Meet the Taco Bell-Addicted Supplicants of American Cosmic Music: Sun Seeker
Sun Seeker’s music sounds like a road trip across America; it’s languid, syrupy and boasts a throwback quality that fans of Gram Parsons (the de facto father of Cosmic American Music) will find appealing.
It’s the kind of band that prompts critics to use myriad words relating to the sun, and not just because of the name. Because every note of every song makes you think of the way the light looks when it’s morning in the country. Sun Seeker is refreshing. It’s light. It will make you want to hide in these last days of the dying summer. Which is why we’ve chosen the band as this week’s TIDAL Rising Artist.
The Nashville band started playing together in eighth grade, finding camaraderie in their fandom of groups like the Band, Wilco and the Buzzcocks. Now in their twenties, they released their debut EP, Biddeford, this summer on Third Man Records. From the charming chiming and whistling that kicks off opener “Churchhill” (whose upbeat opening belies a darker song about a nefarious heartbreaker) to the poppy yet contemplative “Won’t Keep Me Up at Night” (written by guitarist-vocalist Alex Benick during a stint working on a farm), the EP is through-and-through a complete pleasure. (Fun fact: The title of the record comes from the farm where Benick worked.)
TIDAL had the chance to chat with Benick a bit about the band, his karaoke picks and some of Sun Seeker’s on-the-road rituals.
Who is Sun Seeker? Introduce yourselves.
Sun Seeker is: Alex Benick (vocals, guitar, Local Man), Ben Parks (drum/s, vocals, Local Sweetheart), Asher Horton (bass, vocals, Local Candyman) and Rodrigo Avendano (keys, Local Honest Man).
When did you first get into music?
I have always had interest in music. My dad and my older brother are both musicians and supporters of musicians. There were always instruments around so it was easy to find myself playing them.
Who were your musical heroes growing up?
When I was really young, I listened to a lot of Television and Lil Wayne. I still consider them to be musical heroes, but I’ve also added Wilco and Ariana Grande to that list.
Name an album, artist or experience that changed your perspective on music?
Yankee Hotel Foxtrot by Wilco is the album that changed the way I think about music the most. It definitely influenced my approach to lyricism and [my] candor, openness in approaching the craft of songwriting. Also every Jason Molina song ever changes the way I think about music.
What’s the most unlikely band or artist that inspires your own music?
I think we find a lot of influences in contemporary pop music. I don’t see it as much of a surprise, but I suppose somebody else might. It’s where you find the best vocal melodies executed over ‘simple’ musical arrangements.
What should we know about your album?
It was engineered, produced and mixed by our dear friend Buddy Hughen. I think that’s important cause he is a baller. Also, it is a collection of songs that I wrote when I was younger, so I am a bit more distant from the subject matter. It’s fun to be able to release and revisit that time in my life. It’s like time travel, bro.
Do you have any tour rituals?
1) Eat $500 in Taco Bell
2) ALWAYS huddle up before show
3) Sleep in the same bed
4) Ben drives (if he doesn’t, it will be a bad show)
5) Listen to at least one Slipknot song pre-show
6) Get paid (this is a ritual)
What are your favorite karaoke songs?
There is only one. “Yellow” by Coldplay.
What’s the best new song you discovered recently?
My favorite new song right now is probably any song off of the new Sheer Mag album. They are the best band with the best songs. The best new song we’ve heard this year might be “I Live Now As a Singer” by Julie Byrne.
What’s next for you all?
Just touring all over the place and trying to connect with new folks. And maybe every getting started on recording the debut LP, but who knows?
If your music was a kind of party, what would it be?
It would definitely be a birthday party. My birthday party, to be exact.
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