Incubus have played venues all over the world, from Denver’s Red Rocks to Helsinki’s Ice Hall. They’ve even played in China and the Philippines.

“We went to Manila for the first time a couple of years ago. It was a big outdoor event, 20,000 people, a shocking draw. We were just super excited; it was a pretty significant event,” says drummer Jose Pasillas.

And on July 13, the Grammy-nominated quintet will celebrate another notable occasion when they headline the Hollywood Bowl – their first show at the historic venue. The bowl has hosted countless legends, including Paul Simon, who was a fixture of Pasillas’ musical upbringing.

“My dad was always listening to music around the house. I specifically remember a lot of Paul Simon, so Graceland always sticks out in my head. It’s one of my favorite records, probably because that’s what I remember from growing up,” reveals Pasillas.

Along with vocalist Brandon Boyd and guitarist Mike Einziger, Pasillas formed the band in 1991 when they were still in high school in Calabasas, Calif. They are currently joined by DJ Chris Kilmore and bassist Ben Kenney, formerly of the Roots.

Pasillas attributes the band’s longevity to: “A solid relationship with each other. There’s ups and downs in every relationship. Trying to balance five personal relationships is difficult. We’ve already had two members leave and have gained two more. We’re definitely a complete unit now. Just being aware of each other, being supportive of one another, realizing that we’re fortunate to be able to play music, travel the world and do this as a living. Keeping that in mind, that helps us keep things in perspective.”

Seven albums, four No. 1 singles and several world tours later, the band released its first greatest hits collection last month. The compilation, entitled Monuments & Melodies, includes a solid mix from their back catalog – from “Stellar,” “Drive” and “Pardon Me” to “Love Hurts” and “Dig” – and two new songs, “Black Heart Inertia” and “Midnight Swim,” on the first disc and cover songs and rarities on disc two.

Monuments features cover art designed by Boyd, who is also a published author. Boyd and Pasillas are both avid visual artists and create designs for the band’s T-shirts as well.

“The fact that it’s imagery that comes from us makes it even cooler. It’s homemade, homegrown stuff to incorporate,” remarks Pasillas. “I think it’s cool if you can contribute in those other areas of your business.”

Einziger also explores other outlets for his creativity: in his side project band Time Lapse Consortium, as a producer and as a student enrolled at Harvard University. The band as a whole has a shared goal of giving back to their fans and the world through their charitable organization, the Make Yourself Foundation (makeyourselffoundation.org).

Since 2003, MYF has raised over a million dollars for local and worldwide charities. Moreover, the band does its part every day, even on tour, to raise awareness of important issues.

“We’ve been trying to make it a point to bring more awareness on greening. We’re going to have an Amnesty [International] table out on this tour so you can get information. We’re going to green our tour with biofuel tour buses, we’re going to be recycling everything, we’re going to be using organic foods,” says Pasillas. “Hopefully people are aware that we’re aware, and maybe that will inspire them to be more conscious. It’s been amazing we’ve been able to donate a million dollars over many charities, and we’re going to continue to do that. As long as we’re a band, selling tickets and out touring, some of our revenue will always go to a charity. We’re lucky we’re able to give back like that.”

After this tour, Incubus plans to give even more to their fans by concentrating on a new album.

Pasillas says, “We’ll sit down at the end of this year and really start writing a record. There’s no deadline for us, we have the luxury of a little bit of time under our belts. We’ll have a record out either end of next year or in 2011.”



Monuments & Melodies is currently available. Incubus will perform July 13 at the Hollywood Bowl. For more information, visit enjoyincubus.com.