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It's a 'New' day for Taking Back Sunday

  • Story Highlights
  • Taking Back Sunday's new album is "New Again"
  • Band's previous album came out three years ago; group happy to recharge
  • Group's had some rough experiences, including knocking out bassist Matt Rubano
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LOS ANGELES, California (CNN) -- Taking Back Sunday is recharged.

Taking Back Sunday's new album, "New Again," came out last week.

Taking Back Sunday's new album, "New Again," came out last week.

Having taken a long break between albums -- it's been three years since the last set, "Louder Now" -- the Long Island, New York, rock band is signaling a fresh outlook with its fourth album. Out last week, it's called "New Again."

Scan the quintet's twenty-something faces and you'll notice that something is indeed new: the addition of guitarist Matt Fazzi.

"With that break and bringing Fazzi into the band it's almost like [there's] a flame that's been rekindled or a spark just got brighter," said lead singer Adam Lazzara. Video Watch Taking Back Sunday run amok »

Led by the thrashing single "Sink Into Me" (the music video has the band slowly, messily disappearing into a sinkhole), the album just debuted at No. 7 on the Billboard 200 chart.

CNN caught up with Taking Back Sunday at a magazine photo shoot in Los Angeles where the band shared stories about striking poses and striking each other.

CNN: How do you feel about all that nonmusical stuff like posing for photos, makeup ... ?

Adam Lazzara: It's something over the years we've had to become very comfortable with. I think we're getting pretty good at it.

Matt Rubano: We try to approach everything with our way of doing things and our sense of humor so that it's not uncomfortable.

Lazzara: And I've seen "Zoolander" enough times ...

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Rubano: That's the bible. "Zoolander" and Tyra [Banks]. We kind of split it up between those two things. I've learned everything that I know about posing from Tyra. So thank you Miss Banks. I can smile with my eyes like Tyra does.

CNN: Tell me about the single ["Sink Into Me"].

Lazzara: Through all the songs on the record it's the one that came about the most organically. Fazzi just started playing the main riff in the song and then Mark came in on the drums and then 15 minutes later we have a tune.

Rubano: It also has the frenetic energy that we've always been known for, so it was kind of like an obvious choice to represent the new record.

CNN: Some might say that you've taken your music in a more melodic direction on this album. Do you agree with that?

Rubano: I think we've always taken steps forward when it comes time to make a record.

Lazzara: Yeah, you can't be standing in still water.

Rubano: We consider our band a living thing, so the new musical territory that we went into on this record is what keeps us excited and what naturally and organically came out of us. Yeah, there's more vocal harmonies, there's more emphasis on trying to stay focused on writing a great song and that's what a lot of the artists that influence us do.

CNN: What do you like most about being in a rock band?

Lazzara: There are very few things I don't like about being in a rock band. Ever since I was a little kid this was always something that I would love to be doing but never thought was really possible. We're living the dream.

Rubano: We tour a lot so we miss birthdays and holidays and our wives and girlfriends and puppies and children and fish.

Lazzara: I don't think any one of us have fish.

Rubano: Strike the fish. We miss all the other things. But you kind of learn to adapt and that's a little bit of the sacrifice. But we've been to Japan and Australia and places that as a dishwasher or a waiter I really wasn't on track to going to see. Music has brought us around the world, which is unbelievable.

CNN: Adam, what's the most ridiculous thing you've done on stage?

Lazzara: There's a very long list. I dislocated my hip once. That was pretty ridiculous and painful at the same time.

Rubano: You almost broke my skull.

Lazzara: I knocked him out cold one time in front of 15,000 people. It's nothing I'm proud of. It's funny now. But it wasn't so much then. ...

[When I started singing with the band] I just started throwing the microphone around. ... The bigger the stage the more comfortable I would get with it and just see how far I could throw.

[One night,] first song ... I toss it. And then you just hear (makes thud sound). And I looked back and he was flat on his back bleeding profusely from his head. Not awesome.

Rubano: Yeah. To your credit I wasn't really paying attention. And when you're in Taking Back Sunday, while you're performing you have to play your instrument and focus on the crowd and also make sure that you're not going to get decapitated. And I wasn't looking. ...

I was just pouring blood from my face. And they rushed me off stage. And the band kept playing. Thanks, guys. Thanks for doing that.

CNN: How difficult is it for you to all stay friends?

Lazzara: Funny you should ask that. For a long time in the band I think there was a lot of animosity. ... But now after that little break and since we've been doing everything that we've been doing now with "New Again" coming out, I haven't started hating any of you guys yet.

Rubano: Part of the symbolism behind "New Again" is not only musical, but definitely personal. Like we've spent more time together -- the five of us socially -- in the last year and a half than we ever have before that. It's really a trip when we feel like we're going through something like that, but when people that are watching the band feel like they can see the strength of those relationships and the fact that we're really enjoying ourselves, that really affirms that it's actually happening. I really love all these guys. Very much.

Lazzara: Stop it.

Rubano: Since Matt's joined the band he's become one of my closest friends ... and these guys I've known for years and years. And we've only gotten closer and more comfortable with each other. And it works musically tenfold better than it ever has.

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CNN: Do you want to have a big group hug or something?

Lazzara: Let's do it (all five band members hug each other).

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