Anthony Green is a loving father and a passionate musician that strives to do the best he can on whatever project his heart is set on. While working between two bands, Circa Survive and Saosin, as well as his own solo work, Green is an individual capable of doing anything. Even after ten years of fronting American rock band Circa Survive, he admits that he doesn’t feel like he’s aged at all.
Ahead of the band’s upcoming Australian headline tour with alternative rockers, PVRIS, Green talks about the journey of Circa Survive‘s 2014 record, Descensus, his creative outlet when it comes to expressing his emotions and how he approaches the tricky juggling act of balancing his love for music, being a father and constantly putting his time to good use by constantly writing while on tour.
SR. So your album, Descensus, was released last year. How has this album shaped the band’s journey so far?
AG. I feel like this album has sort of made us all better; it’s like a chapter in the history of the band. In this chapter, it’s about better communication and more trust – there’s just so much that has happened since the beginning of this record cycle and since we released the record, it shows us growing up. It’s telling when a band is ten years old and can put a record out and still do well with it. I would rather take half a step forward each time than take any steps back. I feel like that the people who have been listening to our band since the beginning are still there with us while helping recruiting more new people to check the band out and it’s a good feeling to think. While we’ve been doing this for ten years – I still don’t feel like we’re some old band yet, you know. I don’t know – it’s quite relieving we released a record that’s different in my opinion; having us being able to just communicate on a creative and personal level better than ever and just be the band that we’re supposed to be.
SR. It’s obvious it’s such a meaningful record for you guys. Would you say that it was an eye-opening experience that you were able to translate everything that you’ve ever wanted on a Circa Survive album?
AG. I can’t say it’s everything – that’s just such a huge thing; but it’s everything for this album to be what it was. The recording process was creatively exhilarating and therapeutic and the songs trended into these mantras for us in what we were doing, you know. So when I go out every night and I’m singing these songs, I’m re-living and I’m re-evaluating my own personal experience with myself and my friends; it’s everything that I needed it to be.
SR. So I know the record explores dark themes and its instrumentation is quite powerful. Do you feel like you produce your best work when it comes to being true to your emotions?
AG. Absolutely. When something happens in your life, whether you don’t get something you want or you lose something or somebody, if you react to it right away – it’s not always a good thing, you know. It doesn’t always translate the way you want it to but creatively, if you react to something and you write a song and you write a poem or you take a picture or whatever – you react emotionally towards those types of feelings in that way; you can’t really do anything wrong, you know. You just expressed yourself in a way that is healthy and is productive and sometimes, that’s almost like a way of dealing with those types of emotions. I don’t think you can really go wrong with creating music from a personal experience or an emotion that you’re trying to deal with.
SR. So with music, seeing as it’s a creative outlet for you to express your emotions, do you find another way to express them? Do you have a journal of some sort to reiterate your emotions and put it all together and then make it into music?
AG. I do. I do write in a journal. I write all the time – I write poetry and I draw real pictures and I write things that I’m thinking about or I’ll write about something. I think music is the best way to just wrangle with how I’m feeling – even if it depends on how I’m feeling, whether it’d be happy or sad. I don’t think it has ever had the opposite effect but there have been times where I’ve been really happy and I’d written a song and then I would listen to it later and feel disappointed about it. For the most part, it’s been a great way of dealing with the more negative emotions and learning how to express things that were otherwise manifested in an unhealthy way in my life.
SR. Absolutely. I think expressing your emotions in writing is very powerful. I do the same thing as well by ranting on my personal blog and it feels like you have some sort of release which you translated through words.
AG. Yeah. Once you get it all out there, even if nobody sees it, just by writing it down – it’s almost like the weight of it is lifted off from you.
” I remember the first time we ever came to Australia and it was such a foreign thing to me. I never thought that my band would ever tour over there…”
SR. So in the past, you’ve worked with several bands and your own solo venture as well. How have these transitions impacted you as a musician?
