Michael Andrews was one of the first artists signed to Everloving Records. Besides his scores for Donnie Darko and Me and You and Everyone We Know, he has released two solo albums (Elgin Park and Spilling a Rainbow) and produced the debut album by Canadian band Metric. Here, Michael covers his favorite song from that album Old World Underground, Where Are You Now? “Calculation Theme” a hauntingly prophetic post-love song. The track is of the forthcoming Lp Everloving vs Evil, available January 14, 2022 via Everloving Records.
Through their 20 years, the Southern California label has conjured the upstart, DIY ethos that makes the West Coast into an eruption of creativity: skateboarding and surfing, guitar rockers, banjo pluckers and the bleeding edge of art. From that beginning of thinking locally, Everloving grew to act globally, bolstering expectation-obliterating sounds stretching from Kinshasa, Congo to Shinjuku, Tokyo.
The unifying thread? Iconoclasts and underdogs, community and creativity, and crucial moments of music that are forever burned to memory. There was Inara George teaming up with the legendary producer and Brian Wilson collaborator Van Dyke Parks, bringing a rapturous 28-piece orchestra together for her album, “An Invitation.” Peripatetic Tokyo drifter Cornelius performing in the hallowed spaces of Los Angeles’ iconic silver flame, the Walt Disney Concert Hall. Everloving also unleashed polyglot popstar Adanowsky — son of psychedelic director Alejandro Jodorowsky — to light up dance floors and they cat-herded the Growlers who preached ghoul gospel from their Christian Youth Choir bus. If you’ve seen teenagers wearing puka shells and Rainbow sandals and humming Jack Johnson’s tune “Flake” in Minnesota, Everloving was there. If you’ve seen a lonesome piano player crooning a moody version of “Mad World,” that’s Everloving too.
“We take the long view of building something for forever,” Andy says. “Regardless of how the game changes on us, it still comes down to making more than a momentary connection between the musician and the fan.”
Andy and JP met in the early 90s when JP brought an unknown, skateboarding slide guitarist from Claremont to Virgin to meet the label’s A&R guys. JP found Andy perched in a small office with a pack of Winstons on his desk. JP had a tattoo of Winstons on his wrist. They knew they were onto something. “Andy was the only A&R guy who didn’t seem gross,” JP laughs. So Andy snatched up JP’s young, no-name artist: Ben Harper.
JP produced Harper’s debut album, and became his manager. Harper went on to win some Grammys and perfect his Tre Flip. Andy’s cred continued when he brought Elliott Smith’s early Heatmiser project to Virgin, sneaking the nascent indie rockers onto the major label. (Andy says Smith’s basketball skills were also largely unappreciated). When the late 90s British invasion of the Spice Girls killed the major label’s appetite for homegrown rock, Andy parted ways with Virgin, teamed up with JP, and launched Everloving’s prototype: Enjoy Records.
Originally from France, JPs family moved around the world, and so he lived a good part of his youth in South East Asia and Japan during the Vietnam War. There his ears were tuned to American Military Radio, his fingers flipped vinyl in Japan’s record stores, and he skated the streets of Tokyo and surfed the beaches of Kamakura. From the outside, he absorbed American rock and counterculture. “I always had a historical perspective, and with music, I had an idea what we should do if we wanted what we did to transcend time,” JP says. Across the globe, on the Westside of Los Angeles, Factor was subsumed in SoCal culture, skateboarding the city, rolling ramps and bombing hills with Danny and Ronny Hilton, and watching Tony Alva shred empty swimming pools. “The ethos of skating was the heroic outlaw, and I think that was always attractive to me,” Andy says. So he and JP brought that world-spanning sound and rebel spirit with them to their own label.
With Enjoy, which later morphed into Everloving, they released Jack Johnson’s “Brushfire Fairytales,” the Hawaiian surfer and filmmaker’s debut album whose anti-anthems populated dorm rooms and indie films, at first wherever waves broke, and then everywhere else. Everloving then released the soundtrack to the now-cult classic “Donnie Darko” — perhaps the first onscreen image of a hoodie-wearing, fixie-bike-riding pre-emo guy — and made Michael Andrews and Gary Jules’ moody cover of “Mad World” eclipse Tears for Fears’ original in the collective consciousness. The first Everloving albums featured the swaying debuts of Inara George and the throbbing of Metric’s album “Old World Underground, Where Are You Now?”
It’s all catalogued on “Everloving Vs. Evil,” a spiderweb of an album featuring members of the Everloving musical family, where each artist covers another song on the label. Guy Blakeslee takes on “Mad World,” therefore covering a cover. “ Congolese party-starters Jupiter & Okwess take on Jack Johnson’s “Sexi Plexi,” weaving the song’s guitar work with musical DNA of Kinshasa grooves. French rockabilly gardener Don Cavalli turns Adanowsky’s funky number “Dancing to the Radio” into a downhome, dust-kicking stomp.
“All the friendships and all that shit are great, but what we love are songs, we love music,” JP says. “We’re eclectic and we’re fucked. And in the end, we believe that music and songs in particular are a kind of spell musicians create, a way to put their sonic graffiti on the walls of life. And Everloving is here to help channel it.”
Everloving vs Evil
1. Michael Andrews – Calculation Theme
2. Adam Topol – Too Early
3. Don Cavalli – Dancing To The Radio
4. Adan Jodorowsky & Xavi Polycarpe – You’re Gonna Miss Me
5. Jupiter & Okwess – Sexy Plexi
6. Guy Blakeslee – Mad World
7. The Jack Moves – Vitamin A
8. Piers Faccini – Smile On
9. Soft Palms – Each Wave That Breaks
10. Four AM – Take Good Care Of Yourself
11. Dana Buoy – Amor Sin Fin
12. Inara George – See Me Plain
Pre-order Everloving vs Evil HERE