Fever Joy calls the shots

Avery Robitaille’s three-piece pop-rock band is quickly rising in the independent music scene.

Pierce Singgih, Arts & Entertainment Editor

(This story was originally published in print on March 14, 2019).

Many bands birthed from Biola often venture toward worship or contemporary Christian music industries. Alumni band For All Seasons is making a name for themselves among larger worship groups like Elevation Worship and Hillsong United, while student band Flight Deck throws it back to the early 2000s with Switchfoot and Relient K vibes.

However, indie pop-rock band Fever Joy seeks a different outlet for their artistry, following in similar footsteps as Biola’s most notable alumni band Cold War Kids. Fever Joy’s journey into the mainstream music industry comes nearly three years after they first jammed under the Biola Bell Tower. Since then, they have put the independent music circuit on notice with their angsty, electric sound and cerebral, reflective lyricism.


Composed of senior public relations major and vocalist Avery Robitaille, guitarist Kevin Holm and drummer Sean Baker, the three-piece band has only released two singles, but are quickly forging their identity through clever marketing and branding. With over 200,000 Spotify streams between their songs “Shots” and “R.Y.W.B,” listeners are clearly catching a fever for their music. They even recently performed live at South by Southwest in Austin, Texas, one of the largest music and film festivals in the nation––a far cry from when they first met at The Night Owl cafe in Fullerton.

Their music shreds with strong electric tones and foot-tapping beats as Robitaille’s low, commanding voice brings the entire band together. Their pop-rock sound was developed from their love of both genres and was formed with help from The Colourist frontman Adam Castilla as producer and Grammy winner Joe LaPorta as sound engineer, who has worked with artists like David Bowie, The Weeknd and Imagine Dragons.

“We really wanted to create an amalgamation of rock and pop and hit both of those intersections [to] infuse punk with more of a brighter pop sound,” Baker said. “That’s the theme and vision of Fever Joy, to have a binary thing, two opposite [sounds] juxtaposed together, so pop and rock seemed fitting.”  


Currently taking 18 credits and set to graduate this May, Robitaille often finds it difficult to balance her days as a student and nights as a rockstar. However, her passion for music, songwriting and performing live knows no bounds, making it all worth it in the end.

“[When I’m performing live], I literally feel like I’m on cloud nine and in heaven at the same time,” Robitaille said. “There’s no experience that compares to it.”

Their March 8 performance at the OC Observatory in Santa Ana showcased how truly impressive they are live. Robitaille has natural stage presence, commanding the Observatory with energy and grit, while Holm and Baker allow her to shine with stoic “too-cool-for-school” attitudes, punctuating their angsty demeanor. Performing live allows them to vibe with an energetic audience, creating inexplicable, blissful connections.

“I always think about it like when you’re listening to a really good song, you feel a certain type of way,” Baker said. “Anybody listening to a song will feel some kind of emotion or it’ll make you feel really good. When you’re playing live, it’s like that times a thousand. You’re creating those moments and it’s always an interactive experience if the crowd’s into it.”


They expect their first EP to release later this fall with more pop-centric songs. While they infuse both pop and rock into their music, their first two singles are heavier on the rock side, but Holm says the EP will feature songs more on that pop side of the spectrum.

Although Fever Joy’s pop-rock sound gets toes tapping and heads bobbing, they want their songs to do more than just entertain. Their first single “Shots” is fun and electric-heavy, but they also want the song to encourage women in abusive or toxic relationships to stand up for themselves.

“We don’t want to just be good music, we want to have good messages as well,” Robitaille said. “I am writing all the time. I started out writing ever since I was little. I write based on personal experiences and that’s how ‘Shots’ came about. I know there’s a lot of girls who feel like they don’t have a say in their relationship, so this song is to tell them they can and should have a say and they should be confident in what they want and what they feel.”