Taking Back Sunday: Tell All Your Friends (2002)


The truth about this cd is I’m ashamed to even admit that I’ve heard it…much less have it…(gulp) much less like it. It is 100% a guilty pleasure that I’ve tried to resist, but time and time again I come back to it.

The band is really just a generic group of guys who are neither particularly good nor bad at playing music. They have two singers who do the call and return thing pretty well and different enough voices to distinguish that it’s not the same guy, but a similar sound overall. The genre is pretty emo pop punk, a la Dashboard Confessional and The Used. Not sure what else to say. Usually I hate that kinda crap.

But there’s something infectiously listenable about this album (and ONLY this album – their other stuff is abysmal). Songs like “Cute without the ‘E’ (Cut From the Team)”, “Bike Scene”, and “You’re So Last Summer,” have everything a hit single is made of: non-threatening simple chords (you too can play this song, even if you totally suck at guitar!), predictable but pleasing pop hooks, and easily digestible lyrics. And they’re fun. They remind you of summer and friends and youthfulness. A sort of built-in nostalgia without the hassle of real memories. And for all their simplicity, the lyrics are pretty clever – “The truth is you could slit my throat, and with my one last gasping breath I’d apologize for bleeding on your shirt.” Clever and… secret’s out… really fun to sing along with. God I’m so embarrassed! But seriously, try NOT singing “You’re So Last Summer” in the shower the day you hear it. You can’t. It compels you to repeat it.

Drawbacks of the album include the fact that it gets stuck in your head, in kind of the yucky way that the oompah loompah tune does. Plus, you definitely have to be in the mood for mindless music to play it. All the songs pretty much sound the same, so no need to skip any, but if you don’t like one, chances are you should pass on the whole thing.


  1. JT said,

    January 28, 2009 @ 9:46 pm

    “This is me with the words on the tip of my tongue And my eye through the scope down the barrel of a gun.”…I guess I share the shame 🙁

  2. Noelle said,

    February 2, 2009 @ 2:51 pm

    I feel no shame, this is their best CD.

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