Harmonica Dunn Presents:
Jennifer Westwood & The Handsome Devils
2447 N. Halsted
Chicago, IL, 60614
Doors 8:00 PM / Show 8:30 PM
This event is 21 and over
Jennifer Westwood & The Handsome Devils
Jennifer Westwood and the Handsome Devils sound like they made a serendipitous wrong turn on their way to the juke joint and wound up in a countrypolitan cathedral instead. It's beautiful and ever so haunting. Westwood's voice is sexy and strong as it applies the seduction over the band's groove and thoughtful reserve…..And the Handsome Devils lay it down as pretty as their golden haired captain. It's honky-tonk with a little less honky. It's atmospheric yet immediate and approachable. It packs a wallop” http://www.rochestercitynewspaper.com/rochester/motor-city-country/Content?oid=2564054
At the heart of the band is Jennifer Westwood and guitarist Dylan Dunbar, who share an affection for gospel, Texas blues, Stax, and Muscle Shoals era artists. Jennifer cut her teeth on gospel in Detroit before hitting the gritty local bars that set her career in motion; along the way adding several Detroit Music Awards to her credit, including one for work with Sponge (Sony) frontman Vin Dombroski on a traditional country recording, Lalar V. Dylan Dunbar spent his early years as a kid, refining his chops in local blues joints, moving on to perform with W.C. Handy award winners such as Chef Chris and Johnny "Yard Dog" Jones, as well as country artist Whitey Morgan. His dynamic playing style is a compliment to Jennifer's broad vocal range and unique sound that lands somewhere between Linda Ronstadt and Big Mama Thorton.
The last couple years have seen the band touring the country up to 200 days year growing a family of fans from New York to West Texas. They’ve been on bills with acts such as Hayes Carll, Paul Thorn, Dale Watson, Jason Eady, Delbert McClinton, Shooter Jennings and have performed alongside Patti Smith; grateful for every opportunity the road has afforded them.
The once industrial punk Chicago band Razorhouse (www.intherazorhouse.com) has transformed into a post -modern eclectic music experience that is part art house project, part singer-songwriter louche’ combined with raunchy ear candy guitar and percussion. The first single "Dedicated Love” (to be released August 20, 2013 on HeatShield Records) covers a broad musical palate as frontman/songwriter Mark Panick’s voice growls and slithers in a gritty sexual exploration of addiction over a swanky Ronson-esque arrangement.
Razorhouse takes its name from the Mayan spiritual teachings in the Popul Vuh and have recorded a series of EPs, each referred to as a Codex - the term for a section of the Mayan writings. The first EP release titled Codex Jun is a raucous mixture of biting tones and cinematic textures from start to finish. In discussing how he chose the songs for Codex Jun and the subsequent releases, Panick said ”You start encoding your daydreams and ideas into music and like ill tempered children they bully each other into a pecking order. So the songs decide for themselves in the end. The separate codices worked for me in that those songs were differing views/visions. I feel this format works more with how people consume music outside the traditional album format, which is long since dead in my opinion”.
Recorded over the course of 2012 & 2013, the songs that form each Codex took shape in early sessions with Panick and HeatShield Records owner & producer Danny McGuinness. According to McGuinness, "Mark and I got together for lunch after having lost touch for a few years. He let me hear some of his new material and I was blown away. He had found this musical space that was all his own and I wanted to be a part of bringing that to the studio and making him part of this new record label."
The pair quickly recruited their mutual friend Grammy nominated engineer & producer Howie Beno to co-produce the songs that make up Codex Jun and its subsequent release. Both Panick and his erstwhile production team began bringing in a wrecking crew of players to the studio in order to flesh out the wealth of material they had accumulated. While earlier incarnations of Razorhouse included members of RevCo, KMFDM, and Sister Machine Gun, this latest foray kept the lineup rotating to get the performances just so in his musical vision. On tour, Panick will be recruiting players for an upcoming live Razorhouse stint.
When asked whether it’s a band in the classic sense, Panick said “I see the idea behind Razorhouse as a nomadic tribe with the music being the ministry of propaganda. I've been doing the same thing forever. I'm building forts with other fun kids.”
A visual and performance artist as well as musician, Panick is best known for his work with seminal underground bands The Bonemen of Barumba and Chac Mool as well as his work with Revolting Cocks and Ministry. Currently working on a collection of kinetic sculptures while rehearsing for the upcoming tour, Panick tries to balance his new interest in yoga with occasional bouts of whiskey induced arguments with the local ice cream man over his poor choice of tape loop.
Razorhouse will release the six-song Codex Jun this September 10th, 2013 via digital download and key-branded jump drive.