Editor’s Note: It was a rather warm evening at Lefty’s Live Music in Des Moines, Iowa. And a band that is on the rise in the metal world, known as Invidia is a band that takes advantage of every opportunity that they can get their hands on. Invidia is composed of out of the ashes of Five Finger Death Punch, Skindred, and Evan joined the band this year after his stint with VYCES. They joined up to provide direct support for Wednesday 13 and Gabriel And The Apocalypse If there is a stage, whether there’s 10 people there or 10,000 people there, they want to play that stage. They are genuinely about making personal connections with the fans, but when they get on that stage, they turn into a very hard-hitting band that is driven with copious amounts of intensity. As of this year, Evan Seidlitz amicably left VYCES to join up with Invidia and his transition into the band has been a very smooth one. We sit down with Evan(vocalist) and Darren(drummer) to discuss the band and touring.
M.T.C.: How’s it going today?
Evan: Good, it’s pretty hot out here in Iowa.
M.T.C.: Definitely gets blazing warm in the summer here. My understanding is that you joined Invidia recently.
Evan: Yeah, about a week before the album(As The Sun Sleeps) came out.
M.T.C.: How did that come about?
Evan: Well, as you knew I was in VYCES, and when I was with them, they toured with Invidia on THE HELLRZZR Tour this past October and November, so they(Invidia) would see me play every night with VYCES, we kind of talked briefly about it during the tour and were like, “hey, man, with Travis some things came up, this tour is coming up with In This Moment, we think that you can step in and fill in for some shows, if that’s cool”, and I was like, “yeah, while were on tour with VYCES, we’ll see what happens”, and the band called me up and came at me with a logical time of thing, I didn’t have to really think too hard about it, I knew what I wanted. Before VYCES, I was the frontman of quite a few other projects in the past, for about 12 years in Los Angeles.
M.T.C.: There were about two other projects, right?
Evan: Yep, Grimace and Thrown Into Exile, Thrown Into Exile is the most well known as we played on Metal Mayhem festival back in 2013, Grimace was a shorter existence, but when they asked me to do it, I didn’t have to think too long about it, then I decided to talk with the guys in VYCES, they knew where I was at, they just wanted me to be happy.
M.T.C.: I’m thinking about the “Nocturnal” music video that you were in, this may sound ignorant of me, but were there two vocalists in VYCES at one time?
Evan: No, Dave, Russ, and Shawn all started the band before me and wrote up a couple of songs, then they started to piece the rest of the band together and recruited me for live situations. That’s when they asked me, I was just working on solo stuff and no longer was in Thrown Into Exile, I was working on a solo project with the same producer as VYCES. They were like, if you want to do this, this is what it’s going to be. I was with them for a little while and I helped build the band, build their brand, get it out there and get it known, we’re all still friends, but it was time to move on and do something new. For that video, just did the same thing, build the brand, and make it better.
Check out Evan’s appearance on vocals for “Nocturnal” by VYCES
M.T.C.: Evan brought up building the vision for VYCES and now Invidia, what does that look like in the Invidia camp?
Darren: I think it’s just being out there playing and touring as much as we can. Our record came out and we were supposed to have some tours lined up, but that fell through, so it was kind of rough not touring when the album dropped, so now it’s just getting out, meeting new fans, and playing as much as we can. We have the Metal Alliance tour coming up with Overkill and Crowbar in September, so we have an offshoot festival in August down in Texas.
Evan: That festival has Lita Ford, Buckcherry, and Drowning Pool, a bunch of bands will be playing that festival.
Darren: It’ll be good for us, we’re just trying to get out there and playing as much as we can.
M.T.C.: Are you guys avid bikers?
Evan: No, probably not a good idea for me to be on a bike! *laughs*
Darren: I wanted to buy a bike, but my wife said, “not a chance”.
Evan: Yeah, we’re out of Las Vegas, I live in Los Angeles, and I try to walk, use public transportation, Lyft, or Uber as much as I can, driving and riding sucks.
M.T.C.: Especially with everybody texting and driving nowadays.
Evan: It’s terrible, everybody is on their f-ing phone! Might as well just stop driving.
M.T.C.: If I lived in a big city, I probably would. So far, what has been your favorite moment on this tour with Wednesday 13 and Gabriel And The Apocalypse in the “Condolences Across America” tour?
Evan: Probably the first day, walking on this tour. We had two headlining shows before this and we had a week to get from Las Vegas to Texas to get on the Wednesday 13 tour, and when we walked into the venue on that day, meeting Roger, the tour manager, and meeting the rest of the guys, it felt a lot different, it felt better, from The HellRZZR Tour to the All Hail The Yeti tour that we just got off of, it gets increasingly better every time, and I think each step in the process is getting better and getting ready for the run with Overkill.
