A Little Visit With Avian Sunrise.
Images by Candace Ann Photography.
“He was wearing an Underoath T-shirt. I thought we could be friends.”
A friend in college, or a bandmate for life. Members of Avian Sunrise, who began six years ago at the University of South Dakota are now set to release their third EP, “Little Visits,” on Sept. 4.
Formed in the latter part of 2008, lead vocalist of Avian Sunrise Bryan Wehrkamp gave the band an initial start when he began writing a song for his sister, who later lost her battle with depression. In talking to a fellow classmate and bass musician Corey Gross, they were able to assemble a group including current guitarists Luke Volden and Matt Bump, and a drummer who was later replaced by Paige VanderWeide in 2010.
“That first time it just felt like we were on to something, like it wasn’t just a jam session,” said Wehrkamp. “It was productive and pointed in the direction of starting a song and finishing it.”
“It’s like that event was kind of a catalyst almost. I feel like that was when we decided to take it more serious in a way that we weren’t just going to write songs,” said Volden. “We established that we wanted to write songs that would affect people positively, whether it be to help them fall in love or to battle depression, anything to make our songs super relatable so that people can be met at eye level.”
After graduating from college in 2010, the group decided to continue on in the music industry, establishing themselves as Avian Sunrise. The name implied the freedom to create, and the band has been busy doing just that. They first released “Your Broken Fail” EP in 2009 and “A Noisy World” EP in 2010. The group released their first full-length album “Silence in the Sound” in early May of 2011.
Avian has gained recognition around the region, opening for national acts such as Owl City, Remedy Drive, Lydia, Silverstein, Quietdrive, and The Dangerous Summer.
In the spring of 2011, Avian Sunrise’s songs “What You Deserve” and “A Noisy World” received placement on MTV’s “Real World: Las
Vegas,” and their songs have appeared on the movie trailers for “The Vow” and “The Words.”
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