Eva Under Fire

“Baby, I’m about to blow/Tickin’ like a timebomb ready to explode” “Blow”

“We’re a blue-collar garage band from down river Michigan,” says Eva Marie, lead vocalist and namesake for Eva Under Fire, the five-piece southeast Detroit rock ‘n’ roll group that burst onto the scene with their debut Better Noise Records album, Love, Drugs & Misery. Their Top 10 Active Rock airplay smash, “Blow” featuring Ice Kills Nine’s Spencer Charnas, was on the original soundtrack to the cult horror smash, The Retaliators, whose opening scene featured Eva herself in serious peril.

“It’s interesting the song got picked for a horror movie because the lyrics are just kind of feisty and fun,” she said. “But once we got the treatment, it began to make more sense.”

Things have been picking up since. Pandora Radio recently named the band an “Artist to Watch” in 2023, as they look to live up to a pedigree stretches back to such Motor City metal madmen as Iggy and the Stooges, MC5, Alice Cooper’s Steve Hunter and Dick Wagner, Grand Funk Railroad, Kid Rock, The White Stripes and even Ted Nugent.

Like recent Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo (who get a lyrical nod in “Blow” as Eva wails, “Hit me with your best shot”), Eva Marie and lead guitarist Rob Lyberg are married co-founders of the group, all of whom have known each other from high school, playing together in numerous bar bands along the way. They get the name – and most of its lyrical content – from Eva’s turbulent childhood which she recalls powerfully in “Heroin(e)” on the new album: “I can’t save you (no)/I can’t change you now/Save your own skin/I’m not your heroine.”

That song was also featured on the soundtrack to Sno Babies, the Better Noise film about addiction that included contributions from labelmate Nikki Sixx, who very publicly conquered his own drug demons in the music and book of Heroin Diaries.

That backdrop forms an ironic counterpoint to Eva’s “day job” as a clinical psychotheraphist who earned a Masters degree at Michigan School of Professional Psychology just about the same time her band was scoring a recording contract from Better Noise. While helping others overcome their mental health issues, Eva works out her own cathartic therapy in songs like the percussive AC/DC blast of “Unstoppable,” the throbbingly heavy guitarwork of the break-up song, “Misery,” or the scorching power ballads, “The Strong” and “Give Me a Reason.”

“We love to play live,” says Eva. “That’s where the songs connect with the audience. People are openly crying in front of us, screaming the words back to us. It really connects, and that’s important to us.”

Combining the two sides of her persona, Eva has penned blogs about mental health and drug addiction for Loudwire.com during last year’s Mental Health Awareness Month and is active offering therapeutic services to the music community through the Sweet Relief Musician’s Fund.

Musically, Love, Drugs & Misery reflects the band’s diverse influences. Lead guitar Rob Lyberg’s early guitar influences Journey’s Neal Schon (check the band’s cover of “Separate Ways [Worlds Apart]” on last year’s Blow EP).

“The band’s ability to write solos with melodies is what interested me,” says Rob. “It’s not just about playing super-fast… it has to contribute to the song.”

Indeed, Eva Under Fire is just as comfortable using modern digital recording techniques (the electronic sheen on “Heroin(e)”) alongside classic-rock staples as the Talk Box (on their Motley Crue homage, “Another Shot Through the Heart”). They can be as heavy as the hardest metal one moment yet create indelible pop hooks and melodies the next.

Eva’s vocals are at once gruff and effortlessly wide-ranging, channeling such classic female rockers as Grace Slick, Pat Benatar and Ann Wilson, while evoking her own ‘90s influences, including Evanescence’s Amy Lee, Alicia Keys and Christina Aguilera, and even Breaking Benjamin’s Benjamin Burnley.

Showing off their range, EUF are just as likely to tackle U2’s “With or Without You” as they are the ominous rap-rock interlude in “Coming for Blood” (featuring From Ashes to New’s Matt Brandyberry) or placing vocals on the yuletide classic, “O Holy Night,” included on the score to The Retaliators arranged by Emmy-winning composers Kyle Dixon and Michael Stein, creators of the iconic Stranger Things theme.

After handing in Love, Drugs & Misery and being forced to wait out Covid, Eva Under Fire hit the road in spring of 2021, performing with Buckcherry, Skillet and Theory of a Deadman, among others, before heading out for their debut European tour in April which will see them hitting the U.K., Germany (where “Blow” was Top Three in radio airplay), Belgium, Denmark, Poland, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Austria, Hungary, Italy, France and Netherlands before they return to the U.S. for summer festival dates. Look for more covers and remixes on streaming services through the end of the year.

“We’ve always been a band that wasn’t afraid to admit we wanted commercial success,” says Eva. “Our songs are written about what we experience and feel, so we’re organic in that way, but we’re definitely not afraid of those big pop melodies and hooks.”

Eva Under Fire are about to explode.