Both lyrically and musically, "Out Of Air" is a microcosm for this album as a whole.
Not only do the lyrics deal directly with our struggles in the music industry and putting our career into other people's hands for the first time, but musically I feel it best answers the question, "what does The Ivins sound like?"
The vibe on this one is heavily inspired by Stereophonics' Language. Sex. Violence. Other?, one of the two most crucial records I was drawing inspiration from when writing this album (the other being AM from Arctic Monkeys). I wanted to capture that "late night" mood on this track and I think we accomplished that in spades; from the hypnotic bass and drums to the subtle synths to the dreamy guitar patterns permeating throughout - the song's got a vibe. Written back in New York in Spring 2014, it has some of my favorite lyrics on the album, while also containing one of my favorite riffs on the album (though because it's happening in the chorus under a bunch of vocals, you can't really hear it too well. This instrumental goes OFF!).
The most notable thing about this song, though, is its guest star: Bill Leverty from Firehouse. Bill is, in my opinion, easily one of the most underrated guitar players of all time...and he also happens to be my cousin. The guy has been my hero since I was a little kid and it has been a lifelong dream of mine to collaborate with him. Sooooo yeah: getting a guitar solo from Bill Leverty - aka a guy that's sold over 8 million albums worldwide and won an American Music Award over Nirvana and Alice Chains - on one of my songs is pretty damn mind-blowing. He did it in like 30 minutes and it elevates the track in a way I could never have dreamed of doing on my own.
As you can hear on the original demo - featured below - I had what was more of a melodic hook guitar line; I wouldn't even consider it a "solo." But as we got closer to recording and Jack and I started to think more critically about the song, we thought it needed something bigger. We wondered if Bill would do it and he graciously agreed and fit us into his rockstar schedule to bless our song. I truly love this song for what is represents, both musically and lyrically - a real turning point in the creation of The Code Duello.