POP EVIL is the bridge between life-affirming hard rock hit-making and the burgeoning new frontier of genre-bending postmodern playlists. A crowd-pleasing band unafraid to embrace the heaviest and most melodic ends of the spectrum, with a seemingly endless stream of No. 1 hitsveering between fist-pumping anthems and timeless power ballads. POP EVIL delivers theirmost ambitious rebirth yet with a jaw-dropping sixth album.
“Let the Chaos Reign” and “Work” arrive as a twin assault of invigorating ready-made hits for
2020, from an album filled to the brim with a dozen tracks each worthy of a dedicated spotlight.“Let the Chaos Reign” is the heaviest single the band has ever dropped, a rousing fight song ofself-determination and rising to meet any challenge with courage and strength. By contrast,“Work” puts its heavy guitars atop grooving rhythmic punch and EDM flourishes, as it championsthe working-class heroes struggling to persevere across all industries today.
“We won’t bore people with the same song over and over,” assures charismatic frontman and
bandleader Leigh Kakaty, who co-founded the band in Michigan. “When you come to our live
show, we feel like there should be an ebb and flow, peaks and valleys, that are similar to real
life. Sometimes you’re up, sometimes you’re down. We like to take people on a journey when
they listen to our music or come to see us live.”
Pop Evil has been a staple at major festivals and in theaters and clubs for nearly two decades,despite the group’s relative youth. As they’ve ruled the roost with No. 1 Billboard Rock singleslike “Trenches”, “Deal with the Devil”, “Torn to Pieces”, “Footsteps”, and “Waking Lions”, they’vetaken their inspired message to the people, on tours with modern rock titans and veteran actsalike.
One listen to any of the songs from the impressive body of work laid down by the band onLipstick on the Mirror (2008), War of Angels (2011), Onyx (2013), Up (2015), and the self-titledsmash Pop Evil (2018) confirms exactly how Pop Evil built such a diverse fanbase.
On their go-for-broke sixth album, the group doubles down on the yin-and-yang at the heart oftheir sound. There’s no other band that bounces between a song like “Waking Lions” and “ACrime to Remember” or “100 in a 55” so effectively and with such overwhelming success.
How are Kakaty, longtime guitarists Dave Grahs and Nick Fuelling, and powerhouse drummer
Hayley Cramer able to flip the spectrum so seamlessly? “If my voice sounds good on it, the
hook is catchy and memorable with a single listen, and it will go over well live, we’re not afraid todraw from any genre that we see fit for inspiration,” says Leigh.
Even for a Pop Evil record, that contrast and fearless genre-defying cross-cultural pollination
have never been stronger than on album number six. The preproduction process yielded closeto 30 songs, whittled down to the most potent 12 that represent everything Pop Evil is about.
Songs like “Inferno”, “Breathe Again”, and “Survivor” sound equally destined to take their placein the pantheon of Pop Evil signature songs that mean so much to devoted fans and casuallisteners alike. Each is just as poised to conquer new genre formats.
No. 1 smash “Waking Lions” was designed “to remind our fanbase that we’re not afraid to turn
up the guitars. Just because we’re Pop Evil, don’t forget about that ‘evil’ element.” The new LPbuilds on the foundation laid by that 2018 album specifically, springboarding with melodic heftand hook-filled heaviness blending hard rock, alternative, and pop with punch.
The band bunkered down in Los Angeles in the winter of 2019 to put the finishing touches on
the new record, working with new creative teams of producers and collaborators, each enlistedto emphasize the uniquely varied aspects of the band’s sound. “We worked with multipleproducers that fit each song’s dynamic,” the band’s hardworking singer explains.
Collectively, Pop Evil’s previous five albums account for over a million copies in worldwide salesand over 600 million streams.. Lipstick on the Mirror found its way to listeners via a major labelre-release, despite the business trouble that resulted in the band tearing up their major labelcontract on stage, in what Spin Magazine called one of the Ten Best Moments of Rock on theRange. War of Angels brought Pop Evil to a worldwide audience.
Up debuted at No. 25 on the Billboard 200 and produced no less than three Top 5 Mainstream
Rock singles: “Ways to Get High”, “Take it All”, and “Footsteps”, which went to No. 1. This was
on the heels of the three No. 1 Rock singles from Onyx. Pop Evil debuted at No. 5 on the US
Top Rock Albums chart. “Be Legendary” was one of the Top 10 most played songs of 2019.
Pop Evil combines the bigger than life bombast of Mötley Crüe or KISS with the earnest warmth
of Pearl Jam, mining the same depths of creativity and emotion found within the cosmic rifffoundation of legendary active rock, hard rock, and modern rock acts like Soundgarden andAlice In Chains. The Pop Evil faithful are a broad and dedicated group of fans around the world,people whose support was earned, one by one, show by show.
