Taking Back Sunday/The Used Live in Boston

Those in attendance for last night’s epic showcase at the House of Blues went into it with an alliance to one band already made. Members of the audience were either choosing to relive their emotionally lopsided high school days (Taking Back Sunday) or vocally unleash the pent up anger that boiled inside of them (The Used). But first on the bill was TBS, who did not disappoint with their song selection. The band’s excitement was palpable when they played tracks off of Happiness Is, which was released just last month.

Taking Back Sunday has some of the most loyal fans around, who had no problem belting out the lyrics to “Beat Up Car” and “Better Homes and Gardens.” But what everyone anticipated was exactly what we got—hits from the past.  “You Know How I Do,” “Timberwolves at New Jersey,” “You’re So Last Summer,” and “Cut From The Team” all reared their heads from their debut album, Tell All Your Friends. We were also treated to other favorites like “A Decade Under The Influence,” “What It Feels Like To Be A Ghost,” and “Liar (It Takes One To Know One)” before they closed out with “MakeDamnSure.”


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When The Used stepped onstage, a crowd that was amped up on our own nostalgia became even more enthralled. Lead singer Bert McCracken was almost unrecognizable, with his gaunt frame and shaved head. He was just as animated as ever, with his frenzied energy spilling into the crowd. Gems like “The Taste of Ink,” “Take It Away,” “All That I’ve Got,” and “Buried Myself Alive” all exuded McCracken’s signature ardor that have fed listeners for years.

Although the band just released Imaginary Enemy earlier this month, their short setlist and large discography didn’t permit much time for them to do any new material besides “Cry.” The song they chose for their encore was predictably “A Box Full of Sharp Objects” with slivers of Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit” thrown into the intro. By the time everyone started to exit the venue, we were tired, sweaty, and aching for more.

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