Why did you decide to go into seclusion to write songs for this record?

Matt Thiessen: When writing, I've found that putting a pause on my social life always leads to more thought-out songs. I also don't like creating music with anyone in earshot. Setting up camp at a lake house two hours away from anyone I knew was a key factor in how this record turned out the way it did.

Matt Thiessen and his band

Matt Thiessen and his band

To what degree did prayer factor into this retreat of sorts?

Thiessen: It was huge.Because I was by myself, the only time I got to talk to anyone was when I prayed. A lot of lyrics normally come out of those times.

So what's the overall message?

Thiessen: This album is about staying positive and not letting the things that get us down get to us.

How would you describe it sonically?

Thiessen: It's a melodic rock record. The songs are up-tempo and have a lot of tension notes which, coupled with the lyrics, gives it an urgent sort of feel.

How does the band strike a balance between maturing musically but retaining your youthful enthusiasm?

Thiessen: Playing and touring in a rock-and-roll band for ten plus years keeps us young, and we've been trying to gradually mature our sound since day one.This record represents the current personality of the band.

What's Relient K's place in the secular scene these days?

Thiessen: Hopefully people still like us. We try to write records that fit comfortably in anyone's ears.

What inspired you guys to revive your Mono Vs. Stereo label?

Thiessen: We always thought it'd be fun to sign bands. Toby [Mac] and Joey [Elwood] from [partnership company] Gotee Records are going to give [guitarist Matt] Hoopes and me a shot at building the MVS roster. Having Relient K's stuff on the label gives us even more freedom and control than we've had before.We're excited about the future.

Any plans beyond this record's release?

Thiessen: We're going to keep trying our best to have a positive impact on our listeners, sign and release good records, and support as many cool humanitarian organizations as we can along the way.