Among the most enduring bands to truly capitalize from the early Wild West of the digital era, Hollywood Undead has paved the road to success on their own terms. Fast approaching their second full decade as a unit, the band's catalog of eight albums, of which no two sound alike, offers testament to the kind of diversity that is part of the DNA of the band.
Bringing their LA Story full circle, Undead's 2022 LP, Hotel Kalifornia was a universally praised effort that saw the band finally ditch the lazy labels of rap/rock to finally be understood for what they had always been - adaptable. An amalgam of the various individual influences that each bring to the table, schools of punk, hip hop, metal and beyond found an intersection with each contributor in Undead. While the combination was far from conventional, it was always authentic.
That unwillingness to compromise stylistically would play a vital part in the kind of unwavering loyalty that goes hand-in-hand in being down with HU. Finding fuel in both the love of the fans and the shit talk of their detractors, Hollywood Undead has made a career out of bucking the system and doing things their way. Given the kind of longevity the band has earned over the course of eight studio albums and legions of fans across the globe - even their biggest critics are now being forced to recognize game.
Ahead of the band's most recent Hollywood & N9NE Tour opposite indie hip-hop pillar Tech N9ne, the Knotfest team caught up with Undead vocalist Dylan Alavarez, AKA Funny Man for an extensive discussion on all things Hollywood Undead while exploring his corner of the world in Los Angeles.
The two discuss the history of the crew, going back to the band's first sold out Viper Room shows and bombing up the streets of the city with an 'Undead' stencil to get the buzz going. Alvarez explains how the mesh of subcultures in L.A. made it so skaters, gangsters and punks all found common ground - creating the kind of hydra-headed musical monster that would become Hollywood Undead.
Alvarez also reflected on the 15th anniversary of their seminal debut Swan Songs and how the album not only changed the trajectory of their lives as a band, but really set the bar for the years to come. Establishing a precedent that always meant evolving and experimenting, Hollywood Undead's legacy is one of paving their own lane and bringing the world along for the ride.
For One Day... Knotfest got to ride shotgun. Check the full episode below.