These are the best of times for Pop Evil. The band just scored their first-ever No. 1 single with 'Trenches' off their 'Onyx' album. By earning the chart-topper, the group's hard-working ethic has now been validated.

In this week's From the Vault feature, we reflect back to 2009 when the band had just made the jump to a major label. Frontman Leigh Kakaty spoke at the time about the growing pains the band had to go through even to make it to that level and his comments show just how rewarding their journey to No. 1 has been.

The following Noisecreep interview was conducted by Allyson B. Crawford with Pop Evil's Leigh Kakaty on June 4, 2009.

"You always hear people say 'If I could go back and do it over again, I would.' I would say, 'If I could go back and do it over again, I wouldn't,'" Pop Evil lead singer Leigh Kakaty grimly admits to Noisecreep. Not that the band isn't excited about the future. After all, Pop Evil just signed a major contract with Universal Republic and will hit the road this summer with Judas Priest and Whitesnake. Still, about a decade of work has taken a toll. "It's tough. I've lost a lot of loved ones and friends. When you are passionate about something and you are driven, it's a blessing and a curse. I wouldn't trade it for the world but, to go back ... it's taken over ten years. When you think of the early days to find a sound and a vibe. The early years compared to now, we went through growing pains. No doubt about it."

No doubt indeed, but Pop Evil can finally relax just a little. The band's official debut 'Lipstick on the Mirror' was just rereleased by Universal Republic. It includes the new track 'Rolling Stone' as well as some acoustic songs. "Pop Evil means being able to pick up an acoustic guitar and having a connection with somebody," says Kakaty." It's also about turning up the amps as loud as you can, full face, full speed ahead and hit you with some hard rock stuff."

No strangers to the road, Pop Evil has been here, there and everywhere in recent months, playing with Buckcherry and Kid Rock, among others. It's that constant road warrior attitude and the love of the song that is making the band a winner in the eyes of many music fans. "I've always been a song guy," says Kakaty. "What gets thousands of people in an arena or an outdoor venue to actually sing the lyrics of a song? That's special when your hook is that strong that you can have thousands of people -- or even millions of people worldwide -- singing your lyrics. It's all based on the hook."

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