The debut single and title track from the band’s sophomore effort, Never Going Back to OK (INO/Columbia), hit radio waves with a fury and scored the band a No. 1 hit on Radio & Record’s Christian Hit Radio chart before the album even released in February. Now, lead singer Josh Havens shares the band’s thoughts behind “Never Going Back to OK.”
The idea actually began at one of our band rehearsals years ago. We were all hanging out after practice, and Brad [Wigg, guitars] asked how everyone liked the new Radiohead album, Hail to the Thief. We’re all big Radiohead fans, but I mentioned that I was a bit disappointed because there were too many electronic elements on it and not enough guitar. I said I really wished they would go “back to OK,” referring to their album OK Computer. Brad made the comment that “Back to OK” sounded like a cool name for a song or album title.
I came back to that idea some time later, but I thought that “Never Going Back to OK” was a better premise. I had just seen someone close to me come out of a 15- year addiction to Meth. It had ruined their life, but now they are back on track and on fire. They want nothing more than to leave that old life behind and move forward. I love the idea of moving forward. There’s a feeling of courage and a sense of vision that’s almost romantic—like an unlikely hero standing up to take on a task of unimaginable risk.
“Never Going Back to OK” is a song about life and moving forward. [It’s] about not being complacent or content with where you are at, but striving to become everything that you were meant to be. Life is so short; live well and make it count.