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Interview
 

Portugal. The Man - 8.28.08

Interviewed by
Portugal. The Man - 8.28.08For the record, what is your name and role in the band?

I'm zach. i play the bass. John, sing and guitar

Recently John designed a t-shirt for Circa Survive to benefit Siren
Records. How did supporting Siren Records come about?


John: All the guys in Circa, from what I understood, love this record store. Love, love. The store was out of money and Circa took it upon themselves to help save it. I honestly did the design for Circa just because it was Circa and we are all close friends. I don't know the store.


Back when you were on Fearless, Church Mouth leaked a few weeks in
advance. You sent out a bulletin stating your stance on downloading
leaks and even posted a link to where fans could download it for free.
Do you still have the same feelings now after you self-funded
everything for the new record?



John: We were always funding our records, in a roundabout way. Regardless of who pays for our albums we will always support downloading. It is offered as a preview and an understanding of what we are doing and where we are going. It is amazing how many people pass along our music and introduce new people to our band.

That all being said, there is something truly truly great about waiting for an album release and going out and buying it. It becomes a part of you and something that you have worked and waited for as well. I know and understand this much personally.

Zach: we will always support downloading. it's inevitable. we're trying to
embrace it rather than fight it. the whole industry is changing
because of the internet and its time artist and labels started working
together on solutions rather than trying to fuck each other all the
time. i feel that if someone downloads our album and likes it, they're
likely to come to shows, buy shirts, and maybe pick up a vinyl. thats
enough to keep food in our bellies and gas in our van. if you want to
help support your favorite bands, buy their shit.... if you just want
to try it out, get it online.

Since 2006, you've released a new album each year. Do you still plan
on consistently releasing music or is there going to be a break from
recording any time soon?


Zach: not likely... if anything we'd like to record more. the only thing
that stops us is touring... which we also love to do constantly.

John: It is the pace we like to keep. It is what we do and what we work at. Bands sometimes forget this.

You guys remixed a few Sound of Animals Fighting songs for their
re-release last year. Did you contribute to their new record at all?


Zach: that was johnny. that was his first attempt at remixing and i thought
it came out pretty damn good. we didn't do anything for the new
record, but i'd love to do something in the future... they're good
dudes.

What was it like working with Phil Peterson and Kirk Huffman as
apposed to Casey Bates?


Zach: it was a lot different. all of those guys are very good friends of
ours. we had a good time at Phil's. everyone was really excited from
the second we walked in the door. it kept an awesome vibe through til
the end. we worked hard right off the bat. tacking about 13 hours a
day and still writing late at night. kirk is amazing at coming up with
melodies and percussion ideas and phil is an unbelievable strings
player. we had access to so many instruments. accordions, horns,
cellos, violins. it gave us a lot of room for experimentation.

John: Casey is one of my best friends, it was more done out of the spirit of the band, we love to collaborate and work with as many different people as possible. It just made the most sense to make the album with two other great friends and two amazing musicians. We love those dudes.

What kind of sound can we expect from Censored Colors? How different
is it compared to the sound on Church Mouth?


Zach: it is quite different. aside from all the different instruments used,
our writing process changed a lot. we tried writing songs around chord
structure and progressions. church mouth was built more of riffs and
beats. censored colors is more mid tempo, solid rock songs. with a lot
of improvised horns, strings and synth. paul kolderie had a big part
in the album as well. he added a lot regarding tones and moods in the
post production.

John: Completely different albums. The chord based writing and structuring was actually something Kyle Oquin had been pushing me to do . That guy is just hilarious. He would sit me down all the time and tell me "Hey man, you gotta start writing with major scales more." So, I went out last summer and got a Beatles songbook to give me a little push in the right direction. It was settled, chords it is. It makes the most sense in any situation and it is how the world of music works. It has definitely opened up a huge world of sound to me and made it much easier to add the color and texture that is so key to this album. Thanks Kyle.

Censored Colors has quite a bit of songs on it. Are there any extras
that didn't make it on the album that will see the light of day
eventually?


John: A couple songs that may become a 7". There was a lot of chopping towards the end.

Zach: we do have a few b sides. we always do. we haven't planned anything
for them just yet, but I'm sure they will come out eventually. we feel
they are good songs, but they just didn't fit the record as much.

You recently announced a partnership with Equal Vision Records for the
new record. What was the reasoning behind this when you originally
decided to self-release it, and why choose Equal Vision?


John: We had gone into this album fully intending to self release and in the end we still are, to an extent. We didn't talk to a single label with any serious intent until after all of censored colors was completed, it just made more sense to do it this way. We worked very hard and at the end of the day we came out of the studio with a record we felt needed a little helping hand and Equal Vision just made the most sense. Shit, we have talked to just about every label we could ever want and when we sat down and started digging through what was on the table it all came back to the love. EVR has always backed us and been friends since the start of this band. They gave us exactly what we needed, a base for our label and trust in us to make the best records we can.

Are you planning on releasing any records from bands through
Approaching Airballoons in the future?


Zach: that would be awesome, but we haven't talked about that much. i
honestly don't see us having time to do that in the near future. we're
busy little bees.

