Sun Kil Moon is the current project of San Francisco, California-based singer-songwriter Mark Kozelek, best known for his previous band, Red House Painters. Sun Kil Moon sees Kozelek undertake all the writing, composing, singing and guitar playing accompanied by Anthony Koutsos (also an ex-member of RHP) on drums, and Geoff Stanfield on bass. Tim Mooney also played drums with Sun Kil Moon until his death in June 2012. The band is named after Korean bantamweight boxer Moon Sung-Kil.
Following the dissolution of Red House Painters after the tumultuous release of their last album Old Ramon, Kozelek released a handful of solo recordings before forming Sun Kil Moon in 2002. Their debut album, Ghosts of the Great Highway, was written entirely by Kozelek, and released by Jetset Records in 2003. It is an album centered around the theme of memory, connecting Kozelek's haunting memories with the true-life stories of deceased boxers, such as featherweight champion Salvador Sanchez and flyweight Pancho Villa. Kozelek's music with Sun Kil Moon spans genres such as the simple acoustic country-folk of "Glenn Tipton" to the heavy, Crazy Horse-esque rock of "Salvador Sanchez" and the light-hearted "Lily And Parrots," onto the fourteen minute psychedelic tour de force, "Duk Koo Kim" (another homage to a deceased boxer) and the beautiful and haunting "Gentle Moon" and "Carry Me Ohio." Kozelek's voice is now more flexible and less downcast than in his work with Red House Painters, resulting in a resonant and often beautiful album.
The band's follow-up Tiny Cities was released on November 1st 2005 on Kozelek's own Caldo Verde label. The album covers eleven songs by the indie/alternative group Modest Mouse and, in its sparse production and spare instrumentation, is more or less a solo work by Kozelek.