The Hanks
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The Hanks

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"June 21st"

How many times as a musician have you just said "screw it, let's all quit our jobs and totally pursue our musical career with a nationwide tour". It's a lot easier said than done that's for sure, but that's exactly what The Hanks have recently done. The four members, Josh Grondin (lead vocals, guitar), Bryan Harris(bass/backup vocals), Philip Katz (keys, horns, percussion and backup vocals) and Shane May(drums) quit their day jobs, bought the equipment they needed, packed their bags and hit the road doing their first ever nationwide tour in support of their debut album "Your New Attraction" recorded on Caffeine Teen Records.
"Your New Attraction" is a kick ass album. The Hanks leave you wanting more with each track. They open up the album with "The Only Real Thing" a track with an upbeat punk rock sound which talks about rejection, overcoming it and never giving up. With powerful lines like; "Never doubt what you feel, 'cause that's the only thing real". Moving through tracks two and three The Hanks slow it down a bit and show their ability to mix up their sound and direction. There are a couple of really great tracks that stand out to me and I can't seem to get enough of; track number four "Once Again" and track number six "Dirty Lens", which sounds similar to something by "Jimmy Eat World" . Closing the album with track number eleven "I Know", an appropriately placed song with a much slower tempo to calm you down and allow you to catch your breath and not have a heart attack from all the screaming and singing along to the previous tracks. Just like their debut release, The Hanks are "Your New Attraction". A very solid album with enough potential to carry them to the next level.
To purchase their album or see their nationwide tour dates you can visit their website at

- Rob Jenkins / June 21st
- Real Music Review

"March 11"

In a world of singers who can’t sing, and musicians who couldn’t tell you what a treble clef is to save their life, The Hanks step up to redeem the rock scene. I’m not saying that they are rock saviors or anything, but they are definitely disciples of rock. Their first release into the world, Your New Attraction is everything a CD should be; good quality tunes, good album art, and my favorite in the age of screams and growls, lyrics. Oh how I love knowing I’m not singing the wrong lyrics.

As for the description of The Hanks, here goes: four guys who like to rock. There’s no anger, no whining, just rock and laughs. No emo, screamo, hardcore, pick-a-core, just rock. Good ol’ rock, how I’ve missed you. When people are obviously having fun with something, it comes through in the quality, and The Hanks are high quality. As for the songs themselves, while there are slower songs, the boys still rock. Hell, Ozzy had slow songs, and you cannot tell me that he doesn’t rock. For the most part, however, the Hanks blast through their songs. Dirty Lens stands out as a delightful little gem, with a little ska riff and a groovy bass line that merge in the chorus to clear any doubt away that this is rock music. Turnaround also adds to the distorted guitar rock of the group, while Evaporate and Bruised fill the slow song quota.

Not limiting themselves to any particular genre, or even instruments for that matter, the band does not seem to limit themselves in anything. Singer Josh Grondin is not only a guitarist, he is the guitarist, not one of those singers who plays a power chord through the chorus and uses the guitar to look cool. Then there’s Mr. Phillip Katz, instrumentalist extraordinaire. This guy plays keyboards, shakers, bells and several horns. Finishing off the rhythm section is Bryan Harris on bass, and Shane Mayo, beatkeeper. These four may have a long career in front of them, I for one hope so.

Jonathan Yost
Music Editor
- WAXX Magazine

"March 1"