John: it is more of our own free space at this point. Who knows? Future planning is not our specialty.

You have a pretty big tour schedule coming up. What is your favorite
part about being on the road?


Zach: i love everything about it. it's hard at times, but there is nothing
more i love to do than play live. i love driving through the night in
the middle of nowhere, crazy fucking truck stops, meeting new people.
it's a truly amazing experience. although I'm doing this interview in
the van and our air conditioner went out last week.... that kinda
sucks. and i do miss sleep.

John: I would love to say "The chicks maaaaaan.... the chicks." but, it is not the way it works. We are normally hanging about somewhere between Video games, Science Fiction, Some Ipod wars, Inside Jokes (completely awful inside jokes) and shit talking. If I had to choose my favorite part it would just be the amazing people we are lucky enough to meet, the places we get to see, the togetherness we get to find within each other..... I wish our families could roll with us. That is the one thing we are missing.

What can we expect from your US headlining tour in the future as far
as your set list and support goes?


Zach: as of right now, we're bringing out winter sleep to open the show,
and earl greyhound as main support. i've heard rad things about both
bands and I'm really pumped to see them. as far as our set list goes,
we'll be doing a pretty even mix of all our albums and throw in one or
two b sides. we'll play every song we know. I'm figuring an hour and a
half to two hours a night. we can't wait.

John: To plan would only set us up for lack of execution and follow through. We'll see what happens when we get there.

Are you currently working on any other projects that you'd like to talk about?


Zach: oh we've always got some shit up our sleeves. mostly videos and ep's.
we've got a lot in the works.

John: If everything works out, we will be very happy.

Any last words for the readers?


Just a huge huge thank you to your website and community for being so very supportive. The love is amazing and we definitely definitely return that love your way. So, yeah, thank you Absolutepunk, you mean the world to us and bands like us. Thank you for being there for a lot of the music that gets missed.

Oh.... and..... I read what you said about my awful artwork on that Circa shirt. haha
 
Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 18
04:08 PM on 08/28/08
#2
porttheman
SERENITY NOW!
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i love this band and the new cd is pretty dang good!!
06:06 PM on 08/28/08
#3
Un'Aria Ancora
The best happiness money can buy.
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Church mouth was is my top 5 of last year, great great record. Can't wait for this one.

Portugal:
Thanks for the rock show in KC. Sick.As.Shit.
You just don't expect bands to be better then on record these days.
06:59 PM on 08/28/08
#4
flash_gorton
Not Ever Or Anyone
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Awesome interview, I can't even begin to imagine what this band will become, I mean with their ever-changing musical direction and all, what amazing artists.
09:49 PM on 08/28/08
#5
chicametipo
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Censored Colors is fantastic.
11:41 AM on 08/29/08
#6
B-Bones
"The Christlike Christian"
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Incredible artists. One of the greatest live shows. I can't wait to see a 2 hour set from them! When will this headlining tour be going down?
12:08 PM on 08/29/08
#7
christopher™
coke classic, prescription addict
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nice interview.
hopefully those b sides come out on a 7".
12:48 PM on 08/29/08
#8
Bob Payne
www.twitter.com/VarsitySlutTeam
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Good interview, but too short! Also, I hope they break out into "One (is the loneliest number)" on their headlining tour, too.
01:55 PM on 08/29/08
#9
fromoc2dc
Here's Your Future!
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Nice interview. They put on a great show last night with Kay Kay and RX Bandits.
02:47 PM on 08/29/08
Jeannieanline
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definitely ready to see them live again
03:46 PM on 08/29/08
caress me down
Music Is My Aeroplane
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Nice interview. They put on a great show last night with Kay Kay and RX Bandits.
went to that show, it was insane. first time i ever heard of ptm
04:16 PM on 08/29/08
fromoc2dc
Here's Your Future!
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went to that show, it was insane. first time i ever heard of ptm

I was most excited about Kay Kay and His Weathered Underground going into it, but all the bands just blew me away, even the girl that sang with Matt when doors opened. The crowd was suprisingly cool too. To top it off, got to talk to the guys from Kay Kay and Rx Bandits afterwards.
04:31 PM on 08/29/08
caress me down
Music Is My Aeroplane
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I was most excited about Kay Kay and His Weathered Underground going into it, but all the bands just blew me away, even the girl that sang with Matt when doors opened. The crowd was suprisingly cool too. To top it off, got to talk to the guys from Kay Kay and Rx Bandits afterwards.
i went to the one in jersey, so the bands were different. for me it was maps & atlasses, portugal the man, and rx. i was going for rx and had never heard of the other 2, but they were all ridiculous. i talked to one guy from ptm and matt embree from rx. both veryyy chill people
11:23 PM on 08/29/08
CokeorPepsi
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Really can't say enough good things about this band. I really love how they tour relentlessly and put out an amazing album every year. I'll be honest the new album took me a few days to get into, but it is now my favorite release of the year so far. When is the headlining tour? Seeing this band play for two hours would be an unforgettable experience.
10:03 AM on 08/31/08
UndertheTELE
Just spoken of.
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A 2 hour set would be a dream come true

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