This is a band that unapologetically flies the flag for their chosen form of creativity. Rock n’ rollmusic is as American as apple pie. It’s particularly important in the Midwest, where Pop Evil wasborn. Fans who are living paycheck to paycheck, struggling to support families with a 9 to 5 gig,rely on the music made by bands like Pop Evil to help them endure the daily grind.
The signature Pop Evil elements of the past are found in the music they make today, amplified
and sharpened like never before. The utmost respect is paid to the fans; part of that respect is inmaking sure to never simply repeat what’s come before. The “Evil” will move the crowd. ThePop embodies groove, vibe, and atmosphere, extending a warm welcome to all comers.
“We’ve got loud and heavy guitars while staying true to the groove we’ve had with songs like
‘Take it All’ and ‘Footsteps’. We have that ‘Pop’ and that ‘Evil’ just as we’ve always done. And
with this record, we’ve taken another big step into our own definitive sound and identity.”
“That’s our thing,” Kakaty declares. “People know they’re going to get that Pop Evil.”
***********************************************. Since 2008, The Word Alive have steadily maintained a coursetowards the forefront of alternative heavy music and have continued their upwardtrajectory ever since. The Phoenix-based quartet — Telle Smith [vocals], Zack Hansen[guitars], Tony Pizzuti [guitars], Matt Horn [drums] toss and turn between visceral powerand entrancing emotionality encased in swathes of otherworldly electronics. It’s a
singular sound that has naturally evolved since their debut record, Deceiver, and
continued through their most recently release of Violent Noise. They’ve earned acclaim
from the likes of AlternativePress, Revolver, Guitar World, and Modern Drummer and
supported I Prevail, Killswitch Engage, A Day To Remember, Motionless In White, among others, and are known for their ability to ignite crowds across the globe. 2018’s Violent Noise represents the culmination of a decade and the unbreakable bond shared by the band and their fans. Telle, Zack, and Tony. Now, over
11 years after forming they continue to show they haven’t lost their spirit, as they’ve
celebrated “10 Years Of The Word Alive” across America, Europe and the UK in 2019.
“This band is so much bigger than ourselves. That’s the giant mission statement of AVOID
– to remind people that life is fun and you’re going to be okay. It’s not about making
decisions to make a buck. It’s making the decision to not give a fuck. We’re going to take
over the world, all of us – and have fucking fun doing it.” – Benny Scholl
Engaging, edgy, erratic, irreverent, wild, vibrant, fun… There’s certainly no shortage of
adjectives to describe AVOID and their quest to fuel that feeling of being a part of
Evoking a nostalgia for the kind of music that seeps into your soul, the Seattle five piece
channel the musical legacy synonymous with their hometown while blissfully genre
hopping to create something entirely new. Good times with a message of inclusivity, with
a drive to bring passion, innovation and provocation back to heavy music and pull in the
community around it, AVOID crackle with the energy of a young act ready to take the
world by storm.
Carving his own path hustling promoting shows and managing bands, the band’s
inimitable future frontman Benny Scholl knew early on the dedication it would take to be
successful in the music business. Meeting impressive guitarist Nick Olson, he turned his
hand to playing music, deciding he would be unlike any other frontman he had seen, and
on enlisting Chris Echols (guitar), Luke Ryder (bass), Paul Jaton (drums) some of the top
talent in the local scene became AVOID, releasing their debut album Alone in 2018.
While the world fell silent in 2020, the band seized the moment to make noise with the
release of their attention-grabbing EP The Burner – and it got LOUD. Securing a
sponsorship with NASCAR which turned their passion into promotion, they had their
music and band branded vehicle in the official video game. Singer Benny Scholl went
viral with his accidentally acapella rendition of the National Anthem at the NASCAR
Vegas race, endearing himself to sports commentator Jim Rome who ran with coverage
of the event for weeks. They also forged a long term partnership with SiriusXM, taking
over the airwaves on Octane and Liquid Metal with ambassador single “Song About
James”, which incorporated their lyrical muse James “Jeopardy James” Holtzhauer in its
With new tracks “My World”, “COWABUNGA” and “Split (Kill It)” setting the tone for a new
era for the band, and their live show reputation building more buzz daily, AVOID are ready
to spread their brand of infectious hedonism that injects some magic into the mundane.
Bringing twists on the art, and the media and methods of the 90s/00s into the modern day,
this is the something new that we have all been craving.
This is the start of something important, something defining – and AVOID are
bringing everyone along for the ride. Hold on tight, it’s about to get weird..