For Mike Horvath, playing live music is a release.
Even though it marks the end of their inaugural cross-Canada Feed the Obscene tour, Horvath’s band 2 Shadows is stoked to ring the metaphorical bells at The Kal May 27.
“The best part is being able to be a different person every night. Offstage, I’m very shy. On stage, I’m a very different animal,” Horvath said. “It’s very therapeutic. You can be a totally different version of yourself, a more exaggerated version. And the best thing is you can go right back to it.”
On stage, Horvath embodies the heavy metal energy for which the Vancouver headbangers are known, denoting a stark contrast from his laid-back off-stage demeanour.
“For me, it’s just become a natural thing,” Horvath said. “Regardless of the day I’m having, I always go up on stage and feel happy about it.”
2 Shadows left their mark on Vancouver’s heavy metal scene with their 2016 debut drop Transference.
An in-your-face eight-track exploration, Transference garnered significant recognition and peaked at No. 10 in the iTunes metal charts.
“We’re all super proud of it. No two songs have the same sound, they all sound so different,” Horvath said. “It’s good for a band to have a formula, but you also need to write something new.”
Drawing from inspiration from metal greats Slipknot, Five Finger Death Punch, Motionless In White, Rammstein and Asking Alexandria, 2 Shadows is comprised of James Holder and Tryst Germaine on the axes, Horvath on vocals and Sterling Paterson on the drums.
“The music kind of speaks for itself. We wear our inspirations on our sleeves. We take influences and roll with how we deliver it,” Horvath said.
However, their influences aren’t always traditional.
“It’s kind of different things you wouldn’t expect us to listen to like the Nightmare Before Christmas soundtrack,” Horvath said. “Those just kind of help us grow as a band.”
And it’s a formula that has worked for them, Horvath said.
“We’ve had a lot of positive reception from the audience — that’s really the most you can hope for,” Horvath said. “It’s been about 98 per cent positive.”
A partial motivator for that is 2 Shadow’s golden rule for live performances best demonstrated at their two loudest gigs to date: Thunder Bay and Kamloops.
“We have the rule that you aren’t allowed to stand still at a 2 Shadows show,” Horvath said. “That’s the best thing about it. We bring a lot of theatrics.”
While it marks the end of their inaugural cross-Canada tour, Horvath, who is celebrating his birthday between shows in Toronto, is ready to show the Okanagan what 2 Shadows is all about.
“We’re very excited,” Horvath said, adding that they will bring two new tracks with them to Vernon: a slower rock ‘n roll balladesque track and a classic, over-the-top heavy ditty full of breakdowns.
Horvath got his start in the business when he first picked up the stings in Grade 3 before transferring to vocals at age 16.
He was always interested in heavy music, but it wasn’t until he heard Mötley Crüe that he found his passion. And after meeting Crüe bass-man Nikki Sixx three times and catching their final tour, he was hooked.
“I want to be doing that one day,” Horvath thought. “It really changed my life.”
2 Shadows rocks The Kal alongside This Gun For Hire and Jeff Wenger May 27. Wenger starts at 10 p.m., Guns at 11 p.m. and Shadows at midnight. Tickets are $10 advance or $15 at the door. Advance tickets are available at The Kal and Monashees Wine-Spirit-Beer.