This radio-friendly song features clean singing by Phil Labonte all the way through with lyrics inspired by the way individuals and societies fall into harmful patterns. Speaking about the track's meaning to Sirius XM's Jose Mangin, the All That Remains frontman said:
"People tend to kind of get into kind of ruts in their lives or into patterns and they keep doing the same thing over and over, even though it doesn't produce the results they're hoping for."
"You can see a lot of societal cycles where nations just keep doing the same kind of stuff over, and it doesn't always have great results," he continued. "But still, it seems like a good idea. So, that's kind of the idea is like human beings, whether you're talking about individuals or large groups, they get into these kinds of cycles of repetitive things that can be really destructive and so that's kind of what I'm thinking, that's what 'madness' is."
Some hardcore metal fans criticized the song's radio-friendly sound. Asked by Ryan Daniels of Rock 105.5, Carolina's Pure Rock radio station about the "sellout" accusations leveled at All That Remains for "Madness," Labonte said:
"If you're doing something - making music - and specifically catering to an audience that you have catered to or that has found something to attach to, is it a sellout to try and change and do something different? Or is it a sellout to be, like, 'Okay, this is the safe play where I know I can make my money?' It's, like, I know I that I can cater to this narrow group of people, and if we don't stray, these people will keep buying our records, these people will keep coming to our shows. Is it a sellout to be, like, 'I'm gonna try something different?'"
"People have been saying 'sellout' about us since 2006, since we put out 'The Fall Of Ideals'," he continued. "We started doing clean choruses, and people were, like, 'Oh, sellout!' And it's, like, gimme a f---ing break. We've always tried to push [the envelope] and change."