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THE JANKS / Press

“Songwriting, musicianship, singing, and spirit: It's all here.”

“One of the best albums of the year”

“Their debut album “Hands of Time” is an eclectic, Indie-pop dream that defies convention and definition, but can hardly be considered displeasing considering the attention it is garnering.”

“Los Angeles roots rockers The Janks sound like a less whiny Neil Young backed by a bluegrass band whose members escaped the mountain country and made their way into the city sometime back. Band members Zack Zmed on vocals, guitar and keys, Garth Herberg on guitar and keys, and Dylan Zmed on vocals, guitar, keys and percussion, would go down well with the indie roots Pickathon crowd and by all accounts put on a compelling show.”

“So, we've established that The Janks have two feet in Americana, plus one hand in theatre. But there's more to "Hands of Time" than yee-hahs and safety-curtains - there is also a decent amount of sturdy song-writing”

“it's exciting to hear a group so deeply rooted in delivering a message, they don't care if it alienates the naysayers further. A logical step would be to put this on stage on Broadway as the world needs a good new rock musical… It wouldn't be a surprise if the show ran for years.”

“This really is a rollercoaster of an album, from its gritty southern rock to its slightly camp Queen-esque theatrics it grabs your attention from the outset and just doesn't let go. The guy who wrote the press release was right, this is a band to watch. They have it all, and in abundance. Watch your backs Kings Of Leon and anyone else for that matter, because your audience's expectations are about to be raised a lot higher.”

“The Janks’ elemental sound calls back to the late 60’s/early 70’s with Freddie Mercury-like vocals and campfire guitar tones. Album title-track “Hands Of Time” took us on a carousel ride of psychedelic emotion and circus adventure. The album as a whole begs us to get on our boots and pea coats and take a drive on an opened highway during this beautiful fall season as it plays as our soundtrack.”

“Hands Of Time the debut album from Los Angeles based band The Janks is ear catching and attention grabbing as well as intriguing and ultimately with a little extra attention for full appreciation very enjoyable. The band has been gaining strong acclaim and support for their varied and surprising sounds in their homeland, with the album hitting worldwide that eager following is sure to grow and quickly.”

“Like the mighty Wilco, clearly a great influence on the boys, The Janks are unafraid of experimenting with form and instrumentation and Hands Of Time becomes all the more visceral for this. If all cinema was like Hedwig and the Angry Inch (a film I recommend to you all) then this would be the most cinematic album on earth, it is by all accounts a modern day Rock opera, a concept album, and a pleasure to listen to. As not enough albums do these days, it tells a story.”

“The title track of Hands of Time by The Janks is a country-infused acoustic number, with ascending vocals and descending instrumentals that create an infectiously woozy effect. There are some lovely percussive delays on Billy the Kid that give this ballad a lackadaisical charm. Dead Man is a slow-burner that begins as a quiet confessional and escalates to a country rock anthem via military drums and exquisite melodies delivered by rough-hewn voices. That military snare is back for Demon Dance which has a stronger rock edge and some soaring electric guitar licks. If you like the alt-folk-country-rock of Band of Horses then you might find Hands of Time by The Janks a bit of a sizzler.”

“Los Angeles band The Janks have turned in a fine debut of Avett Brothers - tinged guitar pop full of sparkling melody and texture, from the shimmering Hands Of Time, through brutal Demon Dance to the stomp of Adolescence. An engaging winner!”

Alex Gold - The Word Magazine (UK)

“With their debut album, The Janks manage to give two different sides of the same coin. When you flip it, you might get heads, the softer, more upbeat side, full of beautiful harmonies and quiet acoustic guitars accompanied by playful, melodic piano parts. Flip it again and you might get tails, the side that comes at your ears like a bat out of hell, assaulting them with heavy beats, foreboding keys, and distressful lyrics. But no matter what side of the coin you get, you're glad that you get to keep it in your pocket. ”

“New American rock with some serious promise. There's flecks of White Stripes in here and heaps of talent. More please.”

“With a stellar debut album out right now, LA’s emotive folk outfit Their amazing clip for ‘Dead Man’ is sure to jank at anyone’s soul. We can’t recommend the album enough.”

