Local Wire

Man Man @ The Clubhouse Music Venue

There isn't much demand these days for films about train-hopping hobos set in the '30s, but if there were, no one other than Man Man could supply the soundtrack. The Philadelphia quintet combines the practice of using a wide variety of instruments, including piano, guitar, pots, pans, and fireworks, and the gravelly voice of lead singer Honus Honus (whose pipes make him a dead ringer for Tom Waits) to help cement that old-timey feel — so much so that the band's last record, Rabbit Habits, feels somehow recorded in the '30s and transported in time to the present day. "The Ballad of Butter Beans," for example, could be a perfect fit as an accompaniment for a silent Charlie Chaplin film, whereas "Big Trouble" would seem right at home as the soundtrack to a sultry burlesque show. Man Man's live shows have earned the band quite a reputation in recent years, and the group's latest record, Life Fantastic, is scheduled for release on the same day it plays in Tempe.

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Michael Escoto