Philadelphia has become a breeding ground for hot new bands and Civil Youth is no exception to that. This heavy electric band manages to create artist pieces appropriate for both kicking back and partying. Recently I spoke with vocalist Micheal Kepko about their upcoming record Conversations, available May 19th, along with hitting up a few other topics.
LJ DeWitt: Please introduce yourselves, include roles in the band, and to keep this part from getting boring, include something random about yourselves.
Mike: Hey I’m Mike and I sing for Civil Youth. Next to me is Evan, our drummer and Dan who plays the guitar. Dan loves avocados, Evan loves guacamole, and I am good at making some dope avocado pesto.
LJ: The Philly scene is easily one of my favorites, but I’d like to know, how do you guys feel about it? What’s your favorite hometown venue to play? Mike: Philly is loaded with venues, which is really convenient for all level of bands. You have small 50 cap rooms all the way to 2,500 cap rooms and arenas. We’re about to play the TLA in May and we definitely think it’s the best spot to play and we’re stoked about it!
The genre variation is so wide too. We’re pretty lucky to live here.
LJ: Do you have any bands you like to play/party with a lot? Mike: Easily John Cena in his rapping career days, as well as Philly’s own Leo Moon. Both incredibly talented.
LJ: Throughout all the places you’ve played, has there ever been a city or situation where you genuinely felt you’d die? Mike: No, but we thought we would kill some people in Sacramento… not mentioning names but let’s just say they left us no choice.
LJ: Have you ever ‘lost’; a band member before a show? If so, where was he to be found? Mike: Probably Dan at some point cause he always made friends with the locals.
LJ: Who’s the troublemaker of the band? What’s the worst trouble he’s ever gotten himself or anyone in the band in? Mike: There was this one time in CO where Mike and Dan almost got arrested for trespassing on federal grounds, but we talked our way out of it.
LJ: Three albums you’d want to be buried with? Mike: The White Album, 2112, and Get Rich or Die Trying
LJ: In May, you’ll be releasing your third album Conversations. Whether it be from emotional struggle, writers block, or what have you, what was the most difficult song to write on the record? Mike: “Part of Me” and “Let You In” just because they were one song at first, and we decided to make them 2 and they became their own thing once we did that. Good call on Evan’s part.
LJ: Which song would you say you’re the most emotionally invested in and why? Mike: “Just Set Fire” because it was a literal experience I had one night on tour. Saw some stuff I’ll never forget.
LJ: Will you be releasing any music videos off of this album? If so, are you allowed to say which songs? Mike: We’ve already released videos for “Belief” and “Dark Debts,” and in April we’ll be putting out another one for “Between Me & You”! Super excited for the 3rd single. Best video we have out yet! LJ: Finally, is there any last statements, random facts, or words of wisdom you’d like to leave with your fans? Mike: Get Rich or Die Trying.
e. Rachel Rosell