The caution:thieves frontman (and Mixdown editor) shares his thoughts on Circa Survive’s latest LP, ‘The Amulet’. Take a look:
It’s always – always – an exciting time when a new Circa Survive record is announced. The band has a great track record with consistently great releases, and I’m always eager to hear where their subtle evolution of sounds will take them next. The real cherry on top is always the excitement that comes with the unveiling of their album artwork, once again provided on ‘The Amulet‘ by long-time collaborator Esao Andrews, who always seems to nail the theme and tone of the music within his beautifully constructed art-pieces.
‘The Amulet’ is Circa Survive’s sixth full-length record, their third working with producer Will Yip (Balance and Composure, Title Fight, Turnover, too many other bands to mention) and their first release under the Hopeless Records roof. Right from the get-go, it’s clear that the record is going to be an incredibly captivating, intelligent, and mesmerising listen. The lush volume swells from opener ‘Lustration’ set the tone for an expansive sonic landscape, the perfect platform for Anthony Green’s soothing vocal melodies to stretch out from.
‘The Amulet’ has many dynamic ups and downs. Songs like ‘Never Tell A Soul’, ‘Stay’ and ‘Rites of Investiture’ have so much energy and urgency to their sound, whereas ‘Flesh and Bone’, ‘Premonition of the Hex and ‘The Amulet’ are far more vulnerable and delicate pieces. The juxtaposition of these two sides makes for an incredibly dynamic listen, a rollercoaster of emotions if you will. Even without reading too much into the lyrical content, Green’s words are so easy to connect and resonate with. Such is the benefit of a vocalist being so vulnerable and cathartic in their delivery and approach while also sounding so easily relatable.
With Green being such a captivating vocalist and frontman, it’s often overlooked just how incredible the other musicians are in Circa Survive. The interloping of complex melodies and guitar lines throughout the record seem so effortless and lush, even without the listener having to dig deep into the depth of the mix for all of the varying intricacies. Yet the most impressive part of it all is how the band breezes through odd time sections with ease, making the weirdest of cadences seem so relaxed and normal sounding. Stemming from that, huge credit needs to go to Will Yip for his lush production and solid mix duty here, ensuring that nothing is overpowering or too saturated.
Six albums in, you’d think that a band would start to run up against their creative walls and venture far and wide for something completely new – not Circa Survive. ‘The Amulet’ is a very welcome addition to an already stellar catalogue, and one can only imagine the wonderful immensity that will come alive once these songs are performed in a live setting.
- – Nicholas Simonsen