Guam’s, The John Dank Show drops new single, “No Breaks” today

Guam’s, The John Dank Show drops new single, “No Breaks” today

Music lovers have something to look forward to on Valentine’s day this year! A fresh, new cut from The John Dank Show drops February 14th titled “No Breaks”. This full-bodied reggae-rock offering from the island of Guam comes complete with an arrow from cupid; you’ll instantly fall in love with everything about this song!

The John Dank Show is a band of friends hailing from the Micronesian island of Guam, floating around in the Western Pacific. The roster includes Francis McJohn on vocals and rhythm guitar, John Tyquiengco with lead guitar and vocals, Danton Cruz controlling the bassline, Paolo Cruz on drums and Zach Quinata with vocals and keys. They’ve been pumping out soothing, sultry island vibes, tangled up with shredding rock-god-guitar-riffs in a no-genres-quest to fuse new sounds since 2013. Exactly a decade later, they’ve done it again with their first single of the new year, “No Breaks”.  

The song introduces itself with a familiar dance between a hi-hat and melodic strings, followed by that oh so recognizable reggae bounce. The lead guitar kicks in shortly and just oozes an “Expendables” vibe that Geoff Weers would be proud of, framing the scene for the first verse. The guys lyrically illustrate a story of slowing down, taking aim and seeing things through at a steady pace; not letting what drives you become your demise. I sense a message of staying hungry and pursuing goals while not letting it take an unhealthy control of your life – enjoying the journey as well as the destination but staying on track. The single is powerful, in sound and suggestion. Crank this one up the next time you’re out enjoying the sun with friends, driving with the windows down or just whenever you need a little feel-good boost! 

I caught up with The John Dank Show and asked a few questions about the band and the new release:

Looks like The John Dank Show has been jamming for a while now. Circa 2013, yeah? How did the band come into existence?

  • Yea! Roughly 10 years. So Danton (bassist) and I were in a cover band out of high school for about 5 years, and John (lead guitar/vocals) kinda came into the fold when Danton and I quit our former band to focus on writing. We promised ourselves to only play our first show when we had a catalog big enough to fill a set with our own stuff. The three of us wrote for about a year and a half, then we auditioned for drummers… All the while Danton’s little bro Paolo (our drummer) was playing video games right next to us. Haha. It was an inevitable fit. 

I see you guys hail from Guam, what’s the music scene like on the Micronesian island?

  • Guam is crazy loaded with talent! In every restaurant, every bar/live music venue, there’s usually a great band playing. The five of us (Zach on keys) are all from musical families, and we’re all from the southern part of the island. The island is flooded with bands everywhere but 7 years ago, the original music scene was on the come up. We were fortunate enough to get into the circuit locally within this time frame and helped push the idea of producing your own albums, and making your own music the focus. Now it’s everywhere, and we’re blessed to be at the forefront of it all as we tour the US yearly. 

Do all the band members reside in Guam full time?

  • We all do! It’s an extreme disadvantage when we gotta fly out for tours, but it’s a huge advantage in terms of “sharpening the sword” and keeping the band tight. We have residencies around the capital of the island, Hagatna. 

I’m loving the layers of this track. You have an undeniable ability to mash and fuse genres together. Where does the inspiration come from to combine these different sounds?

  • Man, THANK YOU FOR NOTICING! Haha. It’s kinda been who we are all our lives. We all have different influences as individuals, but I (Frank) grew up with my dad being a pioneer in local music here as a transplant with his band Marianas Homegrown. I grew up on Loggins & Messina, Sublime, Pepper, James Taylor, and RHCP [laughs]. Danton and Paolo with influences in funk and alternative stuff, John and Zach with eclectic tastes in metal, Lo-fi, hip-hop and island music. And that’s just our individual tastes, as a band we’ve taken the genre-bending influences from bands like 311, Passafire, RX Bandits and others. We take pride in not being able to be “genre-ized” haha. It’s become our stamp, and we’re very proud that people still listen to us, even though it can kinda get confusing lol.

“No Breaks” seems like a self-declaration to take it all in while remembering the steering-wheel of life is in YOUR hands. Am I on the right track?

  • You probably hit that more spot-on than we could’ve ever done. That’s why you’re the professional! When bands trudge along and are on a steady incline (even though at a slower pace), it is important for us to remember that this is who we are. Compounding with a halt in live music because of covid, we knew that it’s what we were meant to do, and this song is a declaration to ourselves, and what music means to us. 
  • Johnny, here! It’s also got a get-off-your-ass kind of message. Whatever it is that gives you purpose and you can’t live without should be constantly worked at, even at slower paces, as long as there are “no breaks” in the momentum you’ve created. We are, in some sense, only alive for now, after all. 

I’m excited for the future of The John Dank Show, what can we expect in 2023?

  • After this single, we have a Side A- EP coming out in about a month and a half, and we’re stoked because it has some awesome features! We also kinda figured out who we are on a more concretely sonic level. We have some big shows coming up locally, one with Josh Heinrichs, and hopefully a national tour with some friends stateside in the late summer. Either way, we’re going to put our heads down and make more music, NO BREAKS!

Artist Links: Instagram | Facebook | Spotify | Website

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Disclaimer: All views presented in this album review are those of the reviewer and not necessarily those of Top Shelf Music.

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1 year ago

Spot on review of this addictive number. How it cleverly weaves between moods, messaging and genres makes repeat mode not so repetitive. Instant classic. Keep up the professional music making boys.