In the months since Army of Me’s “Citizen” was released, the band has enjoyed nationwide airplay of its hit single, “Going Through Changes,” has been featured on MTV, and has toured the country.
But the local rockers, whose sound would fit perfectly alongside the noises Bono and Chris Martin make, aren’t quite satisfied quite yet.
“It’s like there’s this big mountain we’re trying to climb, and when you’re far away from the mountain, it doesn’t look that big,” lead singer Vince Scheurman said. “It’s like Mount Everest. There’s ‘false summits.’ When you get to one peak, there’s always another one. We still have a ways to go.”
The band’s constant touring has kept it away from home, and Scheurman said the band’s show at the Rock & Roll Hotel Friday will be its first in its hometown in about a year, aside from a stint opening the Shamrock Festival at RFK Stadium in March 2007.
“There’s something special about playing at home. I love playing D.C.,” he said. “Being out on the road, you feel like you’re pushing against a wall and it’s not moving. It’s been tough.”
But the band has stuck together, unlike many of their local peers.
“It’s been interesting to see the scene change,” he said. “A lot of the bands we started with aren’t playing anymore.”
Scheurman said a lot of the material on Citizen comes from dealing with this adversity.
“The record comes from a time in my life where I was going through significant life changes,” he said. “It’s about life, asking bigger questions, trying to get below the surface. It’s about pain, healing, hope. It comes from love. It’s about love. Not romantic love, but a bigger concept of love.”
Scheurman said writing the album’s songs – remember that cross between U2 and Coldplay – was almost surreal.
“I don’t feel like I wrote the songs, but they came from some sort of mysterious grace,” said Schuerman. “I feel really good about them. It’s beautiful.”