Monakr Calling Out EP on LP
A passing conversation in a studio. Whispers among friends at a show. The notion of musicians working together on a project is often suggested yet seldom realized. Chicago's Monakr was born from such a notion in the grey of Winter 2014. It is a collaboration featuring Saam Hagshenas and Jonathan Marks of Hey Champ, two time Grammy-nominated vocalist Matthew Santos, and Dan Brunelle of Gemini Club.
Hagshenas had approached Santos for years about lending his voice to a Hey Champ production, but the timing and music was never right until 2014, when Hagshenas wrote "Diamond" after losing his uncle to cancer. Santos added his vocal flair to the track, and the result led the two to decide this project should live beyond a single song.
Drummer and co-producer Marks was then tapped to lend his talents to the group. Finally they approached Brunelle, who's band Gemini Club had shared remixes and stages with Hey Champ for years. A lineup complete, the band born of whispers came to light. And now their 5-track debut EP Calling Out is too.
"There's something special, blissful and, yes, melancholic about Santos' voice. Maybe even haunting. "Calling Out" sounds immediately familiar, as if it was first born in the ‘80s but received minor contemporary flourishes like cleaner synths, eerie samples and a down-tempo Balearic groove." - Chicago Tribune