Written by Rebecca Oregel
During my first full week of Santa Cruz, I won a pair of tickets to Sun Room, a band complete with four guys from Southern California who play indie rock with a youthful surf sound. Having only listened to them casually when they appeared on my Spotify Daily Mix, I was intrigued and excited about seeing them live. I was essentially going in blind, and with them being my first concert experience (ever!) I was preparing myself for anything and everything. This is the Sun Room’s first headlining tour, and their energy and passion for their sound was infectious.
As soon as the venue darkened in preparation for their set, the air shifted. Cheers echoed around the room and the number of people increased. I felt like I was in for a ride, and soon enough, my predictions came true. Loud, heavy bass and powerful drums backed the strong voice of lead singer Luke. After a quick introduction of all the members (Luke, Ashton, Gibby, and Max), they got the ball rolling. They started off with their more mellow songs, and gradually got louder and more intense as the night wore on. All throughout their set, crowd surfers rode the wave of their sound and people moshed to almost every song (which gave me an opportunity to go from the back view to the barricade – thank you). During a rendition of Nancy Sinantra’s “These Boots Are Made For Walkin’” , almost everyone moved to the same rhythm, in a hypnotic trance with the Sun Room to thank.
As fierce as indie surf rock can be, Sun Room went even fiercer. As I tried to curve my way past the moshpit from the back view to the barricade, the airflow constricted the closer you were to the performers. But it was worth the loss of oxygen – here, it was less proxy to the phones and flash, and the people swayed and bumped to the music, eyes closed, completely absorbed in the moment of it all. They were Icarus being mesmerized by the sun. Too close but never close enough. When they ended their set, and the lights dimmed, people began to chant “one more song! one more song!” Soon enough, I found myself as one of the many voices who were not ready to leave just yet. When Sun Room came out for one last encore performance, the lights flashed an intense red and stayed like that throughout the entire course of the song. In a way I felt like it was a continuous explosion of sound.
The energy didn’t dissolve when the concert ended. As I delayed my bus ride back to campus, I stopped by an ice cream place to cool down and process what I just experienced. People from the concert also had the same thought process as me, and I saw groups chatter and sing their renditions of Clementine and Sol Del Sur all the way through the ice cream parlor and to the metro back home. As far as first concerts go, Sun Room is one to remember.