Few bands ever achieve what Circa Survive has in the past 10 years. The fact that the progressive post-hardcore quintet led by charismatic frontman Anthony Green is now six albums deep into a decade-long career, with all five original members, while still being able to seamlessly balance consistent touring, family lives and countless other projects is no easy feat—but to write music so consistently strong in musical technicality, lyrical poignancy and outstanding vocal variety is what’s most impressive of all.
Over time, it’s undoubtedly paid off for Circa, with tens of thousands of fans, devoted and casual alike, tuning in to hear the band’s undeniably unique take on an already fascinating subset of alternative rock. With over a decade down, the band decided earlier this year to honor their freshman LP Juturna—an astounding debut-turned-genre classic that showed the act wasn’t about to get forgotten in the crowd. From mid-October to late November, Circa Survive rocked and rollicked theaters coast to coast, performing Juturna from front-to-back in its entirety. Along with tourmates Rx Bandits and Citizen, Circa Survive crafted one of the fall’s best tours, pulling out every stop to ensure one hell of an evening for all 26 cities.
This brings us to October 31, 2015 – where Circa Survive would soon perform to a packed Royal Oak Music Theatre in Royal Oak, Michigan, for a Halloween night no one would ever forget. We sat down with vocalist Anthony Green to chat about Juturna, a look into the album’s writing process, his hopeful music projects and being a father.
With this being the 10-year anniversary tour of Juturna, how has it been returning to the album every night, and playing it through in a live setting?
ANTHONY GREEN: It’s weird. It’s really weird. It’s works so cohesively, and the show goes by so fast because everything blends together so well. It’s weird to think that the band has been around for 10 years and that this is a thing.
Years after Juturna was initially released, you mentioned that a lot of your writing was influenced by the movie Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind. What about the film did you take away for the album?
At the time, my current girlfriend and I, who became my present-day wife, were going through all of this weird shit, and we just young and dumb. We were just trying to figure all of our shit out. During that, we went to go see that [movie] together the night I thought that we were going to break up. There were all of these themes about growing up, relationships, falling in love, falling out of love and not knowing the difference. There are so many crazy themes in that movie that I felt like I could relate to and feel like subconsciously they’d fit on the record.
One of the biggest calling cards of not only Circa Survive, but any of your numerous projects, has been how unique and dynamic your voice is. Do you remember the first time you knew that you had a strong voice and knew it was something you wanted to pursue?
I remember people telling me that I had a good voice, but they were the same kind of person who didn’t want to sing for whatever band we were in. Because of that, I always felt like I was the only one that would do it, whenever I was playing music with people. I never really felt like I have any different or special qualities, but people would always tell me, “Your voice is so high!” I just liked doing it, and it filled an urge in me that I never even knew existed. I don’t think I ever could imagine myself doing it for a living until the dudes in Saosin asked me to move to California and join their band. Even then, I just figured I’d do this for a while and see where life takes me, but I never imagined I’d be doing it for a living, or people would want anything to do with it. It’s weird. It’s still weird today—every fucking morning I wake up on a tour bus in a bunk and think, “Oh, fuck, this is crazy—how the fuck did this happen? How do I keep it?”
Is there anything you haven’t done with music that you’d like to explore?
So much. I couldn’t even begin to detail the things I want to try. I want to start a punk band, do a solo record that’s really stripped down. I’d love to attempt to do some old-school, traditional-style country music. I’ve always wanted to do a project with Keith Goodwin [of Good Old War], where we make really weird, trippy music, almost like Animal Collective or Panda Bear type-stuff, or straight-up strictly weird stoner-ass techno. I want to make a High & Driving record someday. I have a project with Will Yip that I’ve been working on called Suneaters that will hopefully someday get released. There’s just so much. So much. I literally couldn’t live two lifetimes and fulfill all of the cool stuff that I want to do. Music is vast: Everything you could imagine, I want to try it. The next thing is I’m going to re-record all of the Circa records in Spanish—just kidding, but that would be pretty sweet. I would hire someone to do it in Spanish!
As a father of three, what has been the biggest joy that being a parent has brought you?
Being a parent is like being a musician in a way. The joy from it is self-created and self-contained. People aren’t going to come pat you on the back and tell you that you did a great job raising your kid. You never know what’s going to happen, it’s like any relationship. I love them so much and I know how much they love me—it’s just the coolest thing. It’s this true connection that I’ve never felt with anybody, except for maybe my wife, which is this totally different thing. Just being around them and living my life with them like a big pack or tribe—that there is the greatest part about having kids and being a dad, just being with them. We like gross things, we like to climb things, we like food a lot, we read a lot of books together, we love music. We love to play music and listen together. My whole family likes to dance, so we dance together a lot. And even now, missing them, it’s a bittersweet thing because it sucks to long for and not be around somebody. At the same time, however, just knowing that I have them in my life is so huge for me and such a great feeling to experience is that longing—longing for somebody who’s there. I love them and I know they love me. Just being around them is the best reward.