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Interview | Anberlin

June 16, 2009 –
By: Megan Washington | Filmed By: Whitney Johnson
Label: Universal Republic Records
Video Interview: Available here.

* Your latest single is “Breaking,” and we’ve found a lot of conflicting articles saying that you guys have done a video for it, and that you haven’t done a video for it. So, what’s the deal?
: We have not. Hopefully we can do one, it’s just right now we are on tour and right after this謡ell we’re off but right after that we go overseas耀o I don’t know if we’ll be able to do one for awhile. But, yeah, we don’t have one done.

* Do you guys know what you want to do in it, yet?
Christian: Break stuff.
Nate: Yeah. We’re gonna break some hearts.
Christian: Mhmm.
Nate: No, we actually do have–talked to some of the people that did our last video “Feel Good,” I talked to them so we have some ideas that we’re throwing around, but nothing for sure yet.

* You guys are going to be going on an Australian tour, like you mentioned, with The Academy Is… So, did you guys get to pick to bring them along or how did that work out?
I think we did. I think we were just looking for some band, friends of ours, that were looking to go over to Australia. I think, weæ‚ ‘ve known them for a long timeå‚­ut we hung out with them really on Warped Tour a lot, they were awesome dudes. I can’t even remember, I don’t even know..
Nate: I think we talked to them about it. Someone mentioned something to them…. No, on Warped Tour, they were like “We should tour together!” We were like, “Yeah!” Then I guess their manager contacted our manager and stuff. I don’t think they’ve ever been to Australia.
Christian: No, they have.
Nate: Oh, they have?
Christian: They were ending Warped Tour and going to Australia, I thought.
Nate: I don’t know.
Christian: I don’t know.
Nate: We’ve been there a ton so it just happened to where they would come out with us, which is awesome.
Christian: Yeah, we’re stoked.
Nate: We’re excited.

* What are some of the advantages and disadvantages of touring overseas in other countries?
The advantage is, I mean especially for Australia because it’s weird because this is like our fourth time going, so the crowds…
Christian: Fifth.
Nate: Fifth?
Christian: I think so. This will be my third time since I’ve been in the band.
Nate: Oh yeah, fifth. So, the crowd there is insane, like our fans our nuts. The shows are always huge, you know, and a lot of fun. The disadvantage would be that it is just so far from home. You can’t use your phones or anything, and it feels far too. I think that’s the disadvantage.
Christian: Yeah, the advantage to me is that that’s ridiculous that that’s our job. You know what I mean? We get to travel and play shows, and go to really cool places. Places that I never really thought I would go when I was younger.
Nate: Or people that save up their money their whole lives to take a trip like that. I mean, we get to do that for a job, so…
Christian: Yeah, to go travel. We get paid, you know, it’s like our job. So that’s kind of ridiculous.
* I’m jealous.
Christian: Disadvantage, for me is eating.
* Vegemite Sandwiches!
Vegemite is the worst crap ever.
Christian: Some of the food overseas, depending on where you are, is very bazaar. In Japan, I’m vegetarian, so trying to eat in Japan is like impossible. If I can’t find a Subway, then I’m not eating. It’s crazy.
Nate: That’s true. I eat everything, so that’s not a disadvantage for me.
Christian: Food in England is very special. Fried everything.

* Since the bands inception, what has been the biggest obstacle that you guys have had to overcome?
Ummm, I’d say for us, finding a guitar player. Before Christian, we went through four‚ think four or five. That was a big one for us for awhile until we found Christian. It was just stressful. We never found anyone that we felt like would be like an actual member. So that for awhile, that for awhile was a big deal. But, we found Christian, and it was pretty smooth from there.
Christian: Kind of smooth.

* What is Anberlin looking forward to in the future?
Christian: More of the same, I guess. We, atleast since I’ve been in the band, it’s always felt like there’s been forward momentum. Every tour seems to be better. Around every corner has been new and better and bigger things. You know, just cool great blessings. Surprises to all of us. Things that we just thought we’d never be able to do. Entering a new level where you kind of never thought you would be.
Nate: Yeah.
Christian: So hopefully, just more of that. That’d be great. More tours, more…
Nate: Just keep doing what we love.
Christian: We “might” be going to some new places we haven’t been overseas.

* What do you guys attribute to your success?
Good looks.
Nate: (laughs) I’d say it’s just because we’ve been playing together so long. We just keep growing as a band. I don’t know if there’s an actual pin point. It’s always been like a super slow, but gradual, build for us. After this record, when we do another one, we’ll have like five records out. That’s insane to me. Do you know what I mean? Lasting power these days–normally bands come and go in like a week. It’s just crazy. I think, but I don’t know, I guess it’s because our music, but it’s because we’ve been playing together as long as we have. It’s just been a slow build, but I guess that would be the reason for our success.
Christian: Who knows. If someone knew the answer, they’d be a bazillion-aire. We’ve seen so many other great bands‚­ands you would think would be very successful溶ot get any success. Then, other bands that you think suck are huge. It’s weird.
Nate: Yeah, it’s really weird.
Christian: It’s really weird why certain bands succeed and the other ones don’t. I mean, Anberlin has definitely been working at it for a long time now. You know, bustin’ hump since he was thirteen or something like that. It has alot to do with working hard.
Nate: Working hard.

