NYC-based goth pop-alternative duo Frenchy and the Punk present the single ‘Gear Geist’. Essentially translated as Gear Ghost, this song conjures the ‘ghost in the machine’ idea, which reflects the overall ‘mind phantoms’ theme of their latest album Zen Ghost’. The new video for this song was shot in Whitby and Thetford Forest during the duo’s UK ‘Zen Ghost’ tour earlier this year.
Frenchy and the Punk is vocalist, percussionist and lyricist Samantha Stephenson and guitarist-composer Scott Helland, co-founder of Deep Wound (with Dinosaur Jr.‘s J Mascis and Lou Barlow) and Outpatients. Tapped as one of the Top 25 duos in the US by Yahoo! Music, the duo profess a vivid blend of post-punk, cabaret and dark folk music.
‘Gear Geist’ is a largely instrumental track peppered with expansive atmospheric and ethereal vocals, adding texture and emotion. The melding of Helland’s guitar and organically produced sounds from the guitar, as well as keyboard and electronic embellishments and percussion, perfectly mesh to create an otherworldly soundscape.
“Whenever I sing those parts in the song it feels like a lament, an acknowledgement of the sadness in the world enveloped with a veil of the bittersweet nature of love, beauty, connection and loneliness in life,” says Samantha Stephenson.
“It was cloudy and raining in both locations, which was perfect for the mood of the track. The atmospheric and haunting vibe of ‘Gear Geist’ demanded a kind of setting that could reflect that mood.”
For this video, Stephenson was able to tap into her many years of dance training and performance to bring a strong dance element to the visuals. Aerialist Nicole Pisaniello from Host of Sparrows Aerial Circus (in Richmond VA) adds a gravity-defying element to that dance theme, sewing up the thread of a gothic embrace to the song.
Helland and Stephenson met in NYC in 1998. The spark was immediate, powerful and undeniable. They started collaborating on creative projects together, but it wouldn’t be until 2005 that they would start to collaborate musically after Stephenson spontaneously jumped on stage to accompany Helland during his solo guitar performance. The two began to tour with fevered zeal and striking aesthetic, building fervent fans on the mystical-folk/steampunk festival, coffeehouse, convention and club circuits with their boisterous performances.
With numerous recordings under their belt over the years, they’ve performed with Dead Can Dance’s Peter Ulrich and Dresden Dolls’ Brian Viglione, and opened for Thomas Dolby, Dinosaur Jr., The World Inferno Friendship Society, Rasputina, Cruxshadows, Hurray For The Riff Raff and The Young Dubliners.
After a full year of touring throughout the USA and Europe, Frenchy and the Punk is now back in New York, writing material for a new album planned for 2024. In the meantime, both the ‘Zen Ghost’ album and the ‘Cities In Dust’ single are available from fine digital outlets, including Apple Music, Spotify and Bandcamp. ‘Gear Geist’ itself will be offered on a ‘name your price’ basis via Bandcamp until December 15th.
Samantha Stephenson – Vocals, Percussion, Keyboard
Scott Helland – Guitar, Bass, Drums and Drum Programming
Recorded & mixed by Jason Sarubbi at Split Rock Studios, New Paltz, NY
Mastered at The Cage, Coventry UK by Martin Bowes
Produced by Frenchy and the Punk
Single artwork by Samantha Stephenson
Photos by Samantha Stephenson
Video filmed in Whitby & Thetford Forest UK & Host of Sparrows Aerial Circus US
Aerialist in video – Nicole Pisaniello
Oct. 21 EASTAMPTON, NJ – Autumn Lands Festival
Nov. 4 PITTSBURGH, PA – Witches’ Ball
Dec 2-3 WEST PALM BEACH, FL – Steampunk Adventurers Weekend
Jan. 13 COLTS NECK, NJ – Big Top Circus Ball
Feb 16-18 GETTYSBURG, PA – Mythicon
Apr. 6 GALVESTON, TX – Galveston Steampunk Festival
Apr 19-21 SAN METEO, CA – Clockwork Alchemy
Apr 27-28 HOLLY SPRINGS, NC – Festival of Legends
May 18 MILTON, PA – World of Fae Ball
May 31-June 1 DORSET, UK – Alice’s Wicked Tea Party Alternative Festival
‘Gear Geist’ https://youtu.be/X401L5EZ0GQ
‘Zen Ghost’ LP https://frenchyandthepunk.
‘Zen Ghost’ CD order https://batfrogs.com/product/
Apple Music https://music.apple.com/us/
“Explosive, subdued, confrontational, soothing, spikey, and accessible, an incredible blend of alt-rock shade and alt-folk light” ~ Big Takeover Magazine
“Captivating with a sense of adventure… Frenchy and the Punk’s music always injects a silver lining into their dusky post-punk. With music this fantastic, we can only hope that their art is not merely a sign of the times but a harbinger of better times to come” ~ The Spill Magazine
“Penetrating psych-soaked post-punk… Brimming with their signature cinematic drama and that unforgettable voice” ~ Global Texan Chronicles
“An inspiriting slice of post punk hued, new wave nurtured rock ‘n’ roll… under the skin and hungrily stirring the imagination in a flash” ~ Ringmaster Review