On his birthday and a month ahead of his LP release, the BK rocker shares reworked tunes and some very sweet visuals
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU // HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU // HAPPY BIRTHDAY DEAR PHRANNNNQUUUUUEEEEEE // HAPPPPYYYY BIRTHDAAAAAAY TOOOO YOUUUUU
(AND MANY MORRRRRRRE)
Here on BdBK, we feature nothing but the hits, baby! However, while it is Phranque’s birthday, we’re not here to talk about that classic customizable jam. Instead I’m thrilled to present some tunes that are typically not sung in front of a cake topped with open flames (tho as the youths say, they def are still ~fire~).
Introducing 101.3 K-Rock New York, the brand-new EP from the artist, out TODAY!
Featuring the artist’s previously self-produced rock songs reworked in the Windy City’s Electrical Audio, 101.3 K-Rock New York is the sister EP to Phranque’s forthcoming full-length Mahalo Chicago (out 5/27!).
While we’re premiering the EP here, what I’d really like to do is talk about the album. Mahalo Chicago was birthed in definitely unordinary circumstances, with an atypical-for-NYC instrument, and has an origin story that’s simultaneously completely unique and extremely illustrative of these unusual times.
Phranque was vacationing in Hawaii when, after three days of running around under palm trees breathing pineapple-scented air, he got what he thought was sun poisoning, but was in reality a breakthrough case of COVID. On his way to his hotel room for Lockdown With a View, he ordered and had picked up (sans contact!) a ukulele, and over the course of his quarantine period, he banged out 10 songs that helped him finally process the losses, stresses and woes he dealt with during the pandemic. After he recovered, tested out and made it back to the mainland, the songs were recorded. And Mahalo Chicago—a sonic time capsule featuring tropically-tinged tunes—was complete. (Listen to a few of the songs before the full album’s release here.)
Now let’s talk about one more release on Phranque’s spring roster. Along with being the anniversary of the artist arriving on earth, today also marks the one-year anniversary of 13 (La Cosa Nostra), the artist’s 2021 record, which he’s celebrating through the release of a new video that I’m also absolutely stoked to share here!
“Agent Provocateur is a collaboration [with] Austrian multimedia artist Katharina Höppel,” the artist told me of the vid over email. ” [It] was filmed in Spain along with various other locations in the US and Europe. The song is from [the] 2021 record 13 (La Cosa Nostra) and will appear on the b-side of [the] upcoming 27-song super deluxe cassette [editor’s note: !!!!!!!] which comes out 5/27 along with the Mahalo Chicago LP.”
While I’m not sure what the EP celebration or birthday shindig situation is for tonight (I have received zero invite to any roller rink), what I do know is that BdBK is teaming up with Phranque and throwing an album-release party for the forthcoming LP on 5/25 at Our Wicked Lady featuring big BK faves Ouster Nash, Hot Knives and Nuclear Family Fantasy—
Which, to be honest, is way better than Chuck E Cheese or whatever anyway.
Come for the Ukulele and don’t forget to BYOP.
(Bring your own pineapple.) (And, uh, I guess deep-dish pizza?) (Mahalo Chicago, baby.)
Feature image provided by the artist.