Trying out a whole new sound

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 02 August, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 02 August, 2009, 12:00am

Taking Back Sunday, an American rock band from New York, releases its first album without guitarist Fred Mascherino. With a new lineup (featuring new guitarist Matthew Fazzi) and new sound, the band has taken a different direction, shifting away from the old emo-rock formula for a more pop-punkish vibe.

Like the title suggests, the band's fourth album, New Again is a definite departure from its old releases - one that new listeners may find easier to enjoy, but that established fans may not appreciate.

The album opens with the rhythmic, bright title track. This is followed by the album's first single, Sink Into Me. Punctuated by repeated - perhaps too frequently so - chants of 'Hey!', it demonstrates the band retains its old charm.

The rest of the tracks are enjoyable, varying quite a bit in instrumentation and tone. Some are loud and fierce, while others are mellower. Adam Lazzara's vocals range from soft and emotional to harsh and angst-ridden, adjusting to fit the lyrics about past loves and romances.

Though the band's sound has changed, it has not totally abandoned its roots. All in all, this is a cool album and a great complement to the summer.