“Los Angeles-based trio The Janks take the eternal verities of handmade folk rock whiskey harmonies, gnarly instruments, melodic reveries, a whiff of mountain air and add dashes of both good humour and spectacle. The world of The Janks is a big old rock and roll hoedown to which even the pastiest Brit is invited. You're in for ecstatic meditations in the mould of The Band, nifty little love songs, processional rock laments and all the joy a proper band who can actually play their instruments can afford. "The album is like musical theatre," confesses Dylan Zmed. "It's hard to predict what's going to happen next from song to song," adds brother Zack. The siblings and fellow Jank and best friend Garth Herbeg all sing and play guitar, contributing to a welcoming travelling-show vibe. On their Facebook page they list their interests as "Ancient Greece, verdant gardens, wine and women". Welcome, one and all, to Club Zmed.”

“I’ve heard that the measure of good art is how much the critics are inspired to write on it. If this is true, then The Jank’s debut album, The Hands Of Time, is a Picasso. Each track is elusive and manipulative. The title track, “Hands of time,” starts off the album with a carousel spinning around a Queen-like melody and pop-roots guitar before erupting into a psychedelic masterpiece. It exists on a plane all its own. Before you know it, Hands of Time, has sunk into you and you’re living in that magical space created by epic albums. That space where you go when Dark Side of The Moon is playing. “Demon Dance” is an all out attack on the world with a thumping beat, strung-out guitar and the tenacity of a cocaine binge. It’s like a Jack White stomping the shit off Exhile On Main Street‘s shoes. The tracks are well composed and deep sonically, nothing feels cliché. This is the most refreshing album to come out of the ever widening indie-scene in a while.”

“The band is at its best when offering acoustic-driven gems that call to mind the chilly cool of ‘70s AM radio. This includes the album-opening title cut, the first of several that will undoubtedly garner the Janks comparisons to Fleet Foxes and Akron/Family. Those comparisons are not wholly without merit—the beautifully realized vocal harmonies, soaring melodies and percussive elements that make you want to run for the forest, find a redwood and beat out a sweet rhythm, to say nothing of unexpected twists of mood, all those parts are there. But it’s also evident that Zack and Dylan Zmed as well as their pal Garth Herberg are not jumping on a bandwagon. It’s clear they’ve carved their own wheels and saddled their own horses, that they have a natural feel for music that itself has a natural feel akin to the work of the almighty Band and that they know their way around a plodding, mellowed-out number as well as their contemporaries.”

“The album opens with "Hands Of Time" and "Billy The Kid," singer Zack Zmed sounding not quite defeated but resigned to the fact that life is what life is and it ain't so great at the moment. "Dead Man," though, wipes the pallor away; the song's subject matter is obviously dark but Zmed and his brother; Dylan, mesh so flawlessly with bright harmony vocals that there's no way the song is going to come off depressed. A few cuts later the album takes an unexpected left turn as the band breaks loose with a big production; "Rat Racers", a perfectly-crafted, 70's-influenced mid tempo rocker with scathing guitar parts, great harmonies and an occasional reggae beat like a Supertramp / 10CC mash-up. The difference from the album's first few songs is so drastic that it's almost like there's a different group at work for this portion of the album, but that's all just part of getting to know The Janks; clearly there are far more layers here than can be appreciated with just a couple listens.”

“I don’t like the word “epic” — it’s worn and pedestrian and often misused in much the way “incredible” and “awesome” are. But it’s wrong to blame the words. People’s inability to use them correctly neuters them in times when it’s the exact word needed to convey the properties of a particular item. So this is my problem: Epic is the word to describe Hands of Time, the latest release by Los Angeles’ The Janks, but I fear using it makes me the boy who cried wolf. “Epic,” I can hear you say, “how many times have I heard that before? Is it awesome too?” Let me explain. Epics are long and grand and adventurous, primed to elicit certain glories of the past. Checking in at 14 songs in 53 minutes (long), Hands of Time evokes Queen, Steely Dan, Radiohead and The Veils (grand, past) while employing elements of Americana, classic rock, reggae and blues (adventurous). It’s unlike any musical stew I’ve ever heard and I’m not sure what I think —except I’m”

“The Janks are LA-based brothers Dylan and Zack Zmed with Garth Herberg, and they play an intriguing blend of old and new... for fans of some of Jack White's heavy stuff with the Raconteurs, there's common ground... check out the heavy start in opening track "Demon Dance", for example. But for all-out fans of 70's rock, there are points of reference, too. And songs like "Dead Man", with its mixture of Thom Yorke-style vocals, acoustic guitar and keyboards, are just good old-fashioned rock music. Like I said, intriguing.”

