Rabbit Habits

It’s the feeling you get from smelling all that sulfur after shooting a Roman candle at your friend, but the only difference is you didn’t smell it; you heard it on the new Man Man album Rabbit Habits. The sound of the fireworks going off to the tune of Man Man couldn’t be more satisfying than actually shooting one off. Man Man is an experimental rock group, consisting of five members formally known as Honus Honus (Ryan Kattner), Pow Pow (Christopher Powell), Alejandro “Cougar” Borg (Russell Higbee), Sergei Sogay (Christopher Shar), and Chang Wang (Billy Dufala). The band originated in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania starting off as “Gamelon”, and “Magic Blood,” and finally settled as “Man Man” in 2003. “This is definitely our pop album,” said Honus Honus, lead singer of Man Man. Rabbit Habits was released on April 8th, and is filled to the brim with a list of percussion and many other instruments, as long as 10 man arms. Xylophones, pots, pans, fireworks, sousaphones, clavinet, microkorg, saxophone, guitar, drums, piano, jazz bass, the list goes on. All these instruments and members combined produce new and different beat. The first nine songs have a quick pace, with beautiful use of percussion instruments, telling many different stories. “The Ballad Of Butter Beans” is a perfect example of this. It starts out as a drum solo, from there the song just takes off with a quick pace xylophone and chanting. Ultimately building up to lyrical madness, leaving a happy glow over the body. The last four songs twang out of the quick pace set by the first half of the album. The lyrics deepen, giving the songs greater significance as a story, and capping off the album with a serious tone. “Poor Jackie” is one of these slower, deeper, gypsier songs. The beginning is very melodic and is a barrage of various instruments, and then Honus Honus comes in and starts to tell the story of Jackie. The song then transitions into a second part, in which is a chorus singing “I don’t see what everybody sees in your sexy body, all I see is a shallow grave, trapped inside a pretty face,” all accompanied by some beautiful piano and guitar. From here, the song seems to trudge on like a funeral precession, giving the story grit you can almost feel. To top off this masterpiece the song ends on the tune of “There Ain’t No God Here.” This by far is one of the better songs on the album. With a slight new swing on things this album definitely sets itself apart from “Six Demon Bag”, and “The Man In a Blue Turban With a Face.” But with Man Man change is a good thing, and the album still stays true to its Manly ways. Certain songs on the album like “Rabbit Habits” “Poor Jackie” “Top Drawer” and “Whalebones” can still be described as Gypsyish Viking music. Along with the fact that all the members still have a scraggly look to them, and love to play with music, making it a new and exciting experience for your ears. Looking to the future, Man Man has an EP coming out this Spring, titled “7-inch”. The EP being created so soon after the release of the new album is due to the fact that with “Rabbit Habits,” they had enough material for a double album. But keep in mind, these ain’t no love songs.