* You mentioned a fifth album. Have you guys started writing material for it?
Mhmm, yeah.
Nate: Yeah, a little bit. Not like full on like sat down to write the record, but songs here and there for sure.

* Do you have any tentative plans of when you would be demoing or recording it?
Next year, definitely. Nothing this year. Who knows when next year. It kind of depends on how this record does.
Christian: Hopefully we’ll get ten singles.
Nate: Hopefully, it will be two years from now.
All: (laugh)

* You guys have previously said that Taking Back Sunday is one of the three bands that you’ve always wanted to tour with. So what is it about them that has made you guys want to tour with them?
I think it’s just because, not that they are like identical to us, but I’ve always thought that we would fit really well. They’re just a rock band, you know? The other ones we said were Jimmy Eat World and Foo Fighters, so we always just pick bandsé nd we love that band. So we always just wanted to play with bands that we actually really were into and listen to. So I think that’s why.

* What have you guys learned about yourselves on this particular tour?
I don’t need near as many clothes as I think I do. I just took home a whole suitcase of stuff I haven’t even looked at on this tour. So I think I’ve learned about myself, I can live off of two pairs of pants and shirts. That’s really shallow. (laughs)
Christian: I know, that’s good! That’s good.
Nate: No, I seriously just packed謡e have almost a month lefté nd I use to bring like two full suitcases. So, I’m trying to cut back.
Christian: Simplifying. I don’t know what I’ve learned on this tour. I read some books. So, I learned some stuff from those books. What did I learn about myself…
* What books, Twilight?
Christian: Definitely not (laughs). I’m reading this book by Cormac McCarthy. He wrote The Road, and he wrote No Country For Old Men. Is it Blood Meridian that I’m reading?
Nate: Yeah, Blood Meridian.
Christian: Blood Meridian, yeah, it’s good.
Nate: I’m reading The Orchard Keepers by him too.
Christian: There’s alot of Cormac Mc謡e actually got everybody in the band to read The Road on Warped Tour. Was it Warped Tour?
Nate: No, it was…
Christian: I read it on Warped Tour.
Nate: You read it on Warped Tour. You told me about it, and I read it.
Christian: The winter tour everybody read it…
Nate: Yeah, England. We were overseas, I bought it and read it in two days. Then everyone read it within a week.
Christian: Joey read it. Joey doesn’t usually read books.
Nate: Yeah, we just taught him how to read so he could read a book.
Christian: Or we’d read it out loud to him.

* With having four studio albums, what is the decision process like for deciding which songs you guys are going to play on tour?
It’s stressful.
Christian: Usually, it’s pretty葉here’s a good consensus. Everyone’s usually on the same page. The songs that are stronger than other songs usually stick out to everybody. There generally might be a few that we disagree on. Then it’s just kind of personal preference.
Nate: Usually it’s obvious.
Christian: For the bulk of it, you know what are the strong songs, what are the weaker songs, but then when you get to kind of between the weaker songs it’s like, “Well I kinda like this one a little more than that one.”
Nate: Yeah.
Christian: There’s a lot of different variables that go into deciding which ones are going to make the record.

* What direction do you currently see the band moving in?
Less poppy.
Nate: Yeah, definitely. I think this next record will be the least poppy of any record we’ve done. Not that we’re going to change our sound and just be super dark, but definitely darker.
Christian: When New Surrender was written, everything–not that anything is going bad for the band–b­ut everything was so good. I think that everybody was in a good mood.
Nate: …really happy.
Christian: Really happy! Stephen had just gotten married, we had just signed to a major label, like all of this crazy stuff was happening.
Nate: So we came out really happy about it.
Christian: I mean, that kinda–Your mental mindset definitely goes into the kind of songs that come out.
Nate: Not that we’re going to try and write depressing songs, but I think there’s deeper issues and deeper things that will be…
Christian: When New Surrender was done we were like, “Wow, this is a really happy record.” Not that that’s a bad thing.
Nate: I don’t think we thought it was going to be that poppy. Then when we finished it, we were like, “Oh, this is a pop record.” ‘Cause our previous record Cities is not as poppy.

* Do you guys have any pre-show rituals?
Christian: Mhmm. Stretching…
Nate: Stretching, yeah.
Christian: We slap each other in the face.
Nate: We do it every single night.
Christian: We all kiss each other before we go on. That’s the new one.
Nate: (laughs) That’s the new one. We started that last night.
Christian: We generally pray. Someone prays, depending on where you are in the circle. We all like get together.
Nate: We do a chant. We change it every night.
Christian: …on whatever word someone picks.
Nate: 1-2-3-Something.

* Any final words?
: I love my life.
Nate: I love his life.