UNO’s interview with Steve Pederson, bassist of the California based rock band Evaline
Interview by Denise J. Mallabo / Special thanks to Andy Griffin
Evaline’s career hasn’t been easy. Like so many bands, they’ve gone through changes with their band lineup and management. But amidst those trials, they’ve pushed through their limits and are starting to create a name for themselves, all for the love of their music. Composed of Richard Perry on vocals, Greg Petersen on drums, Daniel Petersen on baritone guitar, Christian Lewis and Dominic DiCiano
on guitar, and Steve Pedersen on bass, they’ve recorded two EPs and a full-length album called Woven Material. They’ve toured with American rock band The Used, and British bands Placebo and Bush, and played at huge festivals, just having the time of their lives. Recently they were here in Manila as one of the performers for the MTV Exit concert, a campaign to end human exploitation and trafficking.
UNO sits down with Evaline’s Steven Pederson as he introduces us to his band and tells us how it all began.
If you can describe Evaline’s music in three words what would they be and why?
Loud. It is meant to be loud and in-yourface. Epic. It is dramatic and dynamic and ends with a bang. Rock. It has the energy of so many different rock bands.
What can you cite as the biggest change the band had gone through since you guys started in 2003? And can you say that it’s for the better?
We have gone through a couple lineup changes since we first formed. Things weren’t working out with our old drummer Steve Forrest, who now plays for Placebo, so we parted ways and got Greg Petersen on the drums. Greg is a fantastic drummer and was already a friend of ours so it worked out perfectly. Then a few years ago we added our sixth member, Daniel Petersen, to beef up our sound. This move took us to another level because Daniel is so good with anything to do with pro audio. He is also very talented at several instruments, so he is kind of our jack-of-all-trades.
Can you tell us something about the song “Beneath the Fire?” What is it about and how was it chosen to be the first single of your album Woven Material?
“Beneath The Fire” started off as an electronic, trancey type song that I had written. When we were getting ready to record the album, I put forth this song and said it would be great to turn [it] into an Evaline song. So we transcribed all the keyboard melodies to guitar, added real drums, and Perry worked out the vocals. It still has the electronic elements to it though. We didn’t plan on it being our first single though–iTunes USA fell in love with the track and wanted to feature it on the “iTunes Single of the Week.” We had no objections, because it is such great exposure for us. Plus, we thought it was pretty cool to have a seven-minute, epic song for a single!
Can you give us a brief background on the process of making your album Woven Material and how is it different from your EP Postpartum Modesty: A Portrait of Skin?
Woven Material took us about four years to write, record and release. A lot of the reason for why it took so long was because of changes going on with our record label at the time and a change in management as well. It was a difficult time for us and nearly tore us apart. Rather, we wrote songs to vent our frustrations with the state of the industry and our struggles at that time. Working with producer Dan Austin, we wanted to capture our live sound and energy as much as possible. We recorded it all over England and choose the songs that best represented our sound and life as a band since the release of our first EP, Postpartum Modesty. Woven Material is a lot different than that first EP because our sound and musical influences had matured and changed so much over that time. It is bigger, louder, and more relevant to our live sound now.
From the list of songs in the album, which are you most excited to perform live and why?
I think the general consensus of the band is that we all enjoy playing “All In My Mind.” It is a dynamic, epic song with drum and percussion break downs. Something new happens every time we play it. For example, the last time we played it, in Toronto, our singer Perry ended up climbing up the support beams of the stage, about thirty feet off the ground.
You guys started out playing at the Warped Tour and Taste of Chaos. How is it different now that you get to be invited to play in such festivals like the Hurricane Festival, and T in the Park?
Those old tours were a lot of fun for us and whipped us into touring shape. Sort of like a rock boot camp. It was a really great experience to do the European festivals this year with a whole new set of songs to play and a new album to promote. European fans are absolutely wonderful to play to.
In your bio, it says that you sound a bit like Placebo, Jane’s Addiction, etc., but who do you think you sound like? Are you guys happy with the comparison?
Yes, we get these comparisons a lot and I think it mainly has to do with the style and sound of Perry’s vocals. Musically I think people have a harder time pinning us down because our style is a mix of a lot of different bands. Some of our biggest influences are Radiohead, Mogwai, and At The Drive-In, just to name a few.
Where do you see yourselves in the upcoming months?
Sometime in the next few months we also hope to get together and start writing some new material. We plan on being very busy and hope to meet any new fans along the way. Cheers.
For more about Evaline, check out their website at http://www.evaline.co.uk/.
Article originally published in the Dec 2011 – Jan 2012 issue of UNO Magazine.
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