AG. It’s strange because I think it just keep things fresh because if I’ve been working on Circa Survive for a really long time, I start seeing things in more of a solo record and I start feeling like more of a heavier thing as it helps me keep the balance. I’ve never been good with balancing things in my life and I love playing, writing and listening to all types of music and I’m learning how to spend the time I need on each one of them. I feel like just being creative all the time – it keeps my creative knuckles strong and you know. If I’m writing a bunch of solo songs in Circa [Survive], I’m in that mode of writing on sitting down and putting my thoughts down and singing about them; it just keeps me on my toes.
SR. Do you feel like you’re more energised when you take on several projects or would you rather focus on one project at a time and completely put in your 100% best?
AG. I think that it’s easier for me to just take it one thing at a time, you know. When I’m doing Circa, I focus totally on Circa – that’s not to say that when I’m touring, I’m not writing solo songs or writing sayings for a few songs but when I’m doing one project, I couldn’t imagine doing two full time bands. I would need to have some time dedicated to one thing than the other. That’s the thing with writing – it’s different when touring ’cause when you’re touring, there’s all this free time so if you’ve already written a record or you don’t have a goal, you can sort of spread yourself out a little bit. If you feel like writing more acoustic songs, you write an acoustic song; if you feel like writing something heavier, you get together with your buddies and you jam. For the most part, I like that scheduled idea of like, ‘Okay, I’m gonna do Circa this year and the next year, I’m gonna focus on this or that.’ It gives me a sense of normalcy, you know; I feel less overwhelmed by it if I know that I’m doing it [projects] in a specific order.
SR. Yeah. I find that musicians live a sort of unstructured life. Do you often feel that way or do you try and plan ahead each time you’re doing certain projects in a band?
AG. Yeah, you’re right. For the longest time, that was totally fine for me. I was living week-to-week and I didn’t really think about the future – not that I’m overly concerned about the future but once you start having children, you think about their future and you wanna be in that future, you know what I mean? You have to make decisions based on whether or not you can afford getting arrested or you can afford to do something that’s gonna harm somebody. Your whole life changes when you have little kids and I was a very reckless, young man for a really long time and I had a very unstructured life and that worked for me at that point.
It stopped working for me a little while ago and I started trying to focus more. I feel more comfortable now with more of a structure. When I’m home, my day is very governed by structure; I wake up and I take care of the boys and I make some time to work and I take care in the house as it’s a very fulfilling thing for me and I feel very calm by it. When I’m on tour, I like to keep a structure; I like to wake up and exercise and I like to play music and try to keep my day busy. The worst thing I feel like you could ever do is be bored; I like to make things, I like to be productive, I like to experience things. Before I had all the time in the world, I was a very lazy person and I didn’t make very much. Now that my time is sort of divided into the attention of my family and my job, I feel like I might cherish the time that I have to really just feel calm and relaxed.
SR. So I think it’s really cool that the band in Australia managed to support My Chemical Romance (MCR) in 2007 as well as Soundwave 2012. Do you consider Australia one of those places you can call home?
AG. I remember the first time we ever came to Australia and it was such a foreign thing to me. I never thought that my band would ever tour over there and playing with such a huge band was such an incredible experience – playing with a band like MCR. We made so many fans over there on that tour that I feel like we’ve relied on those people and every time we come back, there’s these dedicated people who are ready to really have a good time. I always look forward to touring in Australia.
Circa Survive + PVRIS Tour Dates
FRIDAY 18 SEPTEMBER – THE MET, BRISBANE – Licensed all ages
SATURDAY 19 SEPTEMBER – THE METRO, SYDNEY – Licensed all ages
SUNDAY 20 SEPTEMBER – 170 RUSSELL, MELBOURNE – 18+
MONDAY 21 SEPTEMBER – 170 RUSSELL, MELBOURNE – U18
TICKETS ON SALE NOW!