KC: No, no, first one in four years. We probably started writing in August. In the past, it's always been like, have a little practice here and there to get the ball rolling. This time we opted to like&ldots; life was just&ldots; with seven guys, not to get back to kids and all that, but scheduling seven guys with families and all this stuff going on&ldots;

AB: We just shut everything down. Said, "let's just batten down the hatches."

KC: Instead of doing it piecemeal, let's just everyone get ready to clear the decks in August and focus 120% on it.

Hmm, that came around remarkably quickly. have you done any of your previous albums that fast?

KC: Never. But we also never dedicated that kind of time to it. I feel like that's how most bands do it. I hear about a lot of lot of bands who write in the studio and demo. We did it in our crappy practice space and demoed on a boom box.

AB: With the last records we've done&ldots;we were playing "State of Massachusetts" for a year before we went into the studio and recorded what ended up being The Meanest of Times. We were probably playing "Worker's Song" a year before we recorded Black Out. My point is, there were always songs that worked their way out in the practice space, and we started going, "That's one for the new record." With this, it was thoroughly circle the wagons, shut everything down, eight or nine hours a day, just working.

KC: This is why I think there's a little more anticipation for this album. On every other record, there are two or three songs that led the way. People heard them and got a taste for what direction we were going. Then we'd put it out. Whereas on this, it's kind of, "Hey, what have you been up to for four years?" "Here it is!" Maybe it's a little more of a surprise under the Christmas tree. Especially for us, 'cause, wow, "How are people going to react to these songs?" and stuff. Kevin Youkilis had a charity event. We played at that, and it was the first time we've played two of those songs live. It's like taking the training wheels off, y'know what I mean? Playing them for other people. A big moment, actually.

Think you'll do future albums like that?

KC: It worked on this one. Who knows where we'll be. I know the staying away from writing gave us that&ldots;.It's so hard to not have the write, record, tour system&ldots;We had that cycle going on for so many years, it was nice to just stop. Not that we went off the road and went on hiatus, we were still traveling and touring, but we weren't on tour going, "We've got to start writing, man!" and letting the panic set in. We're like, "Y'know what? We've put out so many records in such a short period of time, basically six albums, two lives albums, numerous EPs, all within the span of 12 years. We're like, "We can afford to wait. The fans will be more anticipating, and it's not like we're putting out a new record before they're even ready for a new record."

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