WFPK Performance Studio Survives The Glasspack

By David Lilly

Primal and bloodthirsty it was. On July 9, The Glasspack became the first heavy-artillery unit to play WFPK's Live Lunch. Someone in the short pre-show line outside suggested the `Pack's "loud" reputation might have given some regulars the willies. Inside, minutes later, looking like Arlo Guthrie's illegitimate son, Dave Johnson and company hung out and geared up for high noon.

Guitarist/vocalist Johnson, bassist Todd Cook and drummer Brett Holsclaw all seemed unaffected by the few empty seats in the performance studio. After Scott Mullins introduced the band, Johnson announced, "This song goes out to the Second Street bridge," and the power trio plunged into the title song of the Bridgeburner CD. Thus setting the mood for an hour of 16-ton, bluesy and, at times, psychedelic rock.

They proceeded to barnstorm through several songs from Powderkeg and Bridgeburner, including "Mrs. Satan," "Whiskey House" and "Hairsoup." Just past the hour's halfway point, Johnson commented that they had one more song to play and that they'd try to make it last 20 minutes. "Jim Beam and Good Green" growled and barked through the amps, abruptly followed by, "Demolition Derby," as Johnson made quite good and varied use of his bag of electronic tricks combined with impressive guitar-playing for a guy who has shorter fingers than Rick Wakeman's (had to be there - and you can, aurally). After (and in stark contrast to) 10-plus minutes of guitar calisthenics, Johnson gingerly removed his ax and placed it on its stand, leaving Cook and Holsclaw to rumble on in a primal, hypnotic duet. Several minutes into that, Cook removed his bass and retired to the wall behind the seats to relax and enjoy the ensuing drum solo. Hundreds, perhaps thousands of drum beats later, Holsclaw had abandoned his sticks. He played barehanded as Mullins announced the show's outro to the drumbeats gradually fading into the end of the show.

Catch the audio portion at and Mr. Johnson et al at