Now in his 40s, Frank Turner has released what he calls his “most aggressive solo record in a short time.”
On many tracks, he summons a first-time listener with a full throttle punk million dead in his early years.
Yet FTHC, which means Frank Turner Hardcore, is also their most personal album.
It traces the distance after her struggles with anxiety, her brutal boarding school days, and her reconciliation with her transgender father.
In the twenty years of his career, he has gained the strength to bring these subjects to the surface and resolve them with unwavering honesty.
The cathartic nature of both his music and his lyrics is one of the most powerful statements of the year.
And thanks to Turner’s unparalleled expertise in hooks, he’s also an avid listener.
The album ends with a love letter to London, the city he left to start a new life on the Essex coast with longtime partner Jesse Gois, the musician and actress who married in 2019. Was
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When we talk about the three heavily connected songs that represent the emotional center of FTHC, Turner is the usual outspoken one: Father Les and Miranda.
For the first of these, he draws the lines: “I’m confused, I’m under pressure, I’m talking to myself again / I’m off, I’m left, I’m nervous about everything.”
Later, he reflects on how the therapy sessions helped him understand what was going on in his mind: “I’ve got a brand new name for an old, old friend.” “It’s a problem,” he said.
Turner tells me: “It was a big deal for me to name a feeling I have felt for most of my life.”
At the same time, the old and sensible singer has managed to draw a line under the excesses of his wild past.
“In the process of putting it in the mirror of my background, I have noticed that substance abuse was more of a symptom than a cause (anxiety),” he says.
Turner can take his struggle back to his prep school years, then his time in Eaton where he was a contemporary of Prince William.
At Fatherless, he tells the story of an eight-year-old being sent to a hostel and crying to sleep, “a story I haven’t told yet.”
“My education is an altruism in my throat and has always been,” he confirms. “I’ve been out of my way all my career not to talk about it in public.”
It’s lame to talk about school when you’re forty and I don’t want it to compliment me. However, over the years I’ve seen people argue about it as if I had a great time.
However, with new songs out there, she’s finally ready to open.
Turner emphasizes: “It’s lame to talk about school when you’re in your forties and I don’t want it to compliment me. However, over the years I’ve seen people argue about it like I had a great time.
“Of course we can talk about privileges but if we can get one thing, I didn’t enjoy it. It was very painful for me.
“And as it happens, I am totally opposed to private education from a political point of view.”
Turner can also detect persistent feelings of uneasiness in trouble with his father.
“We’ve had a very brutal relationship for many years and then there was no relationship,” he admits.
“I’ve found myself kicking at coffee tables because the TV commercials sell butter, highlighting the gentle attention, the gentle father-son relationship.”
When Turner’s father completed the transition from man to woman in 2015, communication between them was still non-existent.
It is the theme of Miranda, a song that highlights the isolation in relationships and mutual acceptance.
Turner admits he was shocked when he first heard of her life-changing decision.
Of course, my dad and I still have our problems. It’s a matter of parents and children, and in fact there has been a lot of muddy water under the bridge
“I had no idea, but I doubt I knew anyone ahead of time,” he says.
“Things were bad and they weren’t getting better. In fact, they’ve reached a point where they’re stuck under a rock.”
“But from where I was standing, Dad gave us a chance to break a vicious circle.”
And so Turner and Miranda got off to a fresh start. “It simply came to our notice then.
“Of course, my dad and I still have our problems. It’s a parent’s baby thing, and in fact, there’s a lot of dirty water under the bridge.”
“Now we are talking about her. We go for a walk and she comes to stay at my house.
These are new developments in my life and they can be nothing but positive.
“She came to a show in Bournemouth a few years ago and had a good time. She enjoyed the life and spirit of the after-party, which was kind of crazy for me but cool.
If Turner understands his father better, the same can be said of Miranda’s son.
He says: “When I was a kid, I made my own life and now he has the opportunity to do the same. It gives us something in common.
“Punk rock is about choosing who you want to be, but that was never my dad’s experience.
“She was raised in a very traditional family and I suspect she had some jealousy.”
Turner’s intense free spirit is the subject of the early hard-rocking blast non-service of his new album.
The title comes from the Latin language “I will not serve”, the best mantra for the singer who combines rock n roll with folk music and hooliganism.
