Taking Back Sunday & The Used
About Taking Back Sunday:
Formed in 1999 in Amityville, New York, Taking Back Sunday modeled their interpretation of melodic hardcore after bands like Lifetime, Endpoint, and Sunny Day Real Estate, as well as guitarist Ed Reyes' emo outfit the Movielife. After the release of a five-song demo and a year's worth of touring (including shows with At the Drive-In and Alkaline Trio), Taking Back Sunday signed to Victory Records and entered New Jersey's Big Blue Meanie Recording Studios alongside producer Sal Villanueva and engineer Tim Gilles. The result, Tell All Your Friends, layered Adam Lazzara's emotional vocals and the dual-guitar assault of Reyes and John Nolan, fashioning a classic hardcore sound with pop songwriting components. The debut album was released in March 2002 and is the only official album to display the founding lineup.
The group spent the rest of that year and much of 2003 touring, but when Nolan and bassist Shaun Cooper left the band (which was rounded out by drummer Mark O'Connell), Taking Back Sunday's future was left in doubt. However, guitarist/vocalist Fred Mascherino (ex-Breaking Pangaea) and bassist Matt Rubano (ex-Schleigho) filled out the lineup in time for the band's fall 2003 tour and subsequent recording sessions. The sophomore effort, Where You Want to Be, arrived in summer 2004 and debuted at number three on Billboard's Top 200, establishing Taking Back Sunday as a forerunner in the wave of commercial emo bands. It also introduced the vocal interplay of Lazzara and Mascherino, a combination that would briefly become one of the band's sonic calling cards. TBS toured steadily behind the album, headlining a sold-out North American tour and hitting the usual Warped Tour stops as well.
In the wake of Where You Want to Be's success, Taking Back Sunday signed with Warner Bros. in June 2005 and co-headlined several shows with Jimmy Eat World. Ever the hard workers, they returned to the studio in August to commence work on their third full-length album. Produced by Eric Valentine (Third Eye Blind, Queens of the Stone Age), Louder Now debuted at number two upon its release in April 2006. The album was a darker, more aggressive effort that tapped into the band's live energy, which was further displayed on the concert CD/DVD package Louder Now: Part Two. Despite the band's mounting profile, however, Fred Mascherino exited the lineup in October 2007 and launched a solo career. Several months later, former Facing New York member Matt Fazzi was announced as Mascherino's replacement, and the revised band spent the bulk of 2008 writing new material and playing sporadic shows. New Again, the first album to feature Fazzi's contributions, was released in summer 2009. The concert album Live from Orensanz followed in 2010. Later that year, the band announced that the lineup of from their debut, Tell All Your Friends, would be reuniting in the studio for their next album. The following year, the band released their fifth studio album, the eponymous Taking Back Sunday, followed by the EP Faith (When I Let You Down). - All Music Guide
About The Used:
The members of the Used had to overcome poverty, homelessness, and substance abuse, not to mention the straitlaced attitudes of their hometown of Orem, Utah, to bring their screamo-tinged brand of post-hardcore to life. But they persevered and earned a contract with Reprise Records, releasing their self-titled debut album in June 2002. Having only played a handful of shows around Orem prior to their record's release, the band -- vocalist Bert McCracken, guitarist Quinn Allman, bassist Jeph Howard, and drummer Branden Steineckert -- began relentless nationwide touring that quickly saw their fan base multiply. Club dates soon turned into successful stints on larger-scale festival/package tours including the Warped Tour, Ozzfest, and Projekt Revolution alongside Linkin Park and Snoop Dogg. In the summer of 2003, the Used issued the introspective CD/DVD Maybe Memories, which contained unreleased songs, live material, behind-the-scenes footage, and more.
Their official sophomore offering showed up in September 2004 as In Love and Death, and the guys hopped on the first incarnation of the Taste of Chaos tour early the next year. Around that time, they also recorded a version of the Queen classic "Under Pressure" with My Chemical Romance to benefit victims of the devastating tsunami of December 2004. Boasting a fuller sound, In Love and Death peaked at number six on Billboard's Top 200 and the Used continued touring behind it worldwide. Outside of the band, McCracken has also lent his vocals to the punk rock drum troupe Street Drum Corps. As the Used readied their third album, Steineckert parted ways with the group over creative differences in early fall 2006 (he went on to join Rancid).
The live CD/DVD Berth appeared in February 2007 to tide over fans a bit longer until the proper full-length, Lies for the Liars, came out in May. Though he didn't perform on the record, drummer Dan Whitesides joined the band as an official member just in time for the supporting tour. The group's fourth full-length album, Artwork, was produced by Matt Squire (Panic at the Disco) and released on Reprise in 2009. 2012's Vulnerable, the band's fifth studio outing, and first for new label Hopeless, was preceded by the single "I Come Alive." It was reissued the following year as Vulnerable (II) with a bonus disc stocked with B-sides, remixes, and acoustic tracks. - All Music Guide