“People are always surprised that I’m playing a P-Bass and he’s playing a Stratocaster – it’s crazy just how heavy they can be”: Meet husband-and-wife guitar team Spotlights, the dreamsludge tonesmiths championed by Mike Patton

Mario and Sarah Quintero of Spotlights perform live
(Image credit: Phil Atkins / Tim Mosenfelder/Getty Images)

As the old saying almost goes: couples who riff together stick together. That’s certainly the case for Pennsylvania-based husband-and-wife duo Mario and Sarah Quintero, whose shared love of drop tunings, fuzz and atmospheric songcraft has made Spotlights a standout proposition in the heavy music space for around a decade.

Spotlights are signed to Ipecac, record label of Faith No More icon Mike Patton, and in June, they’re embarking on their first-ever UK headline tour, before hitting Europe for a string of dates in support of labelmates Mr. Bungle and Oxbow. The shows come a year after the release of their fourth album, Alchemy For The Dead.

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Ellie Rogers

Since graduating university with a degree in English, Ellie has spent the last decade working in a variety of media, marketing and live events roles. As well as being a regular contributor to Total Guitar, MusicRadar and GuitarWorld.com, she currently heads up the marketing team of a mid-scale venue in the south-west of England. She started dabbling with guitars around the age of seven and has been borderline obsessed ever since. She has a particular fascination with alternate tunings, is forever hunting for the perfect slide for the smaller-handed guitarist, and derives a sadistic pleasure from bothering her drummer mates with a preference for “f**king wonky” time signatures.