As if they knew the deepest desires of my heart, Chicago’s Knuckle Puck have just released their first taste of new music since the release of their sophomore album Shapeshifter in 2017. The new single, titled “Tune You Out” is our first look at what’s to come for the five-piece in 2020, and if it’s any indication, fans of the band are in for a big year.
Right off the bat, “Tune You Out” sounds exactly like what fans have come to expect from the band. Honest and poignant, the song is catchy with a chorus that is delightfully irresistible and encapsulates the best qualities that Knuckle Puck have to offer. Headlined by gentle riffs with frontman Joe Taylor’s tender vocals over the top, the song explodes quickly, deserting calmness for an excitable jumble of commotion.
There’s a real sense of familiarity that comes with “Tune You Out”, but that’s not to assume that the song is recycled by any means. Placid verses bursting into energetic choruses is a formula the band have virtually perfected, and while the single follows that same blueprint, there’s something about it that just feels fresh. Sonically, “Tune You Out” seems to adopt the message behind the music, with guitarist and vocalist Nick Casasanto explaining that the song is “about giving yourself and others the appropriate time and space to grow.” After spending almost the entirety of 2019 working on new music, it’s safe to say that the band have come out with a new lease on life and a strong outlook for their future.
Lyrically, the song also seems to paint the picture of tempers on the boil and unresolved disputes. There’s an unavoidable irritability that underlies the song and an undeniable frustration that pours through musically, but it’s the way the band juxtaposes these outbursts of emotion with flashes of tranquillity that truly define the song. At times, blistering instrumentals give way to composure while the opposite is equally as true. It’s the ups and downs of “Tune You Out”, like any good rollercoaster, that keeps you coming back for more.
For me personally, it’s the trifecta of vocals from Taylor, Casasanto and bassist/vocalist Ryan Rumchaks that hit “Tune You Out” for a home run. All three bounce off each other incredibly, while the sentimental surges of Rumchaks’ in particular add so much depth to the song wherever they appear. The band have managed to strike a remarkably effective balance between the three that takes the single to a whole new level.
Arriving with a music video, the song’s visuals are a mash up of studio footage taken during the time that Knuckle Puck recorded their third album which remains unannounced. While the band continue to tease new music, it’s safe to say it’s coming soon and I think we’re all delightfully excited to see what’s coming next. “Tune You Out” is a boisterous and excited single, taking the best of Knuckle Puck and somehow managing to make it even better, and if it’s any suggestion of what the band have in store for us I’m not really sure if we’re ready.