixed ratings on this album...some people I know love it/live by it, and apparently, others do not.

The Jungler
April 24th 2006


4827 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Did you see him hanging upside down from the upper rails of the stage? That shit was crazy.This Message Edited On 04.24.06

south_of_heaven 11
April 24th 2006


5435 Comments


hahaha apparently I did not, as after the microphone incident, he moved around, but he didnt really try anything else...he might've done other stuff, but I left after the next song to go get some over-priced food.

711
April 24th 2006


1341 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is a fairly good album, it has some good songs. The new record is much better in my opinion.

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
April 24th 2006


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

If I could only submit my next review today...alas, you all must wait for its glory. Although, since I have nothing better to do, I may crank out that Redeemer review tonight. Machinae Supremacy = best SiD metal band ever. Maybe the only one, but meh.
Anyways, thanks for the compliments folks. Wait till about midnight central time I suppose....

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
April 24th 2006


15743 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I would like to kindly advise you against writing a Louder Now review tomorrow, as it is coming out that day, and an album should have a good 4-7 days of quality listening before an accurate opinion can be formed. I wrote a Hail To The Thief review a couple days after I purchased it, and wrote about the songs that were fillers. Those "fillers" are now highlights of the album for me.

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
April 24th 2006


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

*cough* is all I have to say to that. *cough*.

I will be buying Louder Now tomorrow, along with Ichi the Killer, which finally came into my best buy. Yayayayayay for J-Horror. And they also have a copy of Lotus by Santana in stock for some odd reason, so I'll look rather strange with that at the check out line. "Louder Now, nice...Santana? Didn't he do that Cool song?...uh...Ichi the Killer?...wtf"

It got deleted for a reason Bchop...it isn't out yet...This Message Edited On 04.24.06

Bchop13
April 24th 2006


68 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I already wrote my "Louder Now" review but it was deleted.
Btw this isn't as bad as you say it is, "New American Classic" was one of the best songs on the album.

NEDM
April 24th 2006


1113 Comments


Heyyy, I liked "New American Classic".

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
April 24th 2006


15743 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I did too, another diagreement I had with this review. 180 by summer is cool too.

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
April 24th 2006


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Oh silly differences, can't we all just agree that this pales in comparison to Tell All Your Friends?
And was there a concept to this review specifically? It really was just a "Good/Bad/The Ugly" kinda thing, I just mixed it up a bit. Spiced it up, some would say.

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
April 24th 2006


15743 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Nah I mean your reviews go in order of Taking back Sunday albums, leading up to tomorrow's hurrah. That's what I meant by concept.

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
April 24th 2006


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Ah yes. Hopefully my Louder Now review will live up to my expectations. Luckily...it's a pretty good album...I hear...yeah...
And on second though, I probably should have done standout tracks with these. Oh well, I'll just tack them on to LN.

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
April 24th 2006


15743 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Hopefully your Louder Now review will live up to the expectations you set for it with your final sentence.

metalgiutarist
April 24th 2006


7 Comments


not bad the album is a good one. you guys overdid it with this interview




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