Birthed in Philadelphia and based in Los Angeles, Man Man is the brainchild of Ryan Kattner, aka Honus Honus, the pianist/lead vocalist/songwriter extraordinaire whose Art Folk/Rock conglomeration answers the unasked question: “What would result from a songwriting round that featured Tom Waits, Captain Beefheart, Jimbo Mathus, Gogol Bordello’s Eugene Hutz and Low Cut Connie’s Adam Weiner?” The spectacularly weird and wonderful response is “The kitchen sink orchestra that plays bohemian Indie Rock for a carousel that features animatronics designed by Salvador Dali and Stan Winston.”
Honus began conducting Man Man as a pinwheeling and wildly eclectic Art Rock collective in 2003, with no intention of pursuing a career in music and believing that the first Man Man album, 2004’s The Man in a Blue Turban with a Face, would likely be the last. Somehow convinced to do a sophomore album, Honus and Man Man concocted Six Demon Bag, a better-produced version of its predecessor’s manic experimentalism and the band’s official launching pad. The album led to a profile-raising tour opening for Modest Mouse and a contract with Epitaph imprint Anti- Records.
Since then, Man Man has released three albums for the label, including their most recent full-length, 2013’s On Oni Pond. While there’s been a six-year lull for Man Man, Honus has remained busy in that span, recording his solo debut Use Your Delusion in 2016 and his second album with Indie Rock supergroup Mister Heavenly in 2017. Back in August, Honus dropped a tantalizing hint that a new Man Man album might be on the way in the form of a Sub Pop Records Singles Club contribution featuring the songs “Beached” and “Witch.”
Get your tribal face paint mixed and design your best battle visage; Man Man has returned to the road and prisoners will not be taken.
Honus Honus and Co. are slated to rock Top Cat's on Sunday, Oct. 6 with guests GRLwood and Go Go Buffalo. Tickets/more show info: topcatscincy.com.