- John Sturdy
- Mannequin Men, six years before they broke up
Mannequin Men, the scrappy, beer-fueled underdogs of Chicago’s garage-rock scene, have officially decided to call it a day, after 11 years of making jangly, spirited punk rock. The band parts ways on good terms, according to drummer Seth Bohn: “Clean break. No bad blood at all. We just feel that the band has run its course.” Front man Kevin Kujawa says, “We just take it really seriously, and it got to a point where we just didn’t feel like we had a grip on what we wanted to do as much as we used to.” Ethan D’Ercole agreed: “For some of us, the plot was lost.”
The punk-rock stalwarts—who’ve released records on locals labels like Flameshovel, HoZac, and Addenda—had originally broken up in 2013 when bassist (and former Reader staff writer) Miles Raymer relocated to New York City. That didn’t last long, though; they resurfaced a few months later with plans for writing a new record and bringing former Chin Up Chin Up bass player Jesse Woghin on board to fill Raymer’s void. But you know what they say about all good things coming to an end . . .
As for the future, no set plans have been made, but all the members see themselves creating music together again at some point. “I can’t imagine that we won’t play together in some project together down the line,” says D’Ercole. According to Kujawa, “We will all be moving on and trying some new stuff and I think we are all excited to see where that goes.”
Mannequin Men, may you rest in peace. Let’s raise a beer or six to their memory.