A PERFECT CIRCLE's Billy Howerdel has once again defended the band's strict no-cell-phone policy at all concerts, saying that it's "rude" for anyone to be "sticking your phone up in front of the face of the person behind you."
The guitarist's latest comments come a month after it was reported that more than 60 concertgoers were ejected from an APC show for taking photos in violation of the band's stated policy.
During an appearance on episode 37 of the "DOMKcast", Howerdel admitted that he is "as guilty as anyone else" of being addicted to his smartphone, but he added that "acknowledgement is the first step to recovery." As for A PERFECT CIRCLE's decision to disallow phones, cameras and all other potential forms of recording, Billy said: "There's many reasons why — I think everyone can figure it out — why we would have that kind of policy. I mean, I get why you wanna take a memento of the moment. I've done it myself. If I go to a show and they ask for… I've gone to plays. I don't know if guys have gone to a play. You never take out your phone, take a video or take a picture in a play; you're gonna get booted. Why is that any different at a rock show? And why is it any different to not be rude sticking your phone up in front of the face of the person behind you. And then, at the other side of it, we would like you to be with us, present. We're with you, present — full-focused, wholeheartedly. For that one moment in time — 90 minutes or 100 minutes — we're giving every… every calorie available to us is spent to be together, so we ask you to join us there."
Howerdel went on to say that he has also shot videos of performances in the past. "Like, say, my wife asked me to take a video of a concert that she couldn't join me at," he said. "You do, and then you send it, and it's, like, when do you ever look at it? If you ever look at it, you probably won't even finish looking at it. What's it gonna do? I don't know."
A PERFECT CIRCLE frontman Maynard James Keenan has also enacted a strict ban on photos with his other groups, TOOL and PUSCIFER, but it got renewed scrutiny after the ejections that took place at A PERFECT CIRCLE's show on November 4 in Reading, Pennsylvania.
David Farrar, the general manager of the Santander Arena & Performing Arts Center where the band performed, said on Instagram after a fan revealed he had snapped some photos: "We tossed over 60 people last night for taking pics." He later added, "This was 110 percent the band's policy and has been for Tool, APC, and Puscifer… it's not a new policy."
Stops on the current APC tour have featured printed warning signs posted around the venue, security guards announcing the policy and a video message displayed on the venue's video screens.
A PERFECT CIRCLE has been playing several new tracks on the road and recently issued a single called "The Doomed". A new studio album is expected out in early 2018.