Saosin: Chasing Shadows
Almost 12 years ago, Anthony Green left Saosin for what we thought was for good. A decade on, Green shocked the world by reuniting with his former bandmates – and, just when you thought they were done, they made an entire album together. So, why now? And what next? BLUNT poses all the big questions to Green – just after he tucked his kids into bed.
“Y’know it’s still weird to hear people say that?” Anthony Green – singer, songwriter, celebrated post-hardcore frontman and father of three – is musing out loud over the fact that he is being introduced over the phone as ‘Anthony from Saosin’. It’s like this weird little reminder to myself – ‘Oh yeah, I am that again’. For the last 10 years, it’s been ‘Anthony from Circa [Survive]’. That was me. Even seeing my name next to it on the Warped Tour, or seeing myself in these photos… it’s so fucking strange.”
So, how did we get here? A quick refresher course for those of you not paying attention up the back: Green formed Saosin way back when in 2003 alongside some other friends from the Newport Beach area. The band released one EP, Translating The Name, before Green promptly severed ties and formed Circa Survive. Although Circa are still active – they recently finished touring in support of their fifth album, 2014’s Descensus – and Saosin carried on without Green for another two albums using vocalist Cove Reber, the ghost of Translating‘s past would follow each camp around for all of the intervening years. In 2014, after over a year of speculation, Green rejoined the band – originally just for a tour celebrating Translating The Name‘s 10-year anniversary, but then on a permanent basis.
“I feel like it’s this journey that anyone who has ever liked the band has been on,” says Green of his time in and out of Saosin. “It’s cool in that way. Everyone in this band has been through so much – it’s crazy how much everyone has changed in 10 years. Some things are exactly the same, but it feels to me like the rest of the guys in Saosin have gotten so much better at communicating with one another. It couldn’t have been easier for me to jump back into that situation.”
“The whole idea of the reunion was focusing on the good side of our time together. We weren’t trying to dredge up any old grudges or any disagreements.”
As has been well documented, Green was going through major struggles with both depression and drug addiction through both the end of his time in Saosin and the beginning of his time with Circa Survive. He is now clean living and a dedicated family man, a world away from the wiry 20-something from the Translating The Name days.
“The whole idea of the reunion was focusing on the good side of our time together,” says Green. “We weren’t trying to dredge up any old grudges or any disagreements. It was just us thinking to ourselves, ‘Remember this really cool thing that we did? This thing that so many people loved and so many people connected with? Let’s do that again’. It was that simple.”
After the initial run, the band toured again in 2015 and confirmed that they would indeed be working toward a new studio album with Green on board. The result is Along The Shadow, the band’s third album overall and first to feature Green. Acknowledging the growth that Green and his bandmates – drummer Alex Rodriguez, guitarist Beau Birchall and bassist Chris Sorenson – have made since Translating The Name, it says a lot that the album is a testament to both the band’s post-hardcore roots and the progression they have made as musicians in the intervening years.
“With every record that I make, I’m immediately responding to the music that I’m presented with,” says Green of his contributions to Along The Shadow. “I was writing my parts along with Will Yip from a studio in Philadelphia, and working with him really helped me to evolve ideas for what this record was going to be. He’s the best partner to work with on that side of things – he knows exactly how to get the most out of every song, and he’s a real guiding light in that regard. The idea of making my vocals a lot more aggressive was really exciting to me, too. It brought out something that was a completely different vibe to anything I’d worked on in a really long time. It was a real challenge to try and strike the balance between that and the prettier vocal moments. That’s where someone like Will comes in – he’ll listen over a few times, get a melody going and send you off to discover for yourself. I just had so much to work with on this record.”
Along The Shadow is out now through Epitaph.