l-r: James Lascu, Ryan Williams, Sebastian Duke, Matt Puhy
photo: Melinda Boyd

The band MONARCH featuring ex member’s of RED SUN RISING & WILSON will debut “THE “FRAY” in May and they couldn’t be more excited. 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 Sebastian 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 1000 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 Sebastian Duke of Norman, OK was chosen as lead vocalist.