Frankie Rex, an up-and-coming trans-masc singer and one-half of the alternative duo The FMs, has died. They were 37.
In a post to their official website as well as their social media accounts, bandmate Matte Namer revealed that Rex had died due to “an apparent fentanyl poisoning” while with their partner at their home in Ithaca, New York.
Namer also announced that Rex’s death would mark the end of The FMs for the time being, calling it “a beautiful dream we had to wake up from much too soon,” before adding that the duo had recorded at least two albums worth of material that they intended to share with the world at a later date. “We feel it is now our duty to share these artistic contributions with the world and find beautiful ways to honor Frankie’s memory,” they wrote.
Rex was well-known in the alternative-punk scene of New York City, having been a member of multiple rock outfits, including queer-punk trio BOYS and stoner punk band The Violent Orange throughout the late 2000s and early 2010s.
When they came together to form The FMs in 2017, Rex and Namer both saw their profiles begin to rise, performing inclusive, underground shows with Brooklyn underground collective Subvert, while also performing at EDM festivals and sharing their stages with members of Devo and The Village People. They released their debut album, Machinacene Epoch, in 2017.
The FMs saw their biggest year to date in 2021, when they released a string of singles that began to garner more public attention. Specifically with “Song X,” and its subsequent video directed by established music video auteur Matt Mahurin, the band saw their streams boost to new highs, surpassing 100,000 on Spotify.
In their memorial post, Namer praised Rex’s ability to include their fierce advocacy for trans and non-binary communities into their music, calling “Song X” an “anthem in support of the freedom to be gender fluid from the often not heard from perspective of a trans man. Rex’s lyrics were direct and fearless: ‘Gender roles are outdated yet it holds/ A pendulum over our throats/ Cutting our vocal chords/ As we shout.'”
Namer shared that while there will be no public services held for Rex, they intend to hold an “epic memorial concert this summer for them where we can raise money for memorials for them and causes Frankie would’ve cared about such as music and causes that support the trans-masc community.”
Read Namer’s full post on Rex’s death below: