26 Feb 2017

Sun Kil Moon

From New Horizons, 5:00 pm on 26 February 2017
Mark Kozelek - Sun Kil Moon

Mark Kozelek - Sun Kil Moon Photo: supplied

Sun Kil Moon have just released their eighth album Common as Light and Love are Red Valleys of Blood, and as William Dart says, it doesn't seem 14 years since they released their first.

Or should we refer to them in the singular? Sun Kil Moon is really the stage moniker of American singer/songwriter/guitarist Mark Kozelek and although he performs with a band, he also often performs as a solo artist.

The first album, Ghosts of the Great Highway made quite an impact in 2003, with one critic, Jason Korenkiewicz, even evoking the mana of John Steinbeck and Edward Hopper to catch the expansive, continent-traversing narrative of its songs.

William dips into Ghosts as well as 2005's Tiny Cities, 2010's Admiral Fell Promises (inspired by the playing of classical guitarist Andrés Segovia) and 2014's Benji (taking a nostalgic cue, if not its subject material from the old doggie movie) before concentrating on Common as Light, which again incorporates Kozelek's recurrent themes of travelling, politics and boxing. But crucially, it's an album in which the songwriter angrily confronts the sorry, hate-filled world of mass killings and Donald Trump.

Playlist

'Song title' (Composer) – Performers
Album title
(Label)

'Brother Sun, Sister Moon' (Leitch) – Buddy Comfort
Brother Sun, Sister Moon Soundtrack
(Tellurian)

'Salvador Sanchez' (Kozelek) – Sun Kil Moon
Ghosts of the Great Hightway
(Caldo Verde)

'Tiny Cities Made of Ashes' (Brock et al) – Sun Kil Moon
Tiny Cities
(Caldo Verde)

'Australian Winter' (Kozelek) – Sun Kil Moon
Admiral Fell Promises
(Caldo Verde)

'Jim Wise' (Kozelek) – Sun Kil Moon
Benji
(Caldo Verde)

'Bergen to Trondheim' (Kozelek) – Sun Kil Moon
Common as Light and Love are Red Valleys of Blood
(Caldo Verde)

'I Love Portugal' (Kozelek) – Sun Kil Moon
Common as Light and Love are Red Valleys of Blood
(Caldo Verde)