30-06-2024 Music 264

Frenchy and the Punk - Midnight Garden

Frenchy and the Punk - Midnight Garden

NYC post-punk duo Frenchy and the Punk presents their eighth album, 'Midnight Garden', via NYC indie imprint EA Recordings, arriving one year since their critically-acclaimed 'Zen Ghost' album. This record bursts with dance grooves, guitar-driven upbeat melodies and soaring vocals. Written in France and the USA, this is a post-punk, new wave, dark alternative collection to kick off the summer season.

Torchbearers of a new era in post-punk, their latest single 'Like In A Dream' bathes the listener in it’s reflective, beautiful moodiness, piercing the gloom with flickers of light, following the lead track - the dance floor frenzy 'Hypnotized'.

Formed in 2005, Frenchy and the Punk is vocalist, percussionist and lyricist Samantha Stephenson and guitarist-composer Scott Helland, co-founder of Deep Wound (with Dinosaur Jr. icons J Mascis and Lou Barlow) and Outpatients. Named one of the Top 25 duos in the US by Yahoo! Music, they profess a vivid blend of post-punk, dark folk, new wave, goth and punk cabaret. Helland is also known for his exceptional solo music project Guitarmy of One.

On 'Midnight Garden', Stephenson hits her stride - lyrically, vocally and with the synth sounds peppering the album. Helland shows his knack for infectious, and often euphoric, guitar melodies, propelling these tracks and perfectly complementing Frenchy's vocals.

Samantha Stephenson explains, "Midnight Garden feels like a new beginning of sorts. Even though this is our eighth studio album, there’s a lot of rising from the ashes, or starting over energy in these songs. I had a sense of things coming to an end, a kind of clearing the air and moving forward with a renewed sense of clarity and purpose. I feel like I am fully engaged in this music process, more so than ever before. I’m giving it my all, whereas up until a couple of years ago, I was fighting internally with the push and pull of visual arts vs music. I’m ready to let go of the past, I’m ready for a new chapter."

The euphoric title track 'Midnight Garden', with its gothic re-imagining of the Garden of Eden, speaks to soulmates who want to leave the world’s problems behind. 'Sleepwalk Shuffle' is a quirky post-punk track that questions the cultural path we find ourselves on as a society. 'Mr. Scorpion' laments the off-kilter balance of power and imagines a world free of planarian bygone ideologies. The remaining tracks offer up guitar-driven dance grooves with soaring vocals. The album ends with 'End of An Era', a straight up synth-driven track that leaves the listener with the ominous drone, capturing the zeitgeist of our time.

The duo has forged their own distinct path, touring the US and Europe with their artful two-person powerhouse of sound. To date, they've performed with Dead Can Dance's Peter Ulrich and Dresden Dolls' Brian Viglione, Thomas Dolby, Dinosaur Jr., The World Inferno Friendship Society, Rasputina, Cruxshadows, Aurelio Voltaire and Faun.

'Lost In A Dream' is available everywhere, including Apple Music, Spotify and Bandcamp. On June 28, the 'Midnight Garden' album, now available for pre-order, will be released on vinyl, CD and digitally.  After a successful UK tour, the band kicks off their American tour on June 22.

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