With the big 4-0 coming last December, he says: “Old age is usually useless but one consolation is that you are more secure in who you are as an individual.
“At this point in my life, I’m old enough to be commanded by strangers on the Internet.”
Turner added: “As an artist, I have a responsibility to be honest with myself and to live up to my vision.” We live in a culture of digitalized mob politics. Just because it’s expressed in 140 characters these days doesn’t make it any less so. ”
Hearing believes in non-service and Turner remembers thinking it was in the initial reef file called “Side Project”.
But then I thought, ‘Well, why?’ This is my name on Tan. If I’m playing it, I can play any music I like.
Being in a 200-room room full of sweat and duct tape and urine. . . That was my natural environment.
“No one talks about the ‘difficult ninth album’ so I also had the freedom that comes from living this long. I still stand and, I like to think, still make valuable statements. I have been. “
Turner admits that FTHC had to stretch the strings of its voice a little more than it did when it had a passion for the evil of youth.
“Part of me wanted to make it clear that aging doesn’t mean slowing down,” he says.
As with many musicians, Turner’s life was affected by the code, the lack of live shows hurt the self-confessed Gig-Ahluk particularly hard.
The Gathering is his deviant anthem to get back on stage.
“It’s the closest thing to a lockdown song on the record,” he says.
Beware of being a “tiring” subject, he says, “it would be ridiculous not to have an epidemic because we are all going through it.”
Turner described his new song as a celebration of communion between the actor and the audience.
He considered it trivial and said: “Being in a 200-room room full of sweat and duct tape and urine. . . That was my natural environment.
“Now I can’t help but quote Johnny Mitchell when I say, ‘You don’t know what you have’ until it’s over. ‘
It is worth noting that Turner spent most of the early epidemics raising more than £ 260,000 through independent live music venues from home through live streams.
Then we talk about another FTHC compliment, A Wave Across A Bay.
It’s about the loss of a dear friend, Scott Hutchison, the frightened rabbit singer who took his own life in 2018.
“Scott was a good friend. There aren’t many people who do exactly what I do for a living and we had such a wonderful relationship,” says Turner.
“We talked on the phone at night, comparing notes on record labels or anything.
I had a bright dream about Scott shortly after his death in which I was shown some melody, a melody and some words with him.
“Obviously I knew Scott was having problems with his mental health and I was heartbroken when he died.
“He made a decision that I wish he wouldn’t, but it wasn’t a mistake. He knew what he was doing and a part of me wanted to accept and respect him.
Explaining the song itself, which has the sound of a deliberately frightened rabbit,
Turner says: “I had a very bright dream about Scott shortly after his death in which he showed me two melodies, one melody and two words.”
He turned the dream into a song, which was “a little scary” and “remembered” strangely to his much-missed friend.
“It’s a lament, it’s about suicide, but hopefully it’s a celebration of my friend.
“I wanted to take it out of my life with joy in my heart instead of resentment.”
The last song Turner and I get a closer look at is the FTHC Final, Farewell To My City, which celebrates the “7,300 days” spent in London.
He says: “I was a tough guy from London. I told everyone I knew I would never leave, including my wife who just said, ‘Oh for ***!’
“But things have changed. It’s partly getting old, partly lockdown.
When I look at the ocean, it does strange and positive things for my mental health.
“It was as if someone had got an ‘off’ switch for the city in March 2020.”
The song tells how 18-year-old Turner decided to stay in the capital. “But the 18-year-old was a fool! Don’t listen to this man, he’s a fool and, at the very least, a product of his time and place.”
“I know who I am these days. I don’t need to wake up in Camden Lock Inn until dawn.
“My God, I did my fair share of it, much more. Now I want to remember my past with love instead of remembering it.”
In 2022, Turner is enjoying life in coastal Essex, not far from his old London residences. “I can see the sea through my bedroom window,” he says.
“When my wife and I were looking for a home, my basic standard was to live by the sea, not five. Minutes away but right Are there!
“I can make a cup of coffee in my kitchen and drink it on the beach.
“When I look at the ocean, it does weird and positive things for my mental health.
“My shoulders drop three inches and I feel more relaxed.”
At age 40, it is clear that Frank Turner has finally found his feet. . . And he made an album to prove it.