Bay Area Rockers EVOLUTION EDEN Interview
With the upcoming coming release of Evolution Eden's new album "Audio Therapy" set for March 20, 2020 the band took time to sit down with us and talk all things Evolution Eden.
The new album "Audio Therapy" is available HERE
HBH: Evolution Eden has been releasing music since 2006. Can you tell us a little bit about the band and how you guys started out?
EE: Brandon and I (Pap and I) were introduced by a mutual friend who was really into classic rock like Aerosmith, Van Halen, Bob Seger, etc. He got the two of us talking music, and in no time at all we started collaborating on our own original music. We shared our individual books of song ideas (themes, riffs, lyrics, melodies, etc) and then started to flesh out some proper songs with “Summer Nights” being the first song we wrote together. We ended up with about 20 and then whittled that down to the 14 or 15 that ended up on Story Road. Another friend of ours submitted our song “Walls of Wonderland” to the San Francisco radio station KGO for their “Best Music You Never Heard” contest. We won and during the subsequent interview, they asked when and where we would be playing live. It was just the two of us at that point, and we realized we needed to put a band together to play live. So we did.
HBH: With the upcoming release of "Audio Therapy" the band seems to be hitting their stride musically, tell us about the new album and what people who may not be familiar with the band can expect?
EE: Audio Therapy is our 5th album and we’re really proud of it. We believe it is easily our best work to date. As always, we wrote more songs than we could include as we try to share only our very best with the world. Sometimes that’s hard to do but we think the 10 tracks on the vinyl release are really solid as well as the 4 additional tracks that will be on the CD release. Some people ask who we sound like and we’re not sure we could pinpoint which artist or band that would be. On occasion we’ve been told that we have a sound a bit like KISS, Def Leppard or Bryan Adams. That makes sense as we are certainly influenced by those bands but we’ve got tons of other influences that get weaved into our songs--Butch Walker, Collective Soul and Bowling for Soup to name a few. The listener can expect a well thought out track order that will give you a sonic journey, no filler songs. Straight up rockers mixed with acoustic based ballads accompanied by the occasional synth has been our recipe. This most recent release really encompasses (reinforces?) that.
HBH: Having worked with some legendary music producer/engineers in the past such as Beau Hill and Andy Johns, what did the band take away from those experiences in self producing the latest release?
EE: Beau Hill flew out for a weekend to do some pre production work with us. He really taught us a lot about song structure and arrangement. He preached the 15 second rule to us...he said that the average listener will give you 15 seconds of their attention to decide if they’re going to continue to listen to your song. In other words craft your song with a memorable/catchy hook right out of the gate and you’ve got a chance that they’ll finish the song. Now we don’t always follow that rule but we do keep that in mind. Andy Johns was the “less is more” approach. He wasn’t a fan of us sending him multiple guitar tracks all layered up. He wanted to get all the sounds through the mixing process. Although we do like to layer our tracks we do keep that more stripped down approach in mind depending upon the song. Both guys had a wealth of knowledge, experience and success that has helped to shape Audio Therapy.
HBH: You’ve recently added two new members to the band bassist Mike McShane and drummer Brian Powell. What led to the change and has the dynamic in the band changed at all with the addition of Mike and Brian?
EE: After 13 years with the same 4 band members, in May of 2018 the band had decided to go our separate ways. There were tensions within the band that could not be resolved and the band had gone as far as that line up could go. Everyone is still friendly and we parted on good terms and wish those guys much success. But a few months later Pap and Brandon reconnected and began writing this current record with the intent of starting a new project. The more we wrote, it just sounded too much like Evolution Eden, which made sense because we were the songwriters in the band. So we asked the other guys for their blessing to let us continue as EE and they were happy to let us give it a go. McShane is a long time friend of the band and was really interested in joining when the opportunity arose. He brings an energy and excitement to the band that is contagious. He really knows how to play for the song, picks up the song structure quickly, and complements the drums so well. Brian is a veteran of the Bay Area scene and after playing with quite a few other drummers we knew we had the right guy. His background is more Hard Rock and Metal, so he brings a heaviness and power that was not there before. I think he gives us a much needed edge.
HBH: Recently the band released a single for the album's title song “Audio Therapy.” What was the inspiration for that track? It definitely has that old school classic rock n roll vibe to it.
EE: Music has the unique power to inspire, heal and transform us. It has played such an important part of our lives that it just made sense to write about that power. “Audio Therapy” is a pretty simple idea...when life throws something unpleasant at you, you can just sit back and spin one of your favorite tracks...that’s all the therapy we’ve ever needed.
HBH: Is there a particular track or track that you’re most proud of off the new album, one you think fans would instantly gravitate to?
Brandon Owen - vocals and lead guitar
Favorite track off the new album Audio Therapy: "Beautiful Disaster"
"This song is Rock 'n' Roll personified. From the clever tongue firmly planted in cheeck lyrics, the twisting and turning of bass and guitars intertwined in the verse, the pulsating drive of the chorus, and my favorite guitar solo, not flashy, but emotional and melodic, it's the song I look forward to playing live!"
Mike McShane - bass and backing vocals
Favorite track off the new album Audio Therapy: "This Is Your Life"
I really like the overall attitude, the positive vibe, and the meaning behind the lyrics - an in-your-face motivational reminder to work hard to do something meaningful with one's life... and of course the nasty bass line."
Mike "Pap" Pappas - vocals, electric and acoustic guitar
Favorite track off the new album Audio Therapy: "
Kiss Like Summertime"
This song has a built in familiarity right from the opening chord combined with lyrics and melodies that truly paint a vivid picture for the listener... quintessential EE written all over it."
Brian Powell - drums and backing vocals
Favorite track off the new album Audio Therapy: "I'll Never Love Again"
My favorite track is I'll Never Love Again... I am more of a Hard Rock or Metal guy outside of the band so this song rubs me the right way. I love the heavy guitar riff and the vocal melody fits perfectly!"
HBH: The new album is set to drop on March 20th, 2020. Will the band be playing any live shows leading up to the release date?
EE: We’ve got a show booked April 4th in Southern California (Agoura Hills) at the Canyon Club. We plan to put more on the calendar soon.
HBH: Who are some of your biggest influences musically?
EE: We have a pretty wide range of influences between the four of us but we all can agree on KISS as a real driving force to our interest and love of rock. Van Halen, Bryan Adams, Scorpions, Thunder, Def Leppard, AC/DC, Aerosmith, Y & T and Billy Squier have also played an influential part in our music. While our songs may not sound like some of these bands we definitely draw from their songwriting and their melodic stylings.
HBH: What can fans expect for the rest of 2020 and beyond from Evolution Eden?
EE: We’re going to continue to promote the record via videos, interviews and shows. We should have a new lyric video coming out soon to follow up Audio therapy. We’ve also got two shows currently booked at the Whiskey A Go Go in Hollywood playing along with Firehouse in August and Nelson in October but we’re looking to add some dates in the Bay Area and Sacramento area soon so stay tuned.
You can order the new album HERE