MUTEMATH release their new album, Vitals, today, November 13. The album is the New Orleans band's fourth, and their first since 2011's Odd Soul. Don't call that four-year gap a hiatus, though -- throughout that time, the members of MUTEMATH were hard at work at what would become Vitals.
"I'll admit, album four, it takes a little more work," vocalist Paul Meany tells ABC Radio. "I feel like things that used to naturally come easy to us when we first got started, it took a little more hunting, you know? And it took more time."
In that hunting, MUTEMATH found a theme for Vitals, which the band categorizes as a "rebirth" of sorts.
"I think as a whole, a lot of the songs are dealing with confronting a particular ending," Meany explains. "Whether it be figurative or literal, I think that part of it's blurry, but the idea of confronting this ending, and what do you do with it, you know? How do you find, or what is that thing that keeps you moving on, that keeps you believing that tomorrow's going to be better than what you're facing today? Whatever that stuff is, that's what we began to write about."
Initially, however, that theme took MUTEMATH down a bit of a darker path. Then, in a songwriting marathon inspired by a New Year's resolution, the band wrote "Monument," which would become the lead single from Vitals.
"'Monument' was probably the first song that began to say [the theme] in a way that felt right," says Meany. "Because a lot of the early ideas we were writing, it was just kind of depressing when you listen to it, these sort of end-of-the-road type of songs as we're kinda coping with our own mortality and trying to find the spark again."
"It felt really inspiring, it felt happy," he adds of "Monument." "We've never had many ideas that felt happy in recent years, and we wanted to uncover that. I always had described a MUTEMATH song as...a picture of something dark, but it should be framed in light. And that's kinda what we're always after."
MUTEMATH will embark on a North American tour in support of Vitals starting in February.
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