Indie Folk Duo Frances Luke Accord Drops Mellow Easy-Listener In New EP ‘Sunnyside’

A duo pushing the boundaries of folk music, Nicholas Gunty and Brian Powers of Frances Luke Accord create a soft indie-folk sound that gestures to a timelessness as well, honoring Simon and Garfunkel while stepping into the worlds of Bon Iver and Jose Gonzalez. NPR put it as, “the definition of lean-in music”. 

Raised in South Bend, Indiana, the two met while attending the University of Notre Dame. Releasing their first singer-songwriter album in 2012, Kandote, was an intercultural collaboration with the Barefoot Truth Children’s Choir in Uganda, and the non-profit project still supports the choir to this day. The soothing vocals roll over the calming melodies that portray the elements of nature. 

After moving to Chicago in 2013, two more EP’s were released as they focused on their songwriting. Queen for Me is a five-song collection of folk tunes, with “Over Your Roof” instrumentally peaceful and lyrically abstract. The title track is a lively feel-good tune, bringing a fresh breeze to stagnant places. 

Fluke, their 2016 debut full-length album, opens up with “Who Do You Run From”, their crisp vocals being the forefront. Later in the project, the single “Nowhere To Be Found” touches on the wonder of how things could be different yet better, with the lyrics, “If I could keep a shooting star from falling alone/If I could kiss the sunrise, each time around/then baby I’ll be nowhere to be found”. The philosophically rich album soon led the duo to their first national tour along with Darlingside, Anaïs Mitchell, and The Ballroom Thieves.

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The duo just released their newest EP in Sunnyside, offering listeners insight as to what the duo was working on behind the scenes during quarantine. Featuring contributions from Don Mitchell (production), Chris Dupont (electric guitar), Luke Jackson (drums), and Katie Van Dusen (violin), the four folk tunes take on a simpler form of country, bringing back memories of the golden days. The title track captures the optimism that offers comfort to those finding themselves in a storm, singing, “Someday we will see how bright sunlight can be”.

The latest single off of the project, “Maria”, pronounces the love and hope they find in a girl, not wanting her to leave them behind. “If the sun goes dark someday, all the stars fall out from space/O, solace me, my enlightened one, with no stars and with no sun”. Those lyrics of the soft and gentle love song are of one searching for a little light in their life, as the acoustics remind you of a place you call home.

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