The lights turn off. Anticipation reaches its peak. The sound of electronic rock and metal permeates the ears as you realize something unique is going to unfold.
You're about to be taken in by The Taking.
Hailing from deep in the heart of San Antonio, Texas, the quartet could very well have called itself The Rising because the sky is the limit with this band.
Forgoing a bassist, the group was officially formed in late 2012 with the addition of guitarist David Work who joined vocalist Alan Lozano, guitarist Dominic Cerna and drummer Daniel Ross which gave The Taking that added crunch in the studio and on stage to mesh with Lozano's poignant relationship lyrics, Cerna's electric guitar prowess and Ross' steady beats behind the kit.
The band then released a self-titled EP and a series of singles. "Anywhere," was used as a playoff rallying cry by the San Antonio Spurs during the 2014 run to their fifth NBA championship. "I Won't Remember a Thing" made its presence felt on World Wrestling Entertainment's "Total Divas" reality show.
While many artists struggle for years without getting a deal of any type, The Taking latched on with JBM Management prior to the release of their first full-length album. JBM represents one of metal's biggest bands since the turn of the century -- Disturbed -- along with Disturbed vocalist David Draiman's secondary group Device. But it's not like such a deal came on a silver platter. The Taking have earned what they received in a very short time.
How many bands can pull off such an accomplishment? Not many. But when JBM honcho T.J. Sagen received a call in Chicago from his brother in Los Angeles after he heard "The Bitter End" on the radio, it wasn't long before Sagen saw the band live. Soon afterward, I's were dotted and T's were crossed. A few short months later, lasers were flying during The Taking's February 2015 debut full-length and self-titled CD release party at Fitzgerald's Bar in their hometown.
On the strength of first single "Never See Me Again" plus other standouts "Live For the Pain," "Torn to Pieces," "Get Some" and "We Rise," The Taking demonstrate live that they are a force to be reckoned with. They cook up various ingredients of musical influences, sprinkle in large doses of metal, hard rock and electronica and mix them into one big pot. Whether they're performing on a rooftop at SXSW or sharing the stage with the likes of Evanescence and 36 Crazyfists, The Taking's passion is etched on their sweaty faces brought forth by energetic performances that have been known to leave fans breathless as well.
Reinventing the wheel? Hardly. Out to conquer the world? Not exactly. But The Taking ARE focused on living out their dream by bringing their music to as many listeners as possible. This is a band that believes in itself. A group that will do anything it takes to achieve its goals. Four friends and brothers in arms who will not forget where they come from. You cannot fake such an outlook and approach to this type of livelihood on stage. That is why The Taking are contenders in the music scene, not pretenders.
So go ahead. Get taken in by The Taking. Buckle up, enjoy the ride -- and never look back.
Credit: Jay Nanda
San Antonio Metal Music Examiner/Metal Music Beat