August 17, 2021

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Three veterans of successful rock radio bands (Ryan Williams from Red Sun Rising, James Lascu and Matt Puhy from Wilson) started from absolute zero on May 4th, 2021 with their new band, MONARCH. They set up social media accounts for the band that day and 20 days later they released the debut single, “The Fray.” The fans flocked to the social media pages and the press was impressed, with Loudwire stating “(The Fray is) emboldened with an infectious guitar line, slow burn low end build and a subtle swinging beat. The future looks promising for this new band.” Radio stations came calling to spin the track and many called it “Muse-like with guitars instead of synth.”

And now comes “Pearls” – a track that will call more comparisons to Soundgarden than Muse – a sign of the band’s exploration of sound that will diverge even further on their full length release. Produced by Bob Marlette (Shinedown, Seether, Filter), the as-yet-untitled album is due out February 2022.

The lyric video created for “Pearls” reflects the core message of the song. Guitarist, Ryan Williams explains “We wanted a lyric video that connected the attitude and feel of the song with the overarching message. It is ultimately a message of hope and happiness wrapped in a dark melody. Life is fleeting and we all have that in common. Once you come to that realization, you can start living for you. We are all just pearls falling from broken strings.”

MONARCH consists of Ryan Williams, whose term as guitarist and songwriter for Red Sun Rising helped thrust the band from garage to greatness and James Lascu and Matt Puhy, AKA the powerhouse rhythm section from rock band Wilson (a band known for their amazing live shows)! Adding fresh perspective is MONARCH’s vocalist Sabastian Duke.

The seeds for MONARCH were planted in 2015 when both Red Sun Rising and Wilson were on tour with mutual friends, Nothing More, on their JENNY US tour. Though they were already labelmates, this would be the first meeting between Ryan Williams, James Lascu and Matt Puhy. The three quickly hit it off spending the next five years crossing paths as they crossed continents, performing nearly 1,000 shows between their bands!

It was merely a coincidence that both bands’ runs would come to an end in late 2019. Williams set out on a new path – co-writing and producing other artists. As he worked on other people’s material, the bug to write his own came back. His first call was to James Lascu. Within weeks James drove in from Detroit and the two found themselves firing on all cylinders. With ideas for songs coming at a fast pace, MONARCH was in motion. One week later the Center for Disease Control would announce the existence of COVID-19. What initially felt like a terrible twist of fate, soon became all the motivation (and time) the two needed to search for the rest of the band. After an extensive search, singer Sabastian Duke of Norman, OK was chosen as lead vocalist.

Get into “Pearls” - Follow on socials and contact to hear more about MONARCH!


✏️Press courtesy of For The Win Media✏️

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Asbury Park Vibes is a multi-media publication that promotes musicians through live show coverage, photography, interviews, podcasting, and marketing. Our coverage focuses keenly on the NJ/NY/PA metropolitan region; however, we also highlight artists from all across the US and UK.

The City of Asbury Park was the inspiration for our name because the community perfectly embodies the essence, vibes, and culture of a dynamic and electrifying live music scene, as well as its effect on fans.

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