IN the Spotlight: A Look at Eyebawl

Left to right: Brian Bruce, Erin Silva, Tyler Yoder. Photo by Danielle Johnson

Erin Silva talks new music release, her love of house plants, and the therapeutic effects of rock and roll

If you like the poppy hits of today’s chart toppers like Arianna Grande and Cardi B, then stop reading. This place is not the place for you. In an industry where everything seems to be simplified into repetitive hooks and family-friendly lyrics, EyeBawl is uniquely and passionately honest about the ugly things in life with their lyrics and thunderously rock and roll with their sound. The trio includes seasoned players Brian Bruce and Tyler Yoder on drums and bass guitar and Erin Silva, who provides raw female-fronted energy. 

Eyebawl’s second release Never Again” is a five song EP available on all major platforms as well as CDs and cassettes. The 21+ release show will be at Oddity Bar, 500 Greenhill Avenue in Wilmington, on September 21st at 8pm.

The three Wilmingtonians have been playing together since 2016 on stages ranging from the swampy lands of New Orleans to Steelers Country, Pittsburgh, and they never disappoint.  Their live show comes highly recommended from the underground music scene in Delaware and for good reason. A typical set features drummer Brian Bruce pounding passionately on his kit while singing backup vocals that sound like a punk rock Louis Armstrong. Tyler Yoder, the bassist, plays his Fender Musicmaster like the pro he is. Well-known in the musical community, he plays in three other bands and several side projects, including one with Firefly alumnus Brian Bruce of Fiance, as well as well as Scantron, a musical project fronted by James Everheart, previous lead guitar player for Low Cut Connie. He even has a solo side project called Milieu Lust. EyeBawl’s lead is an unabashed and audacious woman of rock named Erin Silva, who broke away from her bass playing days to front her own musical project. She sings with a voice that’s a little bit grungy, a little punk and a whole lot of attitude.

With lyrics like “You weren’t that bad, you weren’t that great either. Death won’t change that. Not now, not ever” and “I’m too young to feel this bad, but I’m too old to start again” EyeBawl takes you on an emotional journey seldom talked about, but easy to relate to, and puts it to music that creeps up your spine and forces you to nod in rhythm, agreeing to let her open you up. With each heart-wrenching lyric, Erin digs up the things you tried to bury deep down, puts them in your face, and screams you’re not alone in your insecurities and heartache.

The stage allows her to talk about her anxiety in a world where women are still screaming to be heard. Fender Cyclone in hand, screams she does. We chit chat about her upcoming project and what she hopes to give to herself and fans.

1. Where are you from and how long have you been making music?

I was born in Frederick, Maryland, which is west of Baltimore. Moved to Central Delaware when I was 10. Lived in Southern Delaware for a spell, but have been in Northern Delaware, mostly Wilmington, for a little over eight years. I picked up the guitar for the first time when I was 15 and have been making music since I was about 16, so 12 or so years. 

2. What do you enjoy most about being a musician? What do you hate most?

I love that making music is very therapeutic for me. Jotting down lyrics allows me a form of communication and dialog with myself at times. Moments when I’ll pick up the guitar and I’ll play a riff that sort of connects all of these intangible things into a piece of art that you can’t hold, but still feel. It’s special. These are all things I get to perform and share with others, which makes being a musician very, very rewarding at times. I suppose I hate playing shows that feel unrewarding. Learning to decipher between worthwhile shows vs not-so-much has been a challenge. Or sometimes maybe I’m not feeling my best, so I might not feel I played my best. Learning how to let it go and give myself a break is another challenge. Can’t win ’em all!    

3. What’s your proudest moment as a musician?

I would say my proudest was when I had finished my first ever solo performance. This was at HomeGrown Cafe in Newark, Delaware in 2015. I had been going through a lot, had been holed up a lot of nights in my one bedroom apartment in Newark writing songs. I had a friend who booked for Homegrown at the time who knew I had been writing and had some space to fill one evening. I was a nervous wreck and felt far from prepared, but I did it. Got up there and played these songs no one had heard and received nothing but positivity. And I didn’t die like I thought I would. It was great! Second was after our set the night our first EP Gutterbawl was released. 

4. You are obsessed with plants. Which is your favorite plant in the home and why?

I would have to say it’s this funky aloe plant I literally smuggled home from San Diego in 2015. That was around when my plant obsession started and I have managed to keep that little angel alive all these years, which is special to me.   

5. Who’s an artist out now that inspires you and how or why?

Grimes! I feel like I watched her go from a small time noise artist sitting on the floor with her pedals to being a full blown famous artist. I am inspired and proud of her. She has a beautiful mind and way of explaining strange things no one touches on.  

6. What do you hope people gain from listening to your music and coming to your show?

Songs on our new Ep touch on some heavy topics: dealing with loss and death and overcoming these hurdles. It’s called Never Again. Never Again can be taken as a negative thing, but I’m using it more for a new beginning. Another chance. Moving on. Things CAN get better. I want people to feel like they’re not alone! We’re all here together. I hope that any audience member can at least get a kick out of watching us putting it all out there and have fun watching us have fun!