Evil Maria
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Evil Maria

Los Angeles, California, United States

Los Angeles, California, United States
Rock Indie




"Evil Maria Interview - by Stacy Sardelli"

http://www.babbleandbeat.com/musician-interviews/evil-maria.html - www.babbleandbeat.com

"Evil Maria Interview - by Brian Lush"

http://www.rockwired.com/evilmaria.html - www.rockwired.com


Still working on that hot first release.



After releasing and touring behind three CDs on his Spill Records label, singer/songwriter and guitarist Evren Goknar named his rock band Evil Maria for his fourth release. Their CD, "Evil Maria" contains eleven songs about ironic observations, character profiles, and Los Angeles/Hollywood urban life. Their sound evolved into what Evren describes as neo-sixties garage pop, infusing edgy rock elements with pop and early new wave. Bands such as Elvis Costello and The Attractions, The Kinks, and The Raconteurs exist among their influences. The combination of wry lyrics, hooks and melodies, and the "dirty pop" sound of Evil Maria contributes to their unique sound.

Evil Maria morphed out of Evren and drummer Pete Finestone playing on Evren's solo tours together. Finestone, formerly of Bad Religion, played on Evren's solo CD "Boxes" as well as classic BR albums such as "Suffer" and "How Could Hell Be Any Worse". Performing with Pete in gritty dive bars and clubs along the west coast reminded Evren that a band would represent his more aggressive material best, and the concept for Evil Maria began. They enlisted bassist June Kato on bass. June infuses the music with a grind here, a cadence there, underscoring the dynamic nature of the Evil Maria sound. June's low-end melodies bring a sophistication to Maria that aesthetically suits Evren's guitar "chang" and Finestone's early punk sensibilities.

Evren's three previous albums, "Burning The Tulips" (1998), "Flux" (2001), and "Boxes" (2004), represent a progression in songwriting, vibe, and production that lead directly to the quality of the Evil Maria album. Beginning with "Flux" the recordings include the retro sounding Farfisa organ, which imparts a certain "B horror film vibe" to the songs. Finestone adds, "Evren's Turkish heritage subconsciously adds an x-factor to the sound of Evil Maria. In his penchant for minor or diminished chords, and the plaintive timbre of his voice, there exists a darkness which contrasts with the pop module of the band". June explains, "We bridge musical genres, fusing styles to discover a new sound for Evil Maria."

The songs on "Evil Maria" tackle a range of subjects including the Hollywood dream machine, illegal immigration, love lost and broken, and profiles of compelling characters. For example, "Along the Way" explores the machinations and remorse of a serial killer, "California" is a story about the hopes that drive an immigrant to risk his life, "Hand of God" examines the Hollywood myth of life transformation from ordinary to celebrity, "Kiss Your Scars" suggests that we let go of past pains and press on amidst life's constant changes.

When asked why he named the band Evil Maria, Evren says, "It is a reference to the 1927 Fritz Lang film 'Metropolis'. The heroine in the film, Maria, represents the voice of workers who toil underground, below the metropolis to keep it running for the king. As the workers become rebellious, the king conspires with a scientist to make a cyborg version of Maria to deceive the workers and thwart a revolt. I refer to the cyborg as Evil Maria. Independent musicians are like those workers, toiling to be true to one Maria (our artistic vision), while avoiding the misleading temptations of a false one."

In the course of promoting his albums, Evren has performed at SXSW, EAT'M, The Philadelphia Music Conference, and The TAXI Road Rally. He was also selected to be one of fifteen songwriters in one of ASCAP's Lester Sill Songwriting Workshops in Los Angeles. Evil Maria excitedly anticipates promoting their new album, touring, and further exposing their rock music brand to the masses.