Editors’ Notes "I think that we just collectively just wanted to take a step back and just do it for fun again, and try to make something that our listeners will feel good listening to," guitarist/vocalist Nick Casasanto tells Apple Music when describing Knuckle Puck's third album. While past records had more introspective songs about failed relationships, 20/20 highlights a brighter outlook on life, as uplifting anthems like "Tune You Out" and "Breathe" focus on maintaining a healthier attitude within those very relationships. "The world is in a strange place. But I think that it is very good timing for some of these themes on the record," explains Casasanto. "I'm just grateful that we chose to go in a positive direction, because I do think that it's what people need now more than ever." Here, Casasanto walks us through 20/20.

20/20
“As soon as I heard that song, I thought, ‘This is the opener of the record.’ It just has that get-up-and-go feeling. Just that sort of vibe that you turn on a record and it just kind of goes. The whole meaning behind it is essentially about having a lot of growing pains and feeling the need to grow up a little bit.”

Tune You Out
“The funny thing about this song is, it had one chorus, lyrically, for the entire year and a half that it was a song. In the last couple weeks of recording, I stepped into the vocal booth to lay down some scratch vocals, and when [producer] Seth [Henderson] hit record, I just started singing a different melody that I had. They thought it was going to be one thing, and they just stopped it and he was like, ‘Bro. Forget whatever you had, that is it.’ It's one of my favorite songs we've ever written, actually. It's so simple, so classic KP.”

Sidechain
“I feel like this song is going to be a sleeper. I started writing that song before I moved out to Los Angeles. In the process of moving, finished it lyrically, after I had already settled into my place in Los Angeles. I guess what I was going through at that time was a lot of uncertainty and a lot of fear, like, ‘Is this the right decision?’ Every time I listen to the song, I credit my mentality in writing that song for how much I really embraced the move.”

Earthquake
“When we first started writing it, we had the idea for the song structurally—we wanted the song to have a hook like [Third Eye Blind’s] ‘Never Let You Go’ does. I think the song came out much more straightforward and much more verse, pre-chorus, chorus. I'm pretty sure that that song is the first love song that KP has ever written. Because we've never really been that band. But, you know, I wanted to take a shot at it. I was feeling really good about life and in my relationship, and still do. I found myself being like, why have I not written a song about the person that means the most to me, in a positive light?”

RSVP
“I guess the song in general is about outgrowing someone, plain and simple. Not feeling like you need to respond to somebody, whether it's something they say or tactics that they use against you. I don't need to continue to stoop to this person's level.”

Breathe (feat. Derek Sanders)
“We really wanted to have a feature on the record, and we were in the studio, we had talked about it a few times. But we didn't know who it should be, what part it should be, what song it should be. But we had thrown Derek's name around quite a bit, ever since we had toured with them a couple years prior. And he's such a good singer, and he's such a good guy. We did get pretty close with him and with Mayday Parade as a band. I really love his voice, and I think he brought a lot to the song and it really made it a lot more interesting.”

What Took You So Long?
“I guess I don't like to say that I was tired or uninspired, because I think that can very easily come across as ungrateful. But the truth was that at that point, I was tired and I was uninspired, and I was having a lot of trouble finishing that song and knowing what to write about. I probably wrote three songs worth of lyrics for that song, and trying to find the right combination of words and melodies. Eventually, I just threw my hands in the air, a classic moment of letting go when you write a song and you think about it too hard and the answer comes to you when you finally let go. I was like, 'Honestly, I'm just going to write this song about being uninspired, about wanting to finish the song but not being able to.' I was very out of love with music in general at that time of my life. And I think that in writing it, I was able to make my way back and to fall back in love with music.”

Into the Blue
“The guitar on that song is so fucking cool, and I can say that because I barely wrote any guitar for that song. Joe [Taylor, singer] and Kevin [Maida, guitarist] met up one day and jammed, and one of them had that opening riff. I remember them sending that to me later that night, and being like, ‘Fuck yeah.’ This is what new KP sounds like, you know. Just that chorus slams in and the guitars just feel really heavy, there's so much weight behind them.”

Green Eyes (Polarized)
“This was also very Third Eye Blind-inspired—even threw the ‘third eye’ lyric in there to pay some homage. Another inspiration for this track was ‘Fake Plastic Trees’ by Radiohead—more so lyrically. After I had moved to Los Angeles, I went for a sunset hike, and I just was hearing that opening guitar riff vibe in my head, and sort of the drum feel. I remember getting home and immediately firing up my computer. I had the drum idea first. I programmed that first drum part—it just kind of chills on the snare and hi-hat—and threw the guitar part over it.”

True North
“We took so many different approaches to coming up with vocal ideas for it. I remember meeting up with Joe at his house and playing the song and just playing piano over the song to try and find some cool melodies. We tracked a bunch of stuff on piano over it, which is funny. In the end, the piano melodies became the guitar leads, and Joe came up with some totally original melodies to go over it. Yeah, that song kind of just unfolded very organically, and everyone threw in their two cents, and it's a rocker.”

Miles Away
“I think we knew pretty early on that we wanted it to be a closer. It just had that big, anthemic feeling, I guess. It’s about not being present and trying to be present. I feel like nowadays there's so much noise, whether it's political noise or social media, just all this unnecessary material floating through the airways that people have to process, nonstop, all the time these days. I just found myself falling victim to that, just always reading the negative news, always scrolling through Twitter and being upset. I just felt very removed. I think that song helped me realize that, and helped me appreciate what I do and the time that I have on this earth.”

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