Chris Head and the Honchos
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Chris Head and the Honchos

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2009 | SELF

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2009
Band Rock Americana




"Live Review 7.20.2013"

[Chris Head & the Honchos] meld sunny Americana with solid power pop sensibilities, which probably came through the clearest on a convincing, country fried rendition of Big Star