Members: Jose Pasillas, DJ Kilmore, Brandon Boyd,
Ben Kenney, Mike Einziger
Incubus is an eclectic rock band, that consists of five men from Calabasas, California: Brandon Boyd (vocals and percussion - including the djembe), Mike Einziger (guitar), Ben Kenney (bass), Jose Pasillas (drums) and DJ Kilmore (turntables). Mike Einziger is considered by many to be one of the greatest guitar players of his generation, and one of the most inventive soloists around. Former members of the band include DJ Lyfe (turntables) and Alex Katunich (a.k.a. Dirk Lance) (bass). The band needed to think of a name hours before their first show. After a few failed choices, Mike looked in a thesaurus and chose "Incubus" almost at random. An incubus is a type of demon. Mike says that the name was chosen because it sounded silly; Brandon holds that it was chosen because they were teenagers and the definition had the word "sex" in it.
Jose Pasillas, Alex Katunich, Mike Einziger began jamming together while at Calabasas High School in 1990. They mostly played Metallica and Megadeth covers and were able to get a few gigs at friend's parties. They asked their friend, Brandon Boyd to join and he became the vocalist. At this time they began writing their own music. In 1991, after adopting the name Incubus, the band began playing at parties in their neighborhood. For the next few years, Incubus continued to play live and write music, which cumulated in their first demo recording released in 1994, titled Closet Cultivation. One song of interest from this demo was "Bathe In My Snot", which harnessed much of the band's newly created energy.
On January 7, 1995, the demo tape Incubus was released, featuring songs that would later appear on their first album, Fungus Amongus, and their EP, Enjoy Incubus. On November 1, 1995, Fungus Amongus was released on the band's own label,Stopuglynailfungus Music on Chillum.
Between that release and their 1997 major label debut EP, Enjoy Incubus, the band acquired DJ Lyfe, who introduced hip-hop sounds to the band's already diverse mix of music. Enjoy Incubus was released on Immortal Records on January 7 of that year, exactly two years after the band's second demo. Many songs from Fungus Amongus were rereleased on Enjoy Incubus, but were touched up.
Incubus collaborated with DJ Greyboy to produce the song "Familiar" for the Spawn movie soundtrack in 1997. S.C.I.E.N.C.E., the band's first full length major label album, was released on September 9, 1997. Singles included "Vitamin," "A Certain Shade of Green," and "New Skin."
In February 1998, DJ Lyfe was asked to leave because of trouble within the band and Chris Kilmore was brought in to fill the vacant position. The band then continued to tour, playing in Europe and America with the likes of Sugar Ray, Hoobastank, 311, Far, One Minute Silence, Cold, Limp Bizkit, (hed) p.e., Snot, Soulfly, System of a Down, Ko?n, Papa Roach, as well as playing the Warped Tour for three dates, the Ozzfest and the Family Values tour in the summer and fall of 1998. A live recording of the song "New Skin" appeared on the Family Values compilation CD.
ROAD TO STARDOM
After touring with Black Sabbath, Incubus began recording Make Yourself, which was released on October 26, 1999. The album had a slightly mellower and more mainstream sound than the S.C.I.E.N.C.E., but still was experimental and featured strong messages about society. Immediately they went out on tour again, this time with Primus. "Pardon Me" was released as a single and -- as MTV began playing the video -- the band began to gain a mainstream following. The single reached #3 on the Billboard Modern Rock chart.
"Stellar" was the second single released from Make Yourself, and the video was played on MTV and TRL. It reached #2 in the Billboard Charts. The next single, "Drive," did one better, reaching #1 on the Modern Rock chart and crossing over to pop stations.
After playing the Ozzfest tour again, a six song EP, When Incubus Attacks Volume 1, was released. In the first week of its release (August 22nd, 2000), When Incubus Attacks Volume 1 sold almost 40,000 copies, and reached number 41 on the US Billboard Album Charts. Later the DVD, When Incubus Attacks Volume 2 was also released, featuring live footage, music videos and various backstage footage.
During the year 2000, Incubus toured with Queen Adreena, 311, Deftones and Taproot and played Ozzfest again. Fungus Amongus was re-released on November 7th, 2000, as a response to demand for the independently released album.
2001 was a busy year for the band, when Incubus went on the road with Hundred Reasons in the summer and played the Area One Festival before their Make Yourself went Double Platinum, selling two million copies. The band also played in Australia and Japan, before touring with Hoobastank in the United States. The "Drive" video was nominated for an MTV Video Music Award in the category Best Group Video, but the award went to *NSYNC.
"Wish You Were Here", the first single from the group's next album, Morning View was released on August 21, 2001, and reached number two on the Alternative chart. At the end of September the video for "Wish You Were Here" was released, after being re-cut in order to make it more "viewable" in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks of September 11th. Originally the video showed the band running from a group of screaming girls, forcing them to jump off a bridge into a river. It was replaced with footage from the band in the Morning View Mansion where the album was recorded.
Morning View was released on October 23, 2001. This album was recorded in a mansion on the Pacific coast of California. The album was a much more mellow record as opposed to the hard sounds on Make Yourself and S.C.I.E.N.C.E., thus coming into criticism from veteran fans but still retained such rockers as Have You Ever and Under My Umbrella. The sound of the record is generally seen as a reflection of that environment, as opposed to the basement where S.C.I.E.N.C.E. was recorded. The house was located on a street named "Morning View"; hence the name. In interviews, the band all appeared very positive about their latest release; as Brandon Boyd puts it, "we all moved into a magnificent, Malibu mansion, set up our gear in the living room with a view of the ocean, and began creating what would be our most free-flowing work to date." The band also released a DVD after this album, featuring a live performance at the Sony Studios in New York (the set was designed to look like the Morning View Mansion), footage of the band in the mansion, a photo gallery and the cut and un-cut versions of Wish You Were Here.
