In early 2002, Kozelek assembled Sun Kil Moon with former Red House Painter Anthony Koutsos, Black Lab bassist Geoff Stanfield, and erstwhile American Music Club drummer Tim Mooney. Their debut LP, Ghosts of the Great Highway, appeared to wide critical acclaim in late 2003, and Kozelek assembled a new touring band to support its release, spending the better part of 2004 on the road. He also continued his film career, again playing a fictional musician in the 2005 big-screen adaptation of Steve Martin’s comedic novella Shopgirl. That summer, Kozelek joined with Low’s Alan Sparhawk in the classic rock cover band the Retribution Gospel Choir, issuing a tour-only EP in advance of the second Sun Kil Moon album, the much maligned Tiny Cities, a collection of covers by indie rock band Modest Mouse. The album was the first released on Kozelek’s own Caldo Verde label. April, featuring guest vocals from Will Oldham and Ben Gibbard, followed in 2008. Kozelek switched it up again for 2010’s Admiral Fell Promises; he recorded ten new songs accompanied only by a nylon-stringed guitar. The like-minded Among the Leaves, Kozelek’s fifth outing under the moniker, arrived in 2012. An uncharacteristically direct collection of songs, entitled Benji, was issued in February of 2014. The album was an unexpected critical and commercial success, hitting #75 in the Billboard 200 album chart and ranking in year-end lists from numerous publications, including FACT, who named it the best album of 2014. Kozelek’s sudden increase in media attention also spotlighted his infamously crabby onstage behavior, which sometimes threatened to overshadow his music; a one-sided feud with the War on Drugs was particularly well-publicized. Kozelek ended 2014 with the long-promised release of Sings Christmas Carols, his solo album of holiday standards. Sun Kil Moon’s seventh album, Universal Themes, arrived in June of 2015.
Click here to listen to Sun Kil Moon via Deezer.