Incubus' Mike Einziger on Touring with System of a Down, KROQ Halloween Ball + More

October 16, 2018

Mike Einziger (Photo: Cody Black)


Incubus' Mike Einziger stopped by KROQ to chat with Stryker about the band's recent shows with System of a Down (and their history with them), Mike's MixHalo technology, and their upcoming performance at the KROQ Halloween Costume Ball.

Over the weekend, Incubus played a show at Glen Helen Amphitheater in San Bernardino with System of a Down to a crowd of over 45,000 fans. "The last two nights we were playing with System of a Down. Any Incubus fans out there know we have a lot of history with System. We came up playing concerts together - I wouldn't even call them concerts - in like the smallest, crappiest venues you could ever imagine all across the whole U.S," says Einziger.

"We literally played hundreds of shows together and it was such a fun time to be in a band. We spent so much time together on the road so it was really fun and nostalgic to get to play a couple of shows together. The show in San Bernardino was like 50,000 people and it was sold out. Something special happens when we get together and play together."

Stryker and Mike Einziger (Photo: Cody Black)

"We were both, Incubus and System of a Down, at the time - this was like 1996, 1997 - we were very little-known bands that were both signed to Sony Music. We were on the same record label, essentially. Every once in a while we would get an opportunity to open for someone else or get on a bigger tour, and they would as well. There were times they would be on tour with whoever they were opening up for, but most of the time we were just playing our own shows, building our audience brick by brick," he continues. 

On October 27th, Incubus will be performing live at the annual KROQ Halloween Costume Ball at the Fonda Theatre. "That sounds like a really good time. KROQ, Incubus, Halloween, costumes, music, laughter - and if you grew up in Southern California - 'fun, forest, and fantasy all rolled into one.' Santa's Villiage. Remember those commercials?" Einziger jokes. When asked about their costume attire, Einziger says that "we were talking about using a very specific 80s film as sort of the theme. We haven't decided yet." 

A limited number of tickets for the KROQ Halloween Costume Ball will be available for purchase Wednesday, October 17th at 10am to KROQ Street Team members. The only other way in will be to win access in the coming weeks.

Photo: Cody Black

The conversation turned to Einziger's project MixHalo. "It's a technology that I've been developing for the last two and a half years that basically allows audience members at live concerts to listen to studio-quality audio that's coming from a mixing board," Einziger explains. "It's just awesome. It plugs you directly into the artist in a way that is kind of indescribable."

Stryker prodded Mike about whether or not there was new Incubus music on the horizon. "We have been tinkering with stuff. We also know that next year, 2019, is the 20th anniversary of Make Yourself, which is crazy. I will never forget hearing 'Pardon Me' on KROQ for the very first time. We have some things that we're batting around, some ideas about taking some of those songs and possibly reimagining them in 2018, which might be really fun for our audience. They'll always have the original versions, but technology is different now, everything's different now."

"To be here in 2018 playing the biggest shows we've ever played, in front of more people than we've ever played, it's incredible. We feel really lucky and we have the support of people like you, Stryker, and KROQ. I mean seriously, we wouldn't be here without you and without your support. We really appreciate it and we're just excited for the future."