Better Than Ezra recaptures magic with "All Together Now"

Better Than Ezra tried to strike a balance between creating a sound that's both familiar and fresh when writing music for its new album, "All Together Now," due out this Sept. 9 on The End Records.

"When you've been doing it for a while, you want to stay inspired," singer Kevin Griffin told CBS News. "But it's a challenge because you want to stay true to your sound, to your roots and also bring something new...For us we've been doing it a while and so if we're going to put something out we want it to be different."

The band members, who rose to fame in the '90s, started working on material last year and hit the studio in the summer of 2013 where they performed the songs live for the first time.

"It definitely has a different approach production-wise. I think that's a credit to Tony Hoffer -- the guy who produced our record," Griffin said about Hoffer, who has previously worked with the Kooks, Beck and Foster the People.

"Tony's aesthetic is different than maybe ours -- production-wise. He wants to have less elements do more. Our default when we produce...is like, 'We need more guitars!"...And Tony is like, 'No we're going to do one guitar and make it sound great and interesting."

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"All Together Now," Better Than Ezra
The End Records

That comes through in songs like lead single, "Crazy Lucky" about "the serendipitous nature of a relationship -- just how it's happenstance, how we meet people and the significant events over the course of our lives are so random," said Griffin.

It all ties in with the album title -- one that Griffin, along with bassist Tom Drummond and drummer Michael Jerome -- had been kicking around for a while.

"It feels like it's what the band's about, which is bringing people together and having fun," Griffin said about the title.

The guys from Better Than Ezra say that's been their goal since forming in 1988 in Louisiana. Looking back on their breakthrough sophomore album, 1990's "Deluxe," Griffin can recall how everything started to change. "We had been together for a while -- almost about six years touring in a van, playing for $50 and a pizza, living the dream, or at least pursuing it. And after being signed suddenly we were the hot band at South by Southwest."

"When we saw that first single 'Good' star reacting that's when we knew we had something," said Griffin, who has co-written songs with countless artists through the years, including Sugarland and Howie Day. "And we had written a lot of songs and they didn't get that kind of reaction. And then the rest of your career you're in an endless search to recapture that."

Ready to recapture some of that magic, Better Than Ezra recently unveiled the ultra-catchy single "Crazy Lucky" and is looking forward to introducing "All Together Now" to fans this fall.

"Every time you put an album out you hope all the dominoes are lined up so they fall in succession and things that happen in the sequence that will make it be successful," said bassist Tom Drummond.

For more on the new album and the band, check out our interview above.

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