Ithacans and Man Man fans alike came to The Haunt on Wednesday, January 29th, for what was no less than a spectacular show of music new and old. Though it may have been -5 degrees out, that did not stop people, including many local college kids, from coming down for a night of dancing, fun, and maybe even a little crowd surfing.
Xenia Rubinos of Brooklyn, kicked off the night with her very own creation of electronic rock fusion that served as a perfect set up for Man Man’s unique sound. Rubinos and drummer Marco Buccelli are unlike anything many have ever heard before. Their music is filled with constantly varying time signatures, contrasting chords, and vocals that can only be described as soulfullypunk. The set consisted of many songs from their 2013 album Magic Trix, including “When You Come” and “Help.” With the house completely full, the band ended with two unreleased songs, “Black Stars” and “Motorcycle Song”, and finally a crowd favorite, “Hair Receding.” Xenia Rubinos is quickly making a name for herself as she continues her countrywide tour with Man Man.
With the crowd primed and ready to go, Man Man took the stage for an epic journey through sound. As Honus Honus made his way to the microphone, wearing a glittered cape with the rest of the band in skeleton consumes, you could feel the crowd’s excitement brewing. Starting with a 2006 tune, “Feather”, Man Man got right to work. The band played a broad selection of their songs, from nearly all of their six albums, which allowed one to see the transformations Man Man has made over the past 10 years. Featuring many songs from their most recent album, On Oni Pond, the wild cast of musicians performed on instruments ranging from hubcaps to the flugelhorn. Xenia Rubinos added supporting vocals, joining the band for “Zebra” and “Pink Wonton”, which also included a fan onstage for a brief moment before he dove into a sea of hands. Man Man’s performance was a one of a kind event that should be a must see for everyone. Their outstanding musicianship, unpredictability, and Honus Honus’ extravagant costumes made it a party that will not soon be forgot. “El Azteca,” a number best described as a fight song, gave the crowd one last opportunity to dance their hearts out as Man Man’s stellar return to Ithaca concluded.