The Hanks - Your New Attraction
By Chris Stum

The windows in my car are down; I’ve got the stereo cranked. The sound coming from my CD player is energetic and
bright but still quite punk. I head out onto the interstate and hit about 85 MPH......wait, back to reality. I actually live in
Pennsylvania, own a Mazda Protege (non convertible) and there is snow on the ground. I can only wish for warmer
weather and, well...more money for that convertible.
What is a reality though is the band that I was listening to during my brief escape from life. In very real life the band is
called The Hanks. If you would have told me about the music from The Hanks a few weeks ago, I would have said
"You’re dreaming, I haven’t heard a good band crossover into (as I like to say) "good time punk rock" in quite sometime."
Truth be told, many bands today always have some sort of sad, depressing element in their music, but this band from
Los Angeles combines driving rhythms, killer guitars and great vocals to produce a sound which is certainly music to my
ears. If you haven’t heard of them yet, don’t worry, I’m here to educate you.
The debut album from The Hanks entitled "Your New Attraction" will be available March 8th on Caffeine Teen Records.
Energy, energy, energy, and more energy is one of the phrases that come to mind when describing The Hanks music.
The album begins with an upbeat punk rocker entitled "The Only Thing Real". A perfect opener for this album, "The Only
Thing Real" rolls The Hanks right out of the gate, all pistons firing. The vocals of Josh Grondin (Lead Vocals/Guitar) grab
your attention like an unclaimed Ben Franklin at your feet with lines like "You never wanted to be just another failure."
and "Never doubt what you feel, cause that’s the only thing that is real." The album continues on with a few mid-tempo
numbers named "Sometimes" and "Bruised", both songs showcasing sonic musical soundscapes and quickly shifting
gears. A song that really caught my ear was one called "Once Again." Although the feel of "Once Again" may be a little
darker than it’s predecessors, it still continues to define the band and help create a strong start to the album.
The vibe that The Hanks provide could be considered as raw pop punk, high on caffeine but all the while providing great
songs that never get off track.
The vocals of Josh Grondin are sometimes emo, sometimes just straight rock, but most of all, Grondin captures the
emotional energy in each song and portrays it perfectly. Along with lead vocal duties, Grondin provides great guitar work
that lies in each song. The song entitled "Evaporate" is a great example of the sounds that The Hanks are capable of.
"Evaporate" may be one of the slower and songs on the album, but the post chorus offers up delayed guitar lines and
soft muted riffs during the songs verse. "Evaporate" has the texture of maybe the Psychedelic Furs or U2 but has
enough modern edge to make the song a standout of the album. The song "Bruised" is along these same lines, great
textures and sounds in true Radiohead style, but the chorus is "chunked" up with drummer Shane Mayo and bassist
Bryan Harris adding a heavier, rhythmic backbone.
Along with "Evaporate" the band does slow things down a little more, but still manages to maintain a fresh outlook with
every song. The song "I Know" could be considered one of the few ballads on the album, but it also showcases the
acoustic side of the band in fine fashion. I can’t forget about the horns in "Mixtape" and "The Only Thing Real" provided
by Philip Katz. Just another element in the music of The Hanks that truly sets them apart from the rest.
Songs such as "Throwaway" and "Turn Around" wrap up the sound of The Hanks with more catchy lyrics, and guitar riffs
giving every listener a reason to come back for more. It is tough to have a favorite song on an album which is filled up
with great songwriting elements and just good time punk music. The songs that The Hanks have produced will stay with
you for a long time and provide soundtracks to many moments in your life.
The Hanks are just around the corner; this is one attraction on its way up. is part of the network. - PonkMo

"The Hanks"

The Hanks are exhilarating, high-energy hard rock with some vague ska undertones. The music bowls along at intense speed with a driving rhythm, pounding your skull in a stream of melancholy thoughts. It's at times floating, at times roaring rock, riding on Josh's drifty voice and the intricate riffs, alternatingly drifing then driving- the Hanks are amazing. The music has struck the the dividing line between "sad, lovelorn drifty slow rock" and "intense, amazing, mind-blowing hard rock" perfectly and they show off their skills with incredible effect...
Verdict: They're my new favorite band. Enough said. - Kaleidoscopic Rock Zine

"February 14"

When I opened the booklet for this CD, I was amazed at how far the band took the geek-factor concept. There were formulas, mathematical equations and, to top it off, a picture of the band in white lab coats (pocket protectors included). Creativity aside, The Hanks actually made a decent album that without a doubt works at making their pain felt. "Bruised" makes you wish you had given the guy that played Magic and Pokemon in the lunchroom a second glance. This album offers a range of instruments from the Spanish guitar in "Dirty Lens" to occasional horn in "Throwaway." All in all this CD is a lot of fun. So, with that said, meatheads, be leery of your social status, because geek is undeniably in. - Portfolio Weekly

"April 30"

L.A. rock band The Hanks likes to run around onstage.

