Nothing new under the sun

by Nathan Hall

If you’re going to name your new band after an immense star that reaches, on average, highs in the upper 15 million degrees, it’s a must that said band has got a lot of explaining to do right off the bat. Compound that astounding level of pretentiousness with christening your debut EP “Love and Death,” two of our humble planet’s most debated subjects ever, and you have a cataclysm of posturing and self-aggrandizement in the making.

Recently formed in Columbus, Ohio, and featuring the ex-drummer of seminal punk outfit New Bomb Turks, The Sun’s “Love And Death” CD provides 800-pound gorilla AOL-Time Warner with the over-produced faux garage rock the marketplace is apparently still clamoring for. The hilariously derivative opening track “Fell So Hard” dreams so badly to be the White Stripes you can almost taste it.

Aside from the tastefully left-field implementation of a Dr. Dre-style funk organ on “Rockstop,” the seventeen-minute disc does not cover any aural territory that has not already been flogged to death by the Vines, the Hives and others. Perhaps the only minor detail worth discussing at length is “Back in the Summer of 1972.” The tune itself is trivial at best, but it perfectly encapsulates the nonsensical neo-garage movement whose bedraggled coattails the band is obviously riding.

Judging from a summary glance at the inset band photo, one could confidently wager front man Chris Burney wasn’t even a drunken, lustful glimmer in his father’s eye 31 years ago. How on God’s green earth can The Sun be heartbreakingly nostalgic for a time and place they never experienced the first time around? It is all too eerily similar to the recent mid-1990s swing comeback, when disaffected dot-com billionaires copped mangled James Cagney accents, sported neon orange zoot suits, sucked on overpriced cigars and acted as if Prohibition was a cool time to be alive. Nothing to see here, folks. Please move along.

Nathan Hall welcomes comments at [email protected]