Randi Hernandez
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We Got the Beat: Son of the Sun

L-R: Joseph Stocker (keyboard, guitar), Steve Matthews (bass), Jeremy Franklin (guitar), Zak Ward (vocals, guitar), Brandon Delmont (drums)

L-R: Joseph Stocker (keyboard, guitar), Steve Matthews (bass), Jeremy Franklin (guitar), Zak Ward (vocals, guitar), Brandon Delmont (drums)

Son of the Sun doesn’t just have a clever band name – the name of their record company, I Blame Yoko Music, is equally as brilliant. In terms of the band’s sound, I personally blame Tom Petty, the movie Reality Bites, and the early 90’s for their simple (albeit pleasing) debut offering, The Happy Loss.

The members of Son of the Sun got to know each other in the same way as most music geeks do – by sharing their musical tastes over the internet through file-swapping. Son of the Sun formed in early 2007 with two members living on opposite sides of the country. Joseph Stocker (guitar, keyboards) lived in New York and Zak Ward (lead vocals, guitar) lived in California. After Zak moved back to Upstate, New York, the duo went on to add Jeremy Franklin (guitar), Steve Matthews (bass), and Brandon Delmont (drums), and shortly afterward (in 2008) they recorded their EP, Before the After.

Although the band has been described as “melodically detailed rock” by their managers and handlers, their sound can best be labeled “soft rock” – Not the soft rock on the radio airwaves of your local “Lite” channel – but soft rock before it was for pussies. Lead vocalist Zak Ward sounds thrillingly similar to a male version of Juliana Hatfield, and the band provides instrumentation that seems lightly coated in the psychedelic syrup of The Beatles’ Magical Mystery Tour. Standouts of the album include the soulful “How Can it Be?”, which would be perfect on an angst-ridden soundtrack for a flick boasting a “love gone wrong” theme, and “April Fools”, which could also work well in the aforementioned movie genre – during, of course, a flashback montage of the happier times. Sometimes the sonically simple songs are the most effective, as they are the ones that make your heart ache the most.

Look, let’s put it this way – not all records can be written by music theory students, or lyrics by poets. But even when writing about peanut butter sandwiches, Shel Silverstein had the power to move his audience. Such is the case with the music of Son of the Sun – It is straightforward, yet still satiates.

To get more information about the band and upcoming gigs, please visit their website at www.sonofthesunmusic.com or their myspace page. To see the band in action, also please check out their Youtube page.

Follow the link for a free download of their song “April Fools”.

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