"For sure," said lead singer Josh Grondin. But don't mistake him for a surfer dude. You'll find him and his three band mates indoors more, listening to and playing music.

Josh's deep voice easily catches your attention with a sense of suspense. The band's instrumentals are strong. In addition to guitar, bass and drums, they've got a keyboardist, Philip Katz, who switches with trombone.

"We're a rock band that tries to incorporate as many influences as possible," said Josh. "Hopefully, we make something that sounds fresh. We experiment with textures. We're high energy, very melody driven."

Josh, 23, writes all the lyrics (a lot about relationships). Yeah, he's young. At Dewey, you'll get to hear "Once Again," which is on the band's just-released album, "Your New Attraction."

"Your attitude's brand new, it seems that you're back into me again / though I'm having trouble even standing here being your friend / Am I just supposed to wipe clean all the messes of our past, / and forget the year I gave to you that you didn't let last?" - Dewey Beach Popfest

"February 26"

The Hanks are a former ska band out of California who turned alternative with the release of their new album, " Your New Attraction." Their ska is great, incorporating strong punk with smooth horn styling's while their alternative does not lose the edge the ska had. Their alternative still has undertones of ska to keep earlier fans, and 90's fans, happy. "Your New Attraction" is a great example of how a band can change genres and do it right. "Once Again" and "Sometimes" are great tracks from their new album. "Guilty" is one of their best ska songs. - Below the Radar Bands

"THE HANKS Brewing Brouhahas (and La-di-Dahs)"

It is Friday night at the Roxy in Hollywood, and four boys in their 20s take to the stage to kick off the evening’s show. In apathetic fashion, two of them strap on guitars, another strolls to the mic, and a fourth huddles in his corner with a mélange of music-making gadgets (namely a keyboard, bells and a trombone).

In the span of a millisecond, they begin to play. What emanates is a sea of frenetic energy: fast-driving drum beats, dense guitars. Topping all these aural layers are vocals that oscillate between deep-pitched groveling and euphoric, melodious crooning, culminating into a beautiful mess of atmospheric pop rock. After the song ends, the lead singer, with a few drops of sweat drizzling from his forehead, leans into the microphone and says, "Hi. We’re The Hanks."

As serious rockers they may be, this L.A.-based foursome has a self-deprecating humor that never lets up.

"We picked up Phil from the street corner," says Josh Grondin, the mousy brown-haired lead singer, when asked how they formed. "Yeah, we were rescuing him from his sex addiction," chimes in Shane Mayo who claims to have played the drums since "dirt was invented."

Joking aside, the formation of The Hanks actually began five years ago at a small boarding school in Sheridan, Ore., where Grondin and Bryan Harris, the bassist, first met. They began playing together out of a shared love of music and what they labeled as "butt rock" – also known as any music that deals with glamour and big hair.

"We went to such a small school that we didn’t have any other choice," Grondin chuckles. "There were basically two bassists in the entire school, and Brian was the better one."

The pair set out to pursue their musical passions by moving to Los Angeles and attending the esteemed Musician’s Institute in Hollywood. It was in a music store where they met Mayo.

Hailing from Chicago, Mayo had an inclination toward old school rap and was armed with mad drummer skills. In need of a horn player, they posted up flyers around the UCLA campus and Philip Katz, a music student studying the trombone, answered the call.

Having played at various venues and working on recordings (and re-recordings) of demos for the past three and a half years, the foursome is preparing for the release of their debut album, Your New Attraction, slated for release in March on indie label Caffeine Teen. The album will include tracks such as "Once Again," a driving, catchy lament on an old flame that yearns to be re-ignited.

