Circa Survive: The Divine Connection

Interview with Circa Survive vocalist Anthony Green | By Brian Leak

Circa Survive are an anomaly.

In the 13 years since the band’s 2004 inception, their five-man roster of vocalist Anthony Green, rhythm guitarist Brendan Ekstrom, lead guitarist Colin Frangicetto, bassist Nick Beard, and drummer Steve Clifford has remained unchanged. This might seem inconsequential to some, but it’s virtually unheard of – especially with that kind of longevity. More importantly, that unscathed lineup has been allowed to strengthen over time, giving Circa Survive the ability to master their craft; one that’s proven time and time again to be more than just a recognizable sound in the post-hardcore scene.

Now, their sixth full-length studio album, The Amulet, is out now via Hopeless Records.

“We put the band as a family first and a business second. We want to take care of each other like people,” Green says. “I think that basing all our decisions around taking care of everyone’s mental and physical health first has really been the sustaining force behind the band. We all came from bands that sort of turned into day jobs, and we didn’t want that to happen. We wanted it to be exciting, and we wanted it to be something where everyone felt like they were being taken care of. And it still feels like that.”

With the band’s members in their mid-30s—families of their own present and growing—that familial closeness is a major factor in Circa Survive’s durability. Bringing their spouses and children on the road allows the band to continue as one of the hardest working acts in the scene, with a seemingly constant touring schedule that would easily burn out an inexperienced group.

“I think I started to feel it, like, 10 years ago,” Green says laughing, “but I’m gonna push as hard as I possibly can into the future. If the family thing had kept me from touring, I would have stopped before now. I have a hundred million children, and the band’s family is growing.” Furthermore, Green says, “We’ve learned how to adapt to our changing lives. People move across the country, people have children, people get addicted, people get sober. We’re able to function and adapt.”

These real-life changes and challenges have fueled some of the lyrical themes found on The Amulet. Teaming with Hopeless Records for this cycle, Circa Survive’s newest is a composite of everything the band have released before it. Longtime fans will pick up on nuances and sonic elements derived from everything since their 2005 debut LP, Juturna.

“I think the way the band is changing creatively is all a pretty natural trajectory that you see in the daily life of anybody that you grow with,” Green explains. “The themes of [The Amulet] represent the things that are going on in our lives. I had a few people die, I had a few people born. There are relationships that come and go.”

Circa Survive’s tried-and-true delivery with each release has allowed their fans to breathe easy, to know not to expect a change so drastic that it’s shocking or unfamiliar. It only takes a few moments to recognize a Circa Survive tune, and that unique quality remains with The Amulet.

“The people who like our band, they can tell if we like it, and that’s what they want. They want us to make something that we connect with fully, without hesitation, without doubt, and without that look of approval from anybody else,” Green says confidently. “In order to make them happy, all I have to do is make sure I’m being 100 percent authentic and honest with my own connection to what we’re doing. If that’s there, I have literally nothing to worry about.”

“I’ve never worried about trying to sell records or having that be some measure of whether our band was good or not,” he continues. “All I ever worry about is staying connected, and in that connection, you really feel this euphoria that transcends any type of ego or your desires as a human being. It’s quite divine in my eyes. I know that people come to the band for different things, but there is a core group that just wants to see that authenticity come through. Those are the people I am connected with and will always be connected with.”

Purchase The Amulet here.

Photo by Joe Calixito

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