Hans Frank feeds off criticism, crafting it into art.
Take his band Glambilly. A sour member of the audience first hurled the term at Frank back when he was fronting his group Hans Frank and The Auslanders (“People thought I was from Germany and it was a mouthful,” he said recently. He was in the market for an easier name.) Prior to the Auslanders, Frank had led the successful country band 10 City Run, which earned a spot on the Grand Ole Opry at one point. But Frank grew tired of country, and wanted to pick up the pace a bit.
So consider that foul quip Frank’s Led Zeppelin moment. If you recall, rock legend holds that Keith Moon once said that Jimmy Page’s new band would crash like “a lead balloon.” It seems like the gods of music take care of those who can not only roll with the punches, but turn them into art. And Glambilly, formed in 2007, does just that — their potent mix of rockabilly and glam rock hits you right in the face.
“If I was going to a desert island and I had to take two albums with me, I would take Chuck Berry’s The Great Twenty-Eight and Never Mind the Bollocks by the Sex Pistols,” says Frank. This combination aptly describes the contents of Glambilly’s third album White BBQ Sauce (see review on page 52). The album consists of nine new originals and two songs originally performed by 10 City Run (“City of Angels” and “Memories”). Frank wanted to re-record these two songs because he felt that they never reached their full potential under the constraints of Universal South Records, 10 City Run’s label. The band recorded the album live in the studio to capture the songs’ raw energy and, though it leans more towards the “glam” side, as Frank describes, the early roots and rock influences are very much present. Punk riffs are heard alongside country licks, and self-deprecating lyrics continue even between the songs with references to pretty women and the South. The fusion of such seemingly disparate styles of music proves that roots rock and glam rock are actually not that dissimilar. “It’s just rock ’n’ roll. It may have a little bit more of an attitude or be dressed up more, but to me it’s all just rock ’n’ roll,” says Frank.
After the departure of several band members and the death of the original drummer, Glambilly’s lineup has been consistent for the past two years, with Frank on vocals, bass, and keyboards; Tony Gloria on drums and percussion; and “Dangerous” Danny Aaron, originally of Dangerous Toys, on guitar. “When I left my previous band, it took awhile at first to figure out what I wanted to do, then secondly to do it, and then third to get to a place where everything was in the pocket. That is where we are now,” said Frank. “Now the thing to do is go out, tour, and give the record a chance.”
Live and on stage is where Glambilly feels most liberated.
“We try to get to a place where we are lost in the fervor, caught up in the music, and playing at a level where you are not really aware of anything,” Frank said. “A frenzied state. Live is really the only time I can get there.”
Fortunately for Glambilly, there is now no need to keep searching for the best foundation from which to reach this “frenzied state.” White BBQ Sauce is that magic ingredient. •
GlamFest (Glambilly’s White BBQ Sauce release party) feat. Gay Sportscasters and Chela Thomas (firebreather)
9pm Friday, August 19
116 W Mitchell