Darren: There’s been a lot of people to come out and support the band, there’s a lot of people that come out that don’t know who we are, and we get to play, and when the show is over, they’re over at our table and we’re selling a bunch of CD’s, and we’re getting people that have never heard of us before, and they’re coming up to us after our show and it’s been really good for us. The crowd interaction has been really good on this one.
M.T.C.: Speaking of the CD, “As The Sun Sleeps”, how did the writing process come about for Invidia, what does that look like?
Evan: Brian, our guitar player, got in the studio with Logan Mader, our manager and producer, who also plays in Once Human, and just started hashing out songs, Brian got a hold of Matt(bassist) and he would come in and they all started working on songs together, and they would get the rest of the band together with Marcos(guitar) and Travis(ex-singer of Invidia), and that’s how it developed. It was a really a group effort, music, vocals, everything, it’s not just one person. I wasn’t there for it, but I know enough to describe how it worked in a nutshell.
M.T.C.: You all are touring with Overkill and Crowbar in the fall? What can fans expect and what is your expectation of the tour this fall?
Darren: Probably the same thing as this one, build the brand of the band, get out there in front of more people and get our name out there, that’s what you really gotta do nowadays is tour, tour, and tour. We’re really fortunate to be on that one.
Evan: Go in there with the intentions to win over Overkill’s fans. We go in to win over Wednesday 13’s fans. I’m at the merch booth before and after our shows, and people will come up to me before our sets stating that they have never heard of us, and I tell them to come find me after the set if they like what they hear, if they don’t, then they can call me a liar. They usually come up afterwards and are buying the record. But after the set, people are buying the CD afterwards, so that’s telling me they’re liking it. We went from an All Hail The Yeti tour, to Wednesday 13 to Overkill. It’s also showing that we can fit into any genre, we can fit with anybody.
M.T.C.: What is the most embarrassing moment on this tour or in your career?
Darren: I never really had any embarrassing moments, every now and then a drumstick will go flying, so that’s never fun. But as far as really embarrassing, nothing for me, knock on wood. But there was a time when I was a kid, I was playing drums at my local church, and I sat down, and the stool gave way and I fell backwards and knocked a bunch of fake trees down, that was pretty embarrassing.
Evan: I don’t really have embarrassing, but I have epic moments, the Mayhem tour with Thrown Into Exile in 2013 was quite a run going across the country and meeting a lot of people, there was quite a few things that happened on that tour, we would play in desert country with pyrotechnics on stage, and we had to sign waivers saying that if something happened we wouldn’t sue anybody.
M.T.C.: I love the music video to “Feed The Fire”, it has almost 100,000 views on YouTube so congratulations on that, I know that I might be asking the wrong members, but what is the interpretation of the song and the concepts behind the music video. I like the dark masquerade concept behind it.
Darren: “Feed The Fire” is essentially talking about drug use, but that song can apply to anything, a lot of people are going to take from the video and think it might be about a girlfriend or an ex-girlfriend or something, but it can be anything when it comes to addiction, whether its drugs or relationships, and you can apply the lyrics to what you’re going through, but I know that was a wide spectrum of what the meaning of the song is.
Evan: It does have to do with addiction, and obviously when you watch the video, it might lead you to believe that based on what’s going on, it talks about drug use, but Darren was right when he said that it really does apply to anything. But people are relating to it, people come up to us after shows, and just say, “those lyrics I really found meaning in those lyrics”, and I tell them, “I didn’t write the song, I just sing it every night”, but it’s awesome because somebody in the audience is taking away something from it. We all feed the fire to some degree. We’ve all done some things that kind of do that in our lives.
“Feed The Fire” by Invidia
M.T.C: The year is 2020, I have a crystal ball, where do you see Invidia?
Evan: International touring, headlining arenas, playing every major festival across the country and around the world.
Darren: I think that every band out there that’s doing this, their main goal is to make it to the top, whatever that is.
Evan: What he said and what I said, touring consistently, playing major festivals, and doing that.
M.T.C.: You were in a band called Six Ounce Gloves and now you’re drumming for Invidia, what have you learned and what advice would you give to a local drummer that’s starting out?
Darren: When I write or when I play live, just serve the song. As a drummer, it’s easy to take over and overplay. That’s one thing that I’ve learned is to write and play to the music. Playing wise, just play the song, also just grow up on the road. When I was in that band, I was in my 20’s, now I’m in my 30’s and I got married and I have kids, you learn how to adapt to a lot of people’s lifestyles and behaviors on the road. You learn how to grow as a band and as a man. You just gotta learn to grow up a little bit.
M.T.C.: Have you brought your family out on tour?
Darren: I haven’t yet. My wife has come to a couple of shows that are local, but as far as bringing her out here on a plane or anything, I haven’t yet.
M.T.C.: What have you learned as a vocalist from the days of Grimace to Thrown Into Exile to VYCES to now as the vocalist for Invidia?
