It may not seem like it, but it’s already been three years since Hammonton, New Jersey’s The Early November reunited after a four-year hiatus. In that time, the band has toured the country a number of times, signed with Rise Records, release their album In Currents, and were one of the featured bands of this passed years Skate and Surf festival. While working on new material for their next album, the band has continuing their touring and came through Long Island’s Revolution in Amityville for an intimate acoustic set. Cliché’s Heather Glock caught with lead singer Arthur “Ace” Enders to talk about the band coming back together for more than a one-off tour, holding true to fans of old, while still making new ones in the process, and more.
Cliché: With numerous bands now reuniting for one time, or short term tours, The Early November have now been reunited for over three years. What is it about the music, or the members, that made you want to recommit to performing?
Ace Enders: I think I have always been committed to music. It’s more–this is going to sound stupid–but more of the other way around. Being able to use it to support life, you know, which is something that everyone goes through is and with every artist and every band, there comes a point where you have to figure out how you can use it to live, as well as perform. I think there is a little bit of growing pains and figuring all that out, but the last couple of years have been great doing this. We’ve done a bunch of touring, but it has also been opening some doors for a bunch of other things that allows us to continue to do it.
You have been on Rise Records for almost three years. How has the label supported you in your return, both in regards to becoming reacquainted with touring, playing older material, and the process of writing new songs?
They are awesome. They are great. Anything that we could ever want, they try to do it with us, so it’s great over there!
With the perspective that you have achieved from maturing in age, do you ever worry about the content of the songs you had written when you first started, in regards to holding true to today, or do you feel that they have stood true with your transcendence into adulthood?
Well, it does hold true in a time and place that we were. I’m not going to pretend that I don’t think differently at this point and time in life. It was a very, as a band, a magical time for us… it’s not who we are right now, but it is a big part of who we are, and why we are where we are. People always ask, “Do you ever get tired of doing that stuff?” To me, if people want to hear something then I’m not tired of it.
Your friends in You Blew It! recently had their van robbed in broad daylight. Unfortunately, this is not the first occurrence this year, and band vehicles now seem to be the hot target of sticky fingers. Do you feel that with this awful event happening more and more you have to worry more about the security of your belongings now than in the past?
Actually, we had gotten our stuff stolen once before. Like everything. Our entire van actually. All of our gear, and all of our personal belongings, so we know exactly what it feels like to get stuff taken from you. I mean, it’s a bummer and it’s really tough. I mean the biggest thing you can do is to be really careful where you park, especially nowadays. There are so many bands now, and so it is a lot more common. So, know when people see a van, and guys rolling out of it, then they know there is a lot of expensive gear inside to steal, but it’s something that I wish people wouldn’t do, but what can you do?
Your solo project will also be heard tonight. Most artists who decide to write a side project wind up releasing one, maybe two records. You released five, including the newest one Enola, plus a Christmas EP back in 2010. What is it about I Can Make a Mess that keeps you going with the project?
Writing music, for me, has been the only thing that I have been good at… ever. It’s just something I like to do, whether it is self-releasing or coming out with a label, or whatever it is, I like to keep busy and growing along with it. I’m really excited to always play those songs, and every other song. For me it is all the same thing. I write every song the same exact way, whether it for I Can Make A Mess or The Early November, or under my own name. Whatever it is, it all starts at the same exact place for me, and it just gets molded into whatever. I just like to stay busy!
At Skate and Surf, you guys went on just before Saosin, and after that Midtown came on. You were one of three ‘reunion’ acts to play main stage. How did it feel to be a part of such a huge moment for the festival?
It was really cool. There were a lot of older fans there, and it is really wonderful to see people who have been around for a while. I love seeing that and it is such a comforting feeling. It was great because Midtown is a fantastic band, as well as Saosin. They are bands who have not done anything in a while, and it was exciting to be a part of that. It was just an exciting day!
Seeing you guys play, you can see in the crowd that as many “older” fans as there are, a new young fan base as well. These fans are just as passionate about your songs as those who followed you from the beginning. What is it about TEN that you feel can reach out to so many people in so many different age groups and/or stages of their lives?
I don’t know. I can say that I am very fortunate to be a part of this. I wish I knew what grabs that attention. I mean, to be able to do this for as long as we have while growing, whether to young or older people, you know, new or old fans, I am very fortunate to be a part of it in any way.
The Early November Interview: Photographed by Heather Glock