Since the release of their album, Biography of Heartbreak, Arizona natives This Century have been touring non-stop. After wrapping up the 8123 Tour with close friends in Brighten and label-mates The Maine, and A Rocket To The Moon, the band set out on their own headlining tour, The Up Close and Personal Tour, with Nick Santino and the Northern Wind. The guys in This Century took some time out of their day to sit down with Substream and talk about everything from music to their management.
Substream Magazine: Your album, Biography of Heartbreak, has been out for a while. How would you say your fans have reacted and continue to react to these songs versus the music you’ve released in the past?
This Century: It’s definitely been incredibly positive, I think it’s because we went in a more pop direction. People are pretty adaptable, especially if your intentions are still the right intentions, and ours were. We were still trying to write really good pop songs and strong songs, regardless of the production of it. I think fans really did receive it pretty well.
SM: The album was named after track 12 on the record. Is there any reason why that name stood out as opposed to the other names?
TC: The song just felt all encompassing; the title just felt big and we felt like it covered a lot of bases. When you hear an album title it just kind of clicks and you’re just like “That’s it!” It felt like the overall theme of all the songs, and I feel like that’s why it became the title. It had the right vibe for the record.
SM: You guys are headlining the Up Close and Personal Tour, you’ve headlined several other tours, and you’ve toured as a supporting act. Besides a longer set, what would you guys say is the main differences between headlining a tour and being a supporting act?
TC: Headlining a tour is just a little more of a relaxed vibe, you get to the venue early and get to do sound check and make sure everything goes smoothly for the rest of the show, whereas when somebody else is headlining you don’t necessarily get a sound check, you kind of just have to hurry and line check. Also you have to be on everybody else’s schedule, so it’s nice to be on your own time and get to relax in a sense. It’s also nice because you don’t get to play a lot during your set when you’re opening because you kind of have to play songs that are some what familiar to some of the fans that’ll be there and also to kind of keep the set a little bit quicker just because you’re usually on a time crunch. I think on the last tour we played six or seven songs so it was pretty quick. It eliminates some of the freedoms that you have during your own headlining set. Like, for this tour we’ve been messing around with a new song and working on a cover and we would never have that opportunity. It creates a more dynamic show and it makes it more memorable for the fans. A lot of the fans come up after the show and are like, “I’m so glad I got to see you headline a tour because you played more of the songs I wanted to hear.”
SM: You guys wrapped up the 8123 Tour this summer with The Maine who have said that the tour was basically getting a bunch of friends together and playing music every night. Do you think that will be something you’ll be doing more of? Just getting your friends who are in bands together and doing more tours like the 8123 Tour?
TC: Yeah, It’s almost like with the Up Close and Personal Tour we got to play with Nick (Santino) everyday, we share the venues and we travel together. With other bands it’s definitely not something we’re opposed to at all. It’s so much fun to tour with your friends, it’s a little different because even when we’re at home we’re hanging out with them. If we have other tour opportunities that make more sense though, then we’ll probably take those. It’s about balancing the two things. We’re very fortunate that we have friends we can tour with, not everybody has that opportunity. It creates more of that family vibe which is nice because it’s comfortable, but sometimes you need to get out of the comfort zone to grow. When we were on tour with Good Charlotte we got to watch them every night and learn just as much as we normally would but in a different way that made the band stronger. It’s just like anything else, you can’t do anything too extreme. You have to find a balance.
SM: Speaking of finding balance, when you are on tour with your close friends is it hard to find the balance between work and play?
TC: There’s a lot more of everybody just messing around. A lot of the time we’ll be a lot more easy-going about stuff. We just don’t take everything as seriously as we should sometimes. We don’t take ourselves very seriously, ever.
SM: December 18th was the hometown show in Arizona, is a hometown show something that you always look forward to more than a show in another city?
TC: It’s nice, but it’s also kind of stressful because everybody wants to be guest listed, everyone needs to know where the show is even though it’s available on the Internet. You’re dealing with everybody’s family being there as well as the performance so you can’t really get into that mode you need to be in. It’s also nice though because it is our families and it is our home crowd that has really supported us since 2007. So it’s nice to have that but it’s also stressful.
SM: 8123 started as management and it’s evolved into so much more. What does 8123 mean to you guys?
TC: I think it’s become like a home base that has a culture around it. It’s just been created by the fans that a lot of the bands share, I think those kids kind of created a culture around 8123 and they make it was it is.
Interview by Erin Stevens