It took a long time for Thomas Rhett to record his debut album, and while that may have been frustrating, it resulted in having a strong collection of leftover songs to turn to when it was time to write and record Tangled Up.

The singer says 30 to 40 percent of his sophomore album (in stores Sept. 25) was written before It Goes Like This was released in 2013. "Make Me Wanna" is the song from that album most similar to the funky, beat-driven tracks on Tangled Up, but he treated both projects like they were big empty canvases and he was a painter loaded with colors.

“It was amazing working with people that were not scared to take me to a different level,” Rhett says in this video, exclusive to Taste of Country. He admits he's become smarter about weeding out songs that don't fit the project and dialing in a focused sound. He's also found better ways to tap his creative mind.

“That’s another big thing that I’ve learned this year is that I don’t really write really well in town any more," Rhett says. "If I am going to write and my creative brain is going to be at 100 percent, I have to bring writers on the road with me.”

Tangled Up features singles "Crash and Burn" and "Die a Happy Man." The latter is a ballad Rhett says he wrote with his wife, Lauren, in mind. It's the song she'd been asking him for since he signed his record deal.

See Pics of Thomas and Lauren