House Of Freaks

Members of House Of Freaks: Bryan Harvey, Johnny Hott
This performer (group) in the Internet: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/House_of_Freaks, http://www.allmusic.com/artist/house-of-freaks-mn0000827160

Discography of House Of Freaks:

# Release title Total tracks Type of release is Imprint date Label
1 Cakewalk 14 Audio 1991 Giant Records
2 Tantilla 30 Audio 2004 Rhino Handmade
3 Ring Of Fire / Shuffle Down To Woodbridge / Merry Christmas 3 Audio 1990
4 Bottom Of The Ocean 3 Audio 1987 Rhino Records (2)
5 40 Years 2 Audio 1988 Rhino Records (2)
6 Monkey On A Chain Gang 13 Audio 1988 Rhino Records (2)
7 Tantilla 12 Audio 1989 Rhino Records (2)
8 Monkey On A Chain Gang 14 Audio 1988 Rhino Records (2)
9 Tantilla 12 Audio 1989
10 Monkey On A Chain Gang 13 Audio 1988 Rhino Records (2)
11 Invisible Jewel 14 Audio 1994 Brake Out Records
12 Cakewalk 14 Audio 1991 Giant Records
13 Cakewalk 14 Audio 1991 Giant Records
14 All My Friends 6 Audio 1989 Rhino Records (2)
15 Sun Gone Down 2 Audio 1989 Rhino Records (2)
16 Monkey On A Chain Gang 13 Audio 1988 Demon Records
17 Bottom Of The Ocean 2 Audio 1987 Rhino Records (2)
18 All My Friends 6 Audio 1989 Rhino Records (2)
19 Sun Gone Down 2 Audio 1989 Sam Records (3)
20 Cakewalk 14 Audio 1991 Giant Records
21 Tantilla 12 Audio 1989 Virgin
22 Rocking Chair 3 Audio 1991 Giant Records
23 Tantilla 12 Audio 1989 Virgin
24 Tantilla 12 Audio 1989 Rhino Records (2)
25 40 Years 2 Audio 1988 Demon Records
26 Invisible Jewel 14 Audio 1994 Brake Out Records
27 Bottom Of The Ocean 2 Audio 1987 Rhino Records (2)
28 Monkey On A Chain Gang 26 Audio 2004 Rhino Handmade


House of Freaks was a two-man band formed in Richmond, Virginia in the mid 1980s. Bryan Harvey played guitar and sang, and Johnny Hott played percussion. The band managed to achieve a remarkably full sound, mostly because of Hott's inventive drumming and Harvey's confident vocals and knack of playing bass lines on his guitar (cribbed from his many years as a bass player) while simultaneously playing a melody.

The Freaks' sound was a combination of folk and rock, and drew heavily from the blues and primitive Americana music. Their lyrics focused on race, religion, and life in the South, although Harvey was also adept at writing about more personal topics (the lack of success of independent bands, his sex life and meeting the woman who would become his wife on "I Got Happy"[1]) using rich metaphors from these former topics, so that many of their songs could be interpreted in two entirely different ways. Bryan's obsession with southern Gothic issues influenced his song writing. These sentiments can be heard in such songs as "White Folk's Blood", "Family Tree" and "Big Houses" from the album Tantilla, and he cribbed the title of "A Good Man" from "Cakewalk" from Flannery O'Connor.

Harvey and Hott moved to Los Angeles for the release of the band's first album, Monkey on a Chain Gang, which received considerable critical acclaim. However, unsatisfied with life in L.A., they moved back east, where they recorded their subsequent albums and faded from the public spotlight. On March 13, 1988, House of Freaks performed at the legendary Auditorium Fillmore in San Francisco, California with The 77s and The Alarm. Audience members included Neil Young. The band did minor radio hits with singles "When The Hammer Came Down" and "Sun Gone Down" from "Tantilla" and "Rocking Chair" from "Cakewalk."

After the band's breakup, Harvey and Hott joined a Paisley Underground supergroup called Gutterball, headed by Steve Wynn, formerly of Dream Syndicate and also featuring Stephen McCarthy of The Long Ryders and Bob Rupe of The Silos. The group released two albums, Gutterball (1993) and Weasel (1995). Harvey co-wrote many songs on each. Hott later joined the band Cracker. Harvey has guested on a number of other artists' albums, including September 67's Lucky Shoe, two albums by Shannon Worrell (formerly of September 67), and Magnet's Shark Bait. Both Harvey and Hott assisted Mark Linkous on the debut Sparklehorse record. Bryan Harvey played in a funk band, NRG Krysys, in Richmond, Virginia with Coby Batty of The Fugs. Johnny Hott has a jazz combo with Stephen McCarthy.


Comments about House Of Freaks: