KENAI, Alaska — Static Cycle is the biggest thing since the world-record 127-pound cabbage at the 2009 Alaska State Fair. Fitting for a band whose lead singer, Jared Navarre, calls the Matanuska-Susitna Valley home.
Also fitting for the group's recent brush with national fame for having a cameo appearance by Bristol Palin in its music video "Inside this World of Mine," released at the height of her "Dancing with the Stars" fame.
And with a gig in January opening for rapper Ludacris at the Sullivan Arena, Static Cycle is kind of a big deal.
"I treated them like rock stars the day I met them because I knew they were going to be," said Molly Poland, owner of Hooligans Lodge and Saloon in Soldotna.
The band, including Navarre, drummer Dennis Smith and lead guitarist Josh Witham, and two newer members, Johnny Nabors on bass and Danny Resnick playing the keys, played there Jan. 28 as part of a statewide tour before heading off on a national and European tour later this year.
"They just have blown up they will not be doing bar venues any more after my show," she said.
But the Static Cycle boys seem to shirk any mention of fame.
"We don't consider ourselves rock stars but we enjoy doing what we do," said Smith, who's from Anchorage.
Poland said the band became a national act before getting Palin in its music video last fall, but that just put them over the top.
"It was great to have her in the music video," Resnick said. "She was really easy to work with and she was down to support an Alaskan band."
Being from Alaska is a big part of Static Cycle's shtick. You've probably seen the t-shirts around that sum up the band's attitude — "I love Alaska. And I kinda like Static Cycle."
"We consider it one of the greatest privileges in the world to represent our home state," Smith said. "We're proud to be able to take a bit of Alaskan music and bit of Alaskan culture and share it with the rest of the world."
The group had expected to "pretty much rock it" at Hooligans, one of the stops on their current Alaska tour.
And that rocking it means giving fans a taste of their new music from their two EPs, recently released "Part 1: Hydrate" and "Part 2: Rehydrate" due to be released in about six months on their own label, Black Records. These albums are follow-ups from their 2008 self-released debut, "When We Meet Again."
"With the new record there's a different sound," Smith said. "Instead of having two guitars we decided to have a keyboard replace the guitar."
Smith called their keyboardist Resnick, of Anchorage, "the new sound of Static Cycle."
He said the bands vast influences, from country pop to 90's alternative grunge to gangsta rap, really meshed on their latest release.
"Our different styles and different influences really came together as a melting pot," he said.
But before they embark on an international tour they're ready to share their brand of "hip hop symphonic rock fusion," according to Resnick, with the Kenai Peninsula.
"It's been cold outside, it's been lonely in the winter time. We want everyone under one roof rocking it," Smith said. "We want to show the Peninsula a good time."
Information from: Peninsula Clarion, http://www.peninsulaclarion.com