For the record, Evan’s Dilemma, the popular Greenville alt-pop band that first formed in the 1990’s, never actually broke up. They just tend to take breaks; really, really long breaks.
For example, the break between the band’s initial five or six year run in the Upstate and their reformation in the mid-2000s was about a decade. But there was a good reason for that: Their side-band was doing better than their day job.
“We used to play a lot in Greenville, and then we made our way to Nashville,” says singer/guitarist Joel McCreight, who forms the nucleus of the band with drummer Kevin Heuer. “We courted some labels and had some production deals, and then a side-project that all the members of Evan’s Dilemma also played in called My Friend Stephanie ended up with a record deal. So My Friend Stephanie put out three records back in the ‘90s, and Evan’s Dilemma went on hiatus.”
Then McCreight left THAT band to work in the Christian rock genre with the Grammy-award-nominated band Geoff Moore & The Distance and singer/songwriter Jennifer Knapp, while Heuer found success with the indie-rock band Vigilantes Of Love.
By the mid-2000s, though the duo was back in Greenville and looking to play together again, so they reformed and recorded Evan’s Dilemma’s first official album, 2006’s Shine Baby Shine. But that was the last anyone heard from the band for another five years.
“In late 2010 we played some regional shows, and then we took another break, because we were raising kids and doing different things,” McCreight says. “But we always had the intention of doing it again. We never actually said, ‘We quit.’”
Evan’s Dilemma regrouped in 2016 with guitarist Jay Scott and bassist/keyboard player Matthew McCreight (Joel’s son) to record another album, which ended up taking two years to make because the band wanted to record it themselves in McCreight’s home studio.
“The main goal I had was that the album be just as good or better than what we recorded back in 2006,” McCreight says. “But we didn’t go spend $10 or $15,000 to make it, I created a studio at my house. I wanted it to sound better than the work of the Grammy-award winning engineer who recorded our last album, so that’s why it took two years.”
The resulting album, Under The Sun, is one that longtime fans of Evan’s Dilemma will be able to instantly identify as their sound. The album’s eleven tracks are packed with the cranked-up power-pop guitars, driving rhythms and anthemic choruses that have long been the band’s trademarks.
They’ll be showcasing those songs at The Bohemian Café on Saturday, playing a free show along with veteran Upstate musicians Niel Brooks and J. Michael King, both of whom have new albums out themselves.
“We’ve been talking about this show for a long time,” McCreight says, “and the idea that we bounced around was to celebrate a couple of other local artists who have something new out and make an event of it.”
And if you’re hoping for more music, don’t worry. This time around, Evan’s Dilemma doesn’t plan on a 5-to-10-year break.
“There’s not going to be a huge pause this time,” McCreight says with a laugh. “We’ll probably have another album out within the next year or two.”
What: Evan’s Dilemma, w/ J. Michael King and Niel Brooks
Where: The Bohemian Café, 2-B W. Stone Ave., Greenville
When: Saturday, Dec. 8th, 3 p.m.
Tickets: Show is free