‘Evil Maria’, the Band’s Self Titled Album, Released Through Spill Records


 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 music is best characterized 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, The Pixies, and Nirvana influence their music.  Add in his clever lyrics and strong melodies and you get “inherently catchy, consistently enjoyable and melodically proficient” songs as described by Performing Songwriter Magazine. 

Evil Maria’s sound is framed by the pumping and driving rhythm section of  Pete Finestone (Bad Religion) on drums and June Kato on bass.  The Farfisa organ adds a certain “B horror film vibe” to the album.  Finally, Evren’s vulnerable and resonant voice creates a familiar sense of empathy in the listener as he rants and croons his way through the stories and observations in the songs.

Spill Records’ fourth release, ‘Evil Maria’, is filled with brooding melodies in minor keys, and embellished with poignant vocal harmonies. The album is packed with eleven radio-ready songs containing wry observations of Los Angeles/Hollywood urban life in the new millennium.  The songs 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 is named Maria and she is 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.  To me, 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.”



EPK: www.sonicbids.com/evilmariatheband



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Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / neufutur.com since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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