"Whatever music we make, we just want it to have an emotional impact on people," reveals Harris.

The Hanks’ incessant touring has not gone without reward, gracing the stage last summer at the New Orleans Voodoo Experience and sharing a bill with the Pixies, Sonic Youth and The Killers. The Deep South was also where The Hanks received their first taste of airplay at the local Louisiana rock station. Up against Lostprophets as their challenger in the weekly contest entitled "Give them the Finger," The Hanks tasted victory.

"We were screaming like little girls, ‘Oh my God, it’s our song!" recalls Katz. "But then we lost the next week."

During the remainder of The Hanks’ set that evening, a teen awash in the crowd belts out, "I love you Bryan!" Grondin responds, "Bryan loves himself too. He even made a shirt with his face on it!" Bryan Harris then thrusts both arms in the air as in proper stance to receive a sea of adoration from the crowd. With this mixture of harmless joviality and unique sound, Harris’ gesture may not be wholly unjustified.

Your New Attraction is set for release in January 2007. For more information, visit
- Campus Circle


"Your New Attraction" 3/06
"Distance" 3/08

"Once Again" radio airplay



The Hanks are the epitome of the do-it-yourself work ethic. By fusing technical know-how with artistic skill and several years of unassisted endeavors, the Los Angeles-based indie-rock foursome — vocalist/guitarist Josh Grondin, bassist Bryan Harris, drummer Shane Mayo and keyboardist/horn player Philip Katz — has built an established name, refined its sound and accrued a loyal fanbase with nothing more than some time, touring miles and a few excellent releases.

Yet, after a number of years as a self-backed entity, The Hanks is finally getting its long-awaited due, with the support of upstart record label Cobra Music and the re-release of its full-length debut, Your New Attraction. For an act that began by selling burned copies of its recordings to its high school peers, having its album distributed on a national level is a much-needed step forward.

Founded by Grondin and Harris, The Hanks (named from an off-the-cuff Tom Hanks reference by a former band member) began while the pair attended a rural Oregon boarding school. NorCal native Harris and the East Coast-raised Grondin assembled material for their first release and recorded the decidedly crude Opener EP in their dorm rooms. With the local success of Opener, The Hanks recorded its second release, Moving On at a proper studio in Northern California.

In the summer of 2000, Harris and Grondin moved south to attend classes at a Los Angeles music school. Less than a year later, the pair joined forces with Mayo and Katz, putting The Hanks back in gear. With an established line-up in place, The Hanks raised funds from wherever they could and began tracking their debut full-length album in 2003.

Composed of material written over the course of their post-high school years, and influenced by the likes of Lagwagon, Mad Caddies, Weezer, The Cars, Paul Simon and Jimmy Eat World, the album, Your New Attraction, found The Hanks writing melodic rock that appealed to a broad range of audiences.

Upon finalizing Your New Attraction in March 2005, The Hanks became a full-time band, immediately hitting the road with local friends Darci Cash on a number of regional and national excursions – all self-booked by members of both bands. Dubbing the outings “Tour de Force,” The Hanks spent several months on the road. “We just basically went out and busted our asses, selling CDs,” says Harris.
During one of its outings in March 2006, The Hanks had the opportunity to perform at a South by Southwest showcase in Austin, Texas. Grasping the attention of Cobra Music, the act joined the label and opted to re-release Your New Attraction via Cobra Music (the label’s first release). With the deal came the distribution the band so eagerly sought. “People can go get our record in the stores if they want,” says Harris. “Before they had to either order it online or only get it at the shows.”

The Hanks are continuing to take their music directly to the people with constant tours and a high energy live show. “We’ve just been running parallel to everyone else,” says Harris. “We’ve been doing our own thing, but it’s cool, because the fanbase that we have is really our own fanbase. The kids that are coming to our shows are really coming to see us.”