Hailing from Portland, Oregon, Sun Atoms is the stage name for alternative rock musician Jsun Atoms. Today we’re announcing the group’s new album Let There Be Light, which is out on October 1, as well as premiering a new animated video for new song “Don’t Take Me To Your Leader.” The new album, which was produced by The Dandy Warhols’ guitarist Peter Holmström, will be released on Little Cloud Records in the United States and The Acid Test Recordings in Europe.
Let There Be Light takes influences from a variety of psychedelic sounds, from darkwave to avant pop, creating a sound much in line with bands Atoms has shared the stage with like Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Allah-Lahs and The Jesus and Mary Chain. The record includes guest appearances by Alex Maas of The Black Angels (“The Cat’s Eye”) plus Jasno Swarez of The Vandelles, Gregg Williams, Bob Mild, Sacramento punk band Pets and of course, producer Peter Holmström. Hope Sandoval even picked them as an opener on tour and included them on her Brooklyn Vegan playlist.
“Don’t Take Me To Your Leader” opens with a playful, romping guitar riff full of delightful but subtle guitar effects. Atoms’ sung-spoke vocals have a female accompaniment, adding a touch of youthful energy – you can just see the vocalists smiling as they sing their way through the track. The video is an animated clip that takes us through a non-linear evolutionary cycle, filled with bright colors and characters.
“The vision for the video was that we begin with a single-celled creature that evolves into various stages as the music changes,” said Atoms. “The classic evolution posters of monkeys, neanderthals and humans were discussed as a model, but we didn’t think any of this evolution would be particularly linear or traditional. All sorts of alien forms happen along the way, and individual limbs or features evolve before others do. The idea was that the backdrop would be one long continuous path, ever-changing just like the creature itself. Foreground art would pass, also. The song has such a flow to it, and it’s steady enough rhythmically, that Casey thought something meditative and slow but also constantly changing would be a good fit. Perhaps halfway through our beast evolves into something sorta humanoid, or a few variations on a humanoid, but then it would become something else entirely. Casey even mentioned that maybe it’ll evolve back into a single-celled being at the end.”
Atoms spent the quarantine working on the new eight-song album, working with Holmström, who is a long-time collaborator. Files were sent back and forth from London, Brooklyn, Austin and Sacramento, creating what would become Let There Be Light from a distance.
Let There Be Light track list
1. “The Cat’s Eye”
2. “Half Robot Half Butterfly”
3. “Captain Tunnel Vision”
4. “Don’t Take Me to Your Leader”
5. “Super Switch Kid”
6. “Fell for You”
7. “Two Wolves and a Lamb Voted on What’s for Dinner”
8. “Praying Mantis”