Sunspot
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Sunspot

Madison, Wisconsin, United States | Established. Jan 01, 1997

Madison, Wisconsin, United States
Established on Jan, 1997
Band Rock Alternative

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

Jan
10
Sunspot @ Mc Auliffe's Pub

Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin, USA

Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin, USA

Jan
03
Sunspot @ Schwoegler's Sugar River Lanes

Belleville, Wisconsin, USA

Belleville, Wisconsin, USA

Dec
12
Sunspot @ The Frequency

Madison, Wisconsin, USA

Madison, Wisconsin, USA

This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos

Music

Press


The lesson of the final scene in Major League was not lost on us here at The A.V. Club: The success of a national sports team is the ultimate settler of differences. Just ask all the odd couples hugging, like Pedro Cerrano and Eddie Harris, Roger Dorn and the dude who fucked his wife, or the regular joe and the punk rocker in the bar. So it comes as no surprise to us that Madison sci-fi, rock-nerd band Sunspot is getting recognition for its jocular Packers anthem, “Go, Pack!,” from a crowd that would normally scorn the band’s 12-sided-die-wielding kind. But what is most surprising is that FOX Sports has just licensed the song for use with its broadcast of the Packers’ Saturday night playoff game against the Atlanta Falcons.

The song was originally released more than two years ago on the Tailgate Tunes II compilation, but it’s garnering some renewed interest due the Pack’s recent playoff success. If only Sunspot had had the time to update the track with some “KUUUUHHHHHNNNNN” calls during the chorus. - The Onion AV Club


"There is really only one word that best describes Sunspot: fun." - Rick Tvedt - Local Sounds Magazine


"Even after 13 years and five albums, Sunspot manages to create fresh, interesting pop-rock with catchy hooks and witty lyrics." - Jacquelyn Askins - Examiner


"Don’t be fooled by their Midwest roots – Sunspot has not only received accolades locally, but has shared the stage with some pretty impressive national names over time, including Death Cab for Cutie, The Flaming Lips, Sponge, SevenMaryThree, Hot Hot Heat, and Sick Puppies. Even iconic Punker Milo Aukerman of Descendents fame has performed with Sunspot on live TV." - Dorise Gruber  - They Will Rock You


"Pretty heady stuff for an independent band" - Tim Brouk - Lafayette Journal and Courier


"I don't usually throw music into the Geek Speak mix, but something about Sunspot just speaks to me." - Rene Guzman - San Antonio Express-News


"It's always wise for a Madison band to be able to take its live set outside of our city's busy clubs and bars, but some choices are far bolder than others." - Scott Gordon - The Onion AV Club


"Madison's most tech-savvy band" - Rich Albertoni - Isthmus


"Sunspot are Madison's musical road warriors." - Rich Albertoni - Isthmus


"The trio have established their reputation as cool, dark and funny rockers over the past 14 years, and their magnetism is on the rise thanks to a new project that's redefining what it means to go to a concert." - Jessica Steinhoff - Isthmus


"Even after 13 years and five albums, Sunspot manages to create fresh, interesting pop-rock with catchy hooks and witty lyrics." - Jacquelyn Askins - Madison Examiner


"There is really only one word that best describes Sunspot: fun." - Rick Tvedt - Local Sounds Magazine


"Madison's most tech-savvy band." - Rich Albertoni - The Isthmus


...full-on melodic garage punk – variously reminiscent of Husker Du (the nailed-down guitar riffs) and the Minutemen (some welcome lyrical wit)... flashes of genuine originality... - Alex Ogg


...their tasty blend of rock and pop screams for radio attention and national exposure... ready for mass consumption. - MikeSOS


Sunspot's new CD, Cynical (officially out today) is a tsunami of drums and guitar that only occasionally lets you come up for air, and you'd better take that breath quickly, because the musical riptide will grab you again almost immediately.

Not only do Sunspot rock - they're smart. They bill themselves as "Power Pop Hair Punk Rock from Madison, Wisconsin", but, lyrically, they often wrap some very poetic imagery (and heavy subject matter) inside of that "power pop hair punk rock". When you hear a lyric like, "We stood outside ourselves/and then you moved/when I screamed 'Fire!' inside a crowded room," (from "The Breach") you know that you're not dealing with guitar-driven meatheads.

