Even though Jordan Lempe and Justin Renaud have been playing music together since they were in middle school, the Denver indie rock duo Sunboy only formed last year. With an ironic fondness of the Mile High City’s most popular alt-rock group, The Fray, and a passion for creating unique music videos, Sunboy are in it to make expressive music with an air of nostalgia. The men of Sunboy sat with AXS for an exclusive interview prior to their upcoming show at the Hi-Dive on Friday, August 29.
AXS: Are you all Denver natives? If not, where is everyone originally from?
Sunboy: Yes! Well, Jordan was born in San Diego - but moved to Denver when he was still a baby. Times were different then - It's much harder for babies to travel alone these days.
AXS: What brought Sunboy together?
Sunboy: We met each other in middle school and have pretty much been playing together ever since. We've been in and out of various bands and solo projects throughout the years, but just last year realized we were stronger as a duo.
AXS: Where was your first show in Denver, and what was the experience like? Who else did you play with at the show?
Sunboy: We headlined the Bluebird back in December. It was amazing to see so many people come out after only hearing three songs online. Denver gave us a very warm welcome! We'll never forget that show. Deerpeople, Swing Hero, and The Wild After opened the show.
AXS: Have any Denver musicians inspired Sunboy?
Sunboy: The Fray
AXS: What projects are Sunboy working on?
Sunboy: We're always trying to come up with music video ideas. Expect another one of those soon. Otherwise, Sunboy is the project. We're usually bouncing between recording, live rehearsals, or visual ideas. We like to think of it as one giant art project.
AXS: What else is Sunboy involved in locally, either as individuals or as a group?
Sunboy: We both work at a screen-printing shop just south of Denver. There have been talks of starting a clothing line - there just haven't been enough hours in the day to make it happen yet.
AXS: Does Sunboy have a goal in mind for the sound the band produces? Are there certain influences or themes the band tries to inject into its own music?
Sunboy: The only real goal is to make something fresh, and to impress ourselves – or make music that we would listen to if we weren't the ones making it. We also have a weird obsession with nostalgia. We find ourselves trying to capture these feelings of "the good ol' days" (i.e. listening to music as kids) and presenting it in modern, sometimes futuristic ways. Sunboy is a time-warp!
AXS: For someone who has never seen or heard Sunboy, what would you tell them to entice them to watch your set?
Sunboy: 60's psychedelia + 90's angst + the year 3000. Oh, and there are some crazy live visuals.
AXS: What would your ideal live show look like? Where would it take place? Any particular time of year? Would a specific band/musician share the bill with or open for Sunboy?
Sunboy: A summertime house show in the mountains! It would be outdoors, free, and there would be beer, beach balls, and a campout afterwards. Denver's own Wild High would open the show. Sober Sunboy would play at 9PM. Followed by drunk/stoned Sunboy at 11. and then a DJ set by Thom Yorke.
AXS: Besides this Friday at the Hi-Dive, what other shows are you looking forward to in the near future?
Sunboy: The whole band is going to see The Flaming Lips at Riot Fest this year. Also stoked about a house party we're playing in Boulder next month (Sept 27th) with Wild High!
AXS: What do you enjoy most about Denver’s music scene, and why?
Sunboy: The Fray