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Man Man

The title of Man Man’s new album, Life Fantastic, is not exactly an example of truth in advertising, although you wouldn’t necessarily notice the dark undertones of the music right away after you hear the joyful sounds created by the Philly crew and producer Mike Mogis. Primary songwriter Ryan Kattner was going through a hellish period in his personal life as he started writing the songs on Life Fantastic a couple years ago—he was heartbroken from a breakup, several friends had died suddenly and the IRS was on his ass with unpaid bills. To recover, he put most of his belongings in storage and hit the road, visiting friends across the country. Eventually, he was able to start dealing with his feelings by writing, and when the rest of Man Man joined in to flesh out the new tunes, Kattner (aka “Honus Honus”) slowly worked his way out of his depression. “Making this album helped me work my way back,” Kattner says. “The sound really embodies the essence of this band, that balance between the ugly and the beautiful.” Listening to Life Fantastic, it’s hard to find much ugly, thanks to the band’s relentless instrumental creativity. Seeing them pull off the songs live should be a treat. Shilpa Ray and Her Happy Hookers open the show. In The Venue, 219 S. 600 West, 7 p.m., $15

Date: May 20, 2011
Time: 7 p.m.
Phone: 801-328-0255
Address: 579 W. 200 South, Salt Lake City, 84101
Where: In the Venue/Club Sound