Music News

Sunburned Hand of the Man

Emerging from the remnants of experimental punk outfit Shit Spangled Banner, Sunburned Hand of the Man shambled into existence in 1997. A lot of bands refuse to be lumped into a specific genre, but this loosely affiliated group of musicians practice what they preach. Many have tried to put them into the freak-folk movement or neo-psychedelia, and while there are elements of both in Sunburned's recorded output, there are also strains of free-jazz jam and avant-garde noise throughout. Despite a constantly shifting lineup, the bandmembers appear to share the same aesthetic vision, resulting in an artistically cohesive sound. The multimedia spectacle of Sunburned's live shows affirms this impression and serves to enhance the mind-bending power of its frayed compositions.

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Tom Murphy is a writer, visual artist and musician from Aurora, Colorado. He was a prolific music writer for Westword and a documenter of the Denver music scene.