Evan: Confidence, not getting butterflies before a show, but just getting anxious to go out there and kill it, just turning it on the moment that we go on stage and turning it off when you walk off the stage. It’s important to turn it off when not on stage, one to relax and two people will think that you’re just an asshole otherwise, it’s one of those things that came with time, being able to turn it on and off. Just being honest with yourself at all times, just to be civil, just be cool to everyone and I always say when I’m up there, it can be a little intimidating, to come and hang out at the merch booth and speak to fans after the show, and show them the appreciation that I have for them that they’re there and smile at them. It’s okay to smile at them, it’s f-ing metal to smile, I think people are taken aback by it, I’m a different person on stage as opposed to off stage.
M.T.C.: I’m going to give you guys the floor to talk about “As The Sun Sleeps”, why people should pick it up if they haven’t done so and what fans should expect from it?
Darren: The cool thing about the record is that not every song sounds the same, each one is different, so there’s something in there for everybody, there’s a song that is a little rap-rock, there’s a song in there that’s heavy and heavy with riffs, there’s a song that chicks can dance to and move to, it’s all kind of groove oriented, there’s something in there that’s for everybody, so if you haven’t picked up the record, don’t listen to one song and if that doesn’t get your appetite, go to the next song. Just go listen to it.
Evan: It’s a heavy ass record, when they said that they wanted me to do it, I was stoked because I’ve worked with Logan before in a past band, and I knew that the songs would be solid, and multiple people worked on it, it didn’t come out of one person’s head, those are the best songs too, when multiple people have had their hand in the pocket of it. Like Darren said, every song is different and it’s cool, it’s not just one-dimensional, it gets you up and down. There’s a song in there called “The Other Side” and Aaron Nordstrom of Gemini Syndrome does guest vocals on it. He’s a cool guy and a great friend of the band, he sang on the song, and we played in Las Vegas with All Hail The Yeti at Adrenaline and he came up and performed that song with us. Hopefully we can do that again in the future on a festival or in the same area.
“The Other Side” by Invidia featuring Aaron Nordstrom of Gemini Syndrome
M.T.C.: What was the best thing about collaborating with Aaron?
Evan: Aaron is just a writing machine. He is so spot on in the studio, all of his melodies with Gemini Syndrome. He is a big part of the writing machine for them, he’s definitely the man behind the curtain when it comes to that stuff.
Darren: Aaron came up with the chorus in that song in about five to ten minutes.
Evan: He came up with the idea when we walked into the studio. He pulled out his phone and he had a little piano on his phone, and found the notes and the melody, and he said, “okay, let’s do it”, and he f-ing nailed it! Check out his acoustic stuff, there’s acoustic stuff on him doing songs in Gemini Syndrome, where they did three or four songs and Aaron is playing piano for all of them, it’s just awesome, definitely check it out. Anytime I get to work with Aaron, whether it be playing shows with him or singing with him or in the studio, it’s great because I really look up to him and what he does as far as a singer and as a melody writer. When he first came out, I would hear Maynard(Tool), Pink Floyd, and all of these voices, now I hear more Aaron and less Maynard.
M.T.C.: Where can we find the band?
Evan: Pick up our album at Amazon and when we’re coming to your town check the websites to come see us.
M.T.C.: Thanks so much for the time!
Darren: Thank you!
Evan: Our pleasure, thank you!
Check out Invidia opening up for Overkill and Crowbar on the Metal Alliance tour. Black Fast will also be providing support. Here are the tour dates listed below:
Thursday, September 8th- The Forge in Joliet, Illinois
Saturday, September 10th- The Crofoot Ballroom in Pontiac, Michigan
Sunday, September 11th- Diesel in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Monday, September 12th- The German House Theater in Rochester, New York
Tuesday, September 13th- Irving Plaza in New York, New York
Wednesday, September 14th- The Canal Club in Richmond, Virginia
Friday, September 15th- TBA
Saturday, September 16th- Culture Room in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
Sunday, September 17th- The State Theatre in St. Petersburg, Florida
Tuesday, September 19th- Come And Take It Live in Austin, Texas
Wednesday, September 20th- Gas Monkey Bar & Grill in Dallas, Texas
Friday, September 22nd- Club Reb in Mesa, Arizona
Saturday, September 23rd- The Glass House in Pomona, California
Sunday, September 24th- The Brooklyn Bowl in Las Vegas, Nevada
Monday, September 25th- The Grand at The Complex in Salt Lake City, Utah
Tuesday, September 26th- The Summit Music Hall in Denver, Colorado
Thursday, September 28th- Spicoli’s Rockade in Waterloo, Iowa
Friday, September 29th- Oddbody’s Music Room in Dayton, Ohio
Saturday, September 30th- One Center Square in Easton, Pennsylvania