The other singles from the album were "Nice To Know You", "Warning" and "Are You In" and a radio single, "Circles".
The success of Morning View and "Wish You Were Here" marked the band as a truly popular, mainstream rock band, reaching #2 in the billboards, with Morning View reaching #2 in the album charts, selling 440,000 copies in its first week. Coupled with this, the band were now selling out big arenas and became a household name in the industry.
In April 2002, the band hit the road again, this time as the headline band for Honda's Civic Tour with Hoobastank. Incubus was allowed to design a Civic given away in a drawing.
After the tour, bassist Alex Katunich(a.k.a. Dirk Lance), decided to leave the group. This new info was not released to the general public and the band took a break from Incubus to deal with the news and to take a breather from the constant pressure of writing music.
During the break, guitarist Mike Einziger set up the Time Lapse Consortium. He gathered together a group of musicians to perform a select number of shows. He wrote the music himself and it came out as a jazz/funk mix. However, despite his intention of a solo project, he ended up enlisting all the remaining members of the band, except Chris Kilmore. He also asked for help from Suzi Katayama, who had worked on Morning View, to arrange the orchestra. A bootleg was released of the show at the Roxy in Los Angeles.
Added to the line-up of the Time Lapse Consortium was Ben Kenney on the bass, from the band The Roots. The band later said this was his 'audition'. He seems to have impressed because he was announced as the replacement for newly departed bassist Alex Katunich.
In 2003, the new Incubus played at the newly-revived Lollapalooza concert. Also on the main stage were The Donnas, Jurassic 5, A Perfect Circle, Queens of the Stone Age, Audioslave, and Jane's Addiction. A live bootleg compiling songs from their performances at Lollapalooza was released to make money for the Make Yourself Foundation through their website.
The Make Yourself Foundation was started by the founding members of the band in 2003 as a non-profit organization which donates to causes the band deems worthy. Funds are gathered solely from ticket sales, merchandise, events, online auctions and album proceeds. Incubus also releases a CD series of "bootlegs" which feature recordings of live appearances and exclusive material, which directly benefit the charity. The Make Yourself Foundation does not accept cash donations from fans. Over a year after creation, the foundation has raised under $400,000, giving to organisations such as the International Red Cross, the Painted Turtle, Operation Smile and the Surfrider Foundation.
Their newest album, A Crow Left of the Murder, released in 2004 was a new turn for the band. It combined the experimental leanings of S.C.I.E.N.C.E. and Fungus Amongus with the melodic rock of Make Yourself and Morning View. The first single off of ACLOTM was "Megalomaniac", which raised controversy when it was said to be an attack on the Bush administration and was banned from daytime view on MTV, despite the band saying that it was not an attack on a particular person, rather a comment on some people's negative attitudes. The second single released was "Talk Shows on Mute", with a video that was inspired by George Orwell's 1984. A third single, "Agoraphobia", was released, but was not promoted much by the label (it never had an official radio add date), and got very little airplay as a result.
They toured worldwide in 2004 with Ben Kweller, The Vines, The Music, Hundred Reasons, Brand New and Sparta amongst others to promote their new album.
One song left off the album, the 26-minute long instrumental entitled "The Odyssey" featured on the Halo 2 soundtrack.
In November 2004 the band released a live DVD entitled Alive at Red Rocks, filmed live in Colorado during their world tour for A Crow Left of the Murder. Along with the DVD came a bonus CD featuring five tracks, including a studio version of live favourite "Pantomime", a movement from "The Odyssey" called "Follow" and B-Side "Monuments and Melodies". Two live tracks were also included.
A NEW ERA
In the spring of 2005, the band went back into the studio. Three new songs were released in late July 2005 as part of the soundtrack album to a new Sony film called Stealth starring Jamie Foxx and Jessica Biel. (The soundtrack also features the previously released "Aqueous Transmission".) The track "Make a Move", a fairly standard uptempo hard rock song, was released to radio in late May, and thus far, the song has reached #17 on the Alternative charts.
Fan reaction towards "Make a Move" has been lukewarm, but the other two new songs, "Admiration" and "Neither of Us Can See", seem to be much more well-liked. "Admiration" is a midtempo love song with a lush string section and well-layered background vocals. "Neither Of Us Can See" is another midtempo track, this one being a duet with Chrissie Hynde of The Pretenders. Both songs have a decidedly epic sound. It remains to be seen if these tracks will be indicative of how their next album sounds.
A fourth song is said to have been recorded, but there is no word on the title of the song, or if/when/how it will be released.
The band's lead singer, Brandon Boyd, has also been the subject of controversy as of late, thanks to his new deal as the poster child for The Gap. Many fans feel this contradicts lyrics Brandon has written in the past about not conforming to the norms of society. However, now that more details about the ad campaign were released, some fans have cooled down. Word has it that Brandon will be singing a cover of Elvis Costello's "Alison" in this ad, and will be accompanied by Alanis Morissette. Brandon's cover of "Alison" will be released on a Gap in-store CD - the rest of Incubus did not contribute to the song.
Incubus have re-entered the studio to begin recording new material for the fifth full-length studio album. There is word on the album yet, but it may see a release sometime in 2006.
1995 - Fungus Amongus
1996 - Enjoy Incubus
1997 - S.C.I.E.N.C.E.
1999 - Make Yourself
2000 - When Incubus Attacks Volume 1
2001 - Morning View (DVD including live performances)
2002 - Incubus Volume 2 (DVD including music videos and live performances)
2004 - A Crow Left of the Murder
2004 - Alive At Red Rocks (DVD focused on one live show in Colorado)