"The Heidegger Paradox" is a raging desire for the weekend as seen from the perspective of being trapped in office on Monday morning - "Life sucks/let's live it before we die," they declare. The kick is that a "party on, dude" song is transformed into something quite different when you consider the song's title. As an existential theory, The Heidegger Paradox proposes the "possibility as the possibility of the impossibility". Think about it. Sunspot did.

Also on the disc is the personal favorite "Scott Bakula", an ode to/lament about the Quantum Leap actor that's "spectacula" in its clever wordplay and, well, it's geekiness -

Scott Bakula/never played Dracula/laid down the smackula/on the bad guys

But, since it's Sunspot, they continue with -

Well he was honest, and sharing, and loving, and caring/the kind of guy that would always do the right thing/clever, and handsome, and so damn sensitive/and I'm not...Scott

How can you not love that?

Sunspot are observers more than participants in the madness at times - "I'm counting down the days/to oblivion/And I'm counting all the ways/that I'm a freak," sings Mike Huberty on "Cemetary Highway", which isn't so much a mopefest as it is a look at a world that seems hellbent on annihilation. Sunspot's standing over there on Mars, taking notes and jamming.

"Cynical": what can I say about a song that not only is a musical intro to the classic intellectual concept of cynicism, but also rhymes "realistic", "nihilistic", "solipsistic" and "hedonistic", except that I like a song that makes people want to bounce around like maniacs and makes them pull out a dictionary simultaneously?

And that's the beauty of the songs, really - they're happy sounding rockers with an intellectual core, thus satisfying the body and the mind in one fell swoop. A perfect example of a happy sounding song is, coincidentally enough, "The Happy Song", in which Sunspot don't spend their smarts on "$10 words", but rather on their vocal inflections to get across what they really mean. The way the lines "You make me happy/I feel sappy/when you're around/you make me queasy/lovin' is easy/when you're around" are spat out, you can almost hear their eyes roll when they sing them.

Defined in the scientific sense, a sunspot is a region on the sun that has a lower temperature than its surroundings that also contains intense magnetic activity. While a sunspot is still blindingly bright, it appears darker in contrast to its higher-temped surroundings.

Knowing that, Sunspot, the band, is very aptly named.

-Dale Johnson - I-See-Sound


One of the hardest working and relentless touring bands in the Midwest, Sunspot has built a following from New York City to Boston, Houston to Indianapolis, and Minneapolis to Chicago. Formed in 1996, the band realized the utopia of road rash in the fall of 2002, when after getting steady radio airplay, the crowds starting showing up in force.

-Tony Ziebol - Maximum Ink


"Sunspot is the hardest working band in Wisconsin."
-Dick Sycamore, describing Sunspot as Milwaukee-based XROXX's band of the month. - XROXX.Com


A talented band with a very unique twist on their music. - Torch Kerrang


'Radio Free Earth' is fifteen potent rock gems - Natasha Kassulke


Rock out, or go home. - Adam Metz


hard working... admirable Warped-style punk. - Al Ritchie


4.5/5 Stars- "Sunspot will certainly have their 'day in the sun' and if they keep putting out albums of this quality, they'll have more than one. I thoroughly enjoyed listening, in fact, even though I've finished with the review, the disc will still be rockin' next time I jump in the car. If you like the lyrics of Beck or Third Eye Blind and the music of MxPx or Blink 182 (yes...it's okay to like them), you'll probably dig Sunspot." - spongeballcornerpocket


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

Photos

Bio

Sunspot is recommended for fans of Muse, The Killers, and Rise Against. Their latest EP, The Sun King, is epic Power-Pop with punk and electronic influences.

The band has racked up a few awards and a lot of recognition during the past decade, including winning Rock Album of the Year in the Madison Area Music Association Awards three times and Artist of the Year from the Wisconsin Area Music Industry (other winners include Bon Iver, Garbage, and Violent Femmes.) They've shared the stage with Andrew WK, Death Cab for Cutie, The Flaming Lips, Sponge, SevenMaryThree, Hot Hot Heat, Crash Test Dummies and Sick Puppies. In early 2011, Sunspot licensed their song, "Go, Pack!" to FOX Sports for their Super Bowl coverage, with some residual coverage for the song on NPR as well as radio all over Wisconsin. Their 2013 EP, Arthuriana, was in rotation on nearly 200 college stations in the US and Canada.

Band Members