“The Janks, a vintage sounding indie rock trio from LA, recently landed our on radar. Founded by brothers Zack and Dylan Zmed, and friend Garth Herberg, the three often mix in style and instrument switches reminiscent of Ween, sans the irreverence. There have been many critic allusions towards them being, at times, almost like a cross between Radiohead and Queen but many of their upbeat songs sound as if Deep Purple and the Smashing Pumpkins had a bastard child trio. Ridiculous and almost parody-like comparisons aside, the Janks definitely have a style their own. The album is a great listen all the way through, and the flow created seamlessly ties together all of the different styles the band draws influence from. One of the highlights is the organ heavy "Rat Racers", which creates a wall of sound that surpasses some of the expectations of what a trio can produce. Occasionally poppy and upbeat, occasionally slow and deep, the album is a great listen, and warrants more than a few spins.”

“L.A. rockers the Janks have stuffed a whole lot of rock history into their sack full of tunes “Hands of Time” (out Sept. 27) — so much, in fact, their debut album threatens to split at the seams. Classic rock, sprawling glam-tinged arrangements, shimmering balladry, blues stomps, lovingly twangy folk: The Janks’ principals, brothers Zack and Dylan Zmed along with Garth Herberg, cover a lot of geography in their meditations on youth and its waning. “Dead Man,” with its Sin City chorus, may be what the Janks do best, but the blues blast “Demon Dance,” the classic rock freakout in “Rat Racers” and the slow burner “Billy the Kid” reveal an admirable range in a bunch of guys who aren’t afraid to experiment.”

“Radiohead, Queen, a bit of Hendrix and a heavy dose of 60s and 70s rock: The Janks are reminiscent of them all, yet able to remain a totally different breed of sound. With the release of their first full length album, Hands of Time, the Los Angeles born trio has crafted a brilliant debut, worthy of the comparisons they’ve garnered and then some. Each song is a masterpiece, full of nearly tangible emotion and stellar riffs that left me breathless…or perhaps it was more that I was emotional and the music was superb. In either case, the track “Dead Man” had me weeping in my seat, much to the discomfort of my fellow McDonald’s patrons, while “Drama King’s Ball,” had me stomping my feet. In short, The Janks are a joy to listen to, and while I have successfully sidestepped the frothing at the mouth insistence that you run and purchase this album immediately, I will insinuate that it is highly recommended you do.”

“The Janks are somewhat of a deceiving band. After listening to a couple of the band's gritty rock songs, a listener might think that the band members are three Nashville-bred men. Then, after moving on to another track and hearing the characteristics that made a band like Queen so likable, a listener might think that the band members are well over 40. However, none of that is true. In reality, the Janks is from Los Angeles and the band members are young and just well-versed in classic rock. The band is made up of brothers Zack and Dylan Zmed and friend Garth Herberg. Other than recalling Queen with their emotional wails and ostentatious precense, the members keep it fresh with harmonies, akin to folk contemporaries Fleet Foxes, and guitar work comparable to My Morning Jacket and the White Stripes. The themes range from folky campfire songs to booming orchestrated theatrics.”

“The band, composed of Zmed brothers Zack and Dylan with pal Garth Herberg, formed in 2009 and easily won converts with their visceral combination of theatrical vocal lines, dynamic melodies and an electrifying live performance. To date, the trio has remained an exclusively western U.S. phenomena with local critics describing the band’s sound as “eclectic and can be compared to the likes of great acts such as The White Stripes, The Shins and Queen” (In This Week) and “a show for real classic rock ‘n’ roll lovers. Think Led Zeppelin…” (Idaho Mountain Express) “Hands of Time is like musical theatre,” explains Dylan Zmed. Zach Zmed continues, “It’s hard to predict what’s going to happen next from song to song. There’s a duality to the record. The material spans night and day on a variety of levels. Some of the music and subject matter is really heavy and dark, while some of it is soft and light.”

“Los Angeles based group The Janks may be young, but their solid grasp of Americana Rock blended with 60's influenced Pop has garnered comparisons to artist's like Wilco and Neil Young.”

“The guys yield impressive results in the grand baroque pop tradition alongside groups such as Wilco and Fleet Foxes. They also manage tinges of California cowboy, the blues,'60s and '70s pop, and even take cues from veteran folk-rockers such as Neil Young.”