After Midnight

Album: Neighborhoods (2011)
Charted: 88


  • This is the second single to be released by American pop punk group blink-182 from their Neighborhoods album. The song was premiered on Zane Lowe's UK BBC Radio 1 show on September 6, 2011. It has nothing to do with the Eric Clapton's J.J. Cale penned hit boogie of the same title.
  • This was one of four new songs written late on for the album after blink-182 canceled their European tour. It was originally penned in separate studios before the band recorded it together.
  • According to an interview with Alternative Press, this is drummer Travis Barker's favorite track on the album and was originally titled "Travis Beat."
  • The bittersweet midtempo rocker includes the lyric, "Standing close to death." It is one of several tracks on Neighborhoods to touch on matters of mortality. Others include "Hearts All Gone" ("Let's drink ourselves to death") and "Natives" ("Maybe I'm better off dead").
  • The recording of Neighborhoods found bassist Mark Hoppus and Travis Barker laying down their parts in Los Angeles while guitarist Tom Delonge did his portion in his studio in San Francisco. Asked by NME whether it felt strange not recording in the same room, Hoppus said: "That's the tension we need in Blink. I think it is the way forward for us. It's the way we can all work together and explore all of our ideas. In the past, when we've all been in the same room, you're recording your parts while the other guys are sitting around waiting and this way enables each of us to explore every single idea we might have, in our own time, in our own comfort space."
  • The song was one of the last written for Neighborhoods and originated from a beat that Travis Barker came up with one day in the studio. The beat grabbed the rest of the band immediately and within two or three hours, they'd written the basics of the song.
  • Much like their hit single "I Miss You," the lyrics were handled by both Hoppus and DeLonge. "Tom and I divided the responsibility of writing the lyrics — Tom did the verses and I did the chorus — and we didn't necessarily know what the other was writing about, but it fit together pretty well," Hoppus explained to MTV News.
  • DeLonge threw in some lyrical references to "I Miss You" in his verses. He explained to MTV News: "I threw in a little homage to 'I Miss You,' because, specifically on this song, I remember Travis saying that we should have something in the category of 'I Miss You' [on this album], and that's when he showed us the beat. So when we wrote that, I remember that was in my mind."
  • Having directed the visual for their first come back single "Up All Night," the band decided to go with Isaac Rentz again to shoot the video for this song. "We went through probably 30 different treatments for this video, and a lot of them were great, and a lot of them weren't so great but Isaac's stuck out as a really cool idea," Mark Hoppus told MTV News. "We wanted it to be something different than just a bunch of people having fun and having a party; we wanted it to be a little darker, a little more troubled, and Isaac's treatment did that."

    Hoppus went on to explain that the video fits the character of the track: "The song itself is about troubled love, it's about damaged people who fall in love," he said "and the video takes place in a psychiatric ward, and this guy and this girl escape from their rooms and have a night of romance and passion and fun and wild existence."
  • The video features blink-182 performing in a hangar that is the world's largest freestanding wooden structure. It was built in the 1940s to construct blimps. Mark Hoppus told Spinner: "It was just this really cool setting - the way that they lit it, the way that they shot it. It just had this really industrial yet organic feel to it. It was a good combination of the two because it is obviously a giant superstructure but because it's wooden and because the way that they shot it with water on the ground, everything looked really organic as well."

Comments: 1

  • Ak from Somewhere, IrelandThis is my favourite song from the new album. It's full of passion and enthusiasm but there's also a lot of emotion in there and the lyrics are quite moving. Further proof that Blink-182 are amazing artists, capable of writing incredible songs.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Hawksley Workman

Hawksley WorkmanSongwriter Interviews

One of Canada's most popular and eclectic performers, Hawksley tells stories about his oldest songs, his plentiful side projects, and the ways that he keeps his songwriting fresh.

Michael Schenker

Michael SchenkerSongwriter Interviews

The Scorpions and UFO guitarist is also a very prolific songwriter - he explains how he writes with his various groups, and why he was so keen to get out of Germany and into England.

Rick Springfield

Rick SpringfieldSongwriter Interviews

Rick has a surprising dark side, a strong feminine side and, in a certain TV show, a naked backside. But he still hasn't found Jessie's Girl.

Director Paul Rachman on "Hunger Strike," "Man in the Box," Kiss

Director Paul Rachman on "Hunger Strike," "Man in the Box," KissSong Writing

After cutting his teeth on hardcore punk videos, Paul defined the grunge look with his work on "Hunger Strike" and "Man in the Box."

Kerry Livgren of Kansas

Kerry Livgren of KansasSongwriter Interviews

In this talk from the '80s, the Kansas frontman talks turning to God and writing "Dust In The Wind."

Phil Hurtt ("I'll Be Around")

Phil Hurtt ("I'll Be Around")Songwriter Interviews

Phil was a songwriter, producer and voice behind many Philadelphia soul classics. When disco hit, he got an interesting project: The Village People.