Orange County melodic hardcore luminaries, Taken, hit back with the With Regard To  EP today – the band’s first new release in fourteen years. The Other People Records released EP shows the band matching, if not exceeding, the raw ferocity that made them so influential in their heyday and fans are sure to be pleased with this most recent effort. The five songs on In Regard To stay true to the band’s roots, with vocalist Ray Harkins emotive vocals finding a home over a soundscape of propulsive percussion and turbulent guitars. In partnering with Other People Records, who released Taken’s entire discography, entitled Carry Us Until There Is Nothing Left in 2014, the band continues a partnership with unmatched synergy thus allowing them to put out the EP Taken fans have been hoping for since the announcement the band would be putting out new music. You can stream the EP now on Spotify and you can purchase it here.  

With Regard To is thematically centered around the battle with a rare form of cancer that vocalist, Ray Harkins’, wife Kate was able to push through and is now soundly on the road to recovery from. Kate’s diagnosis in November of 2016 came just as Taken was recording their new EP. As a result, Ray decided to trash the entire set of lyrics he had prepared for the EP and write specifically to what his family was dealing with at home. As Ray puts it, “I knew I couldn’t sing about anything else while this was swirling around me. I focused on my experience in watching someone I love deeply fight for their life and how that impacted me”. Musically, this EP has been a long time in the making. The songs started to take form upon the reformation of the band in 2008 and slowly came together as the band played shows sporadically across the world over the following years. The music came to the members of Taken in spurts – culminating in a weekend spent locked in a rehearsal studio. Of that weekend, Harkins adds “We had attempted to write over the internet for a few years and it came to a point where we had to be in each other’s face to refine the ideas and hammer these songs home”. Once written, the band would turn to producer Beau Burchell (Moose Blood, Senses Fail, Saosin), who played a pivotal role in helping the band finish the songs that they would ultimately record in his Los Angeles studio.

In Regard To EP Track Listing

1 – Regret

2 – Reflect

3 – Realign

4 – Repose

5 – Rejoice

Taken built their cult-like international following largely on the back of their explosive live show. As a recent interview with Harkins in Decibel Magazine noted “Their road dogging was so much so that I would run into the band three or four times a year in various locales, seeing and hanging out with them often more than I would my so-called friends at home.”. The band has been playing small runs around the world since reforming in 2008 and haven’t lost a step in terms of moving an audience. In celebration of With Regard To, the band will play a hometown EP Release Show at Chain Reaction in Anaheim on May 12th with support from Less Art and Wanter. Tickets for the show are available now and look for additional tour dates to be announced as we get closer to release date.

More from Taken

Website | Facebook | Twitter (Ray Harkins) | Instagram | Spotify

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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