13 Songs, 46 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Known for their deliriously wild live shows, this Philadelphia five-piece has slowly gained an audience appreciative of their particular brand of sonic adventure, and Rabbit Habits take a small (but necessary) step in a more accessible direction. Known prog rockers like Zappa and Beefheart are inevitable touchstones, but so are more current, globally influenced artists such as Devotchka and the now defunct 3 Mustaphas 3. Squalling sousaphone, inebriated marimbas, screeching guitars and two-stepping drums (and more drums) provide the color for vocalist Honus Honus’ Tom Wait-ish growl, the music swaggering from one soundtrack to another: a dingy, eastern European punk rock club (“Mister Jung,” “Easy Eats,” “Top Drawer”), a New Orleans funeral (“Big Trouble”), a late-night piano bar (“Doo Right”), a Raymond Scott cartoon score (“The Ballad of Butter Beans”). The zig-zagging post-rock of “Hurly Burly” and the multi-flavored mayhem of “Harpoon Fever” are fairly intoxicating, but the somber, poetic telling of “Poor Jackie” and “Whalebones” will sober you right up (there’s a novel in those songs, waiting to get out). Impressive, from both a musical and lyrical standpoint, and definitely new.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Known for their deliriously wild live shows, this Philadelphia five-piece has slowly gained an audience appreciative of their particular brand of sonic adventure, and Rabbit Habits take a small (but necessary) step in a more accessible direction. Known prog rockers like Zappa and Beefheart are inevitable touchstones, but so are more current, globally influenced artists such as Devotchka and the now defunct 3 Mustaphas 3. Squalling sousaphone, inebriated marimbas, screeching guitars and two-stepping drums (and more drums) provide the color for vocalist Honus Honus’ Tom Wait-ish growl, the music swaggering from one soundtrack to another: a dingy, eastern European punk rock club (“Mister Jung,” “Easy Eats,” “Top Drawer”), a New Orleans funeral (“Big Trouble”), a late-night piano bar (“Doo Right”), a Raymond Scott cartoon score (“The Ballad of Butter Beans”). The zig-zagging post-rock of “Hurly Burly” and the multi-flavored mayhem of “Harpoon Fever” are fairly intoxicating, but the somber, poetic telling of “Poor Jackie” and “Whalebones” will sober you right up (there’s a novel in those songs, waiting to get out). Impressive, from both a musical and lyrical standpoint, and definitely new.

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Ratings and Reviews

4.6 out of 5
88 Ratings

88 Ratings

Media Snob ,

Music to Sing, Dance, and Lose Your Mind to.

Honus Honus and crew have done it again.... actually, Rabbit Habits goes beyond both of their previous releases. It's polished madness. Nowhere else will you hear so much insanity on a record, and nothing else this year will sound as satisfying. Top Drawer and Poor Jackie are especially potent tracks. Now, somebody go catch these men and put them back in the asylum that they must have escaped from.

David W. ,

crazy good

listen, give it a little time, and realize how incredible it is

sqeeter ,

album of the year

or ever. the only thing that prevents this album from being the perfect album is that their previous album was.

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