SUNSPOT TO DELIVER SIXTH STUDIO ALBUM WITH SCI-FI BENT
Madison Rock Band Returns with The Slingshot Effect November 22
Madison, WI—As a trio that has staked its very existence on making obscure references and turning them into something universally palatable, Madison rock band Sunspot has once again pushed its musical boundaries with a forthcoming album, The Slingshot Effect (November 22 release). Sunspot will celebrate with a release party in Madison at The Frequency on Friday, November 18. As the theme this time around, singer/bassist Mike Huberty says that The Slingshot Effect is the “rock ‘n’ roll equivalent of the Sci-Fi Channel.”
“This is Sunspot’s electro-space rock record,” Huberty adds. “Whenever we would watch a movie about the future when we were growing up, the music they listened to was always very industrial-sounding. Since we are living in the future now, we wanted to bring those influences into our new album.”
The full-length, which is an extension of the EP the band released in March, Deus Ex Machina (and those three songs are also featured on The Slingshot Effect) pushes the envelope thematically. That means turning monsters into the heroes of “We Are The Darkness,” reframing humanity as celestial beings in “Stardust,” and showing how protectors aren’t always saving the right people in “Guardian Angel”. “Cannibal" has a little bit of all history's favorite man-eaters in it. And “The Slingshot Effect” itself is inspired by the method of time travel in Star Trek (whipping a spaceship around the sun at faster-than-light speed), wherein a person can’t alter the past no matter how badly he or she might want to.
Also true to form, Sunspot put much of the focus on the music and on the studio aspect itself. “The recording process for this album was unique for us in that we worked a lot more with different percussion sounds, on top of our usual live drum sound,” says drummer Wendy Lynn Staats. “The Major Arcana (rock opera) tour made us comfortable with incorporating electronic sounds and samples into our standard live rock format. I think it impacted our whole approach to writing and performing this album, and took our songs in a new and fun direction.”
The band also took advantage of some new gear, including guitars that Huberty and guitarist Ben Jaeger received as part of an endorsement with German company Hoyer. “We generated some great sounds and our engineer, Eric Katte (Doug Stone, Ricky Skaggs, and Kenny Rogers), continues to show his mastery of the mixing board and his passion for our music,” said Jaeger.
But along with that passion comes a love for what Sunspot does best—which is to surprise its fan base and entertain them thoroughly at the same time. “The fun part is taking something conventional and twisting its meaning completely around,” said Huberty. “We love finding the fantastic in the ordinary.”
Rock band Sunspot 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 for Singularity (2010) and Loser of the Year (2004). Sunspot is a symphony of guitars and voices, soaring melodies wrapped around hyper literate poetry and wicked rhythms. Male and female harmonies collide with expert guitar work and pop sensibility. Sunspot is rock music that's smart, fun, and powerful. Think the Fountains of Wayne or Barenaked Ladies with Lars Ulrich on drums and Eddie Van Halen on guitar. The band has recorded six albums, a DVD and an EP, as well as over 150 biweekly video podcasts (Sunspot Road Mania), and have shared the stage with Death Cab for Cutie, The Flaming Lips, Sponge, SevenMaryThree, Hot Hot Heat, Crash Test Dummies and Sick Puppies. In 2010, Sunspot released the DVD version of their multimedia spectacl e, Major Arcana. That was followed by the EP, Deus Ex Machina in March 2011. Also 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 numerous Wisconsin radio stations.
For more information and tour dates, please visit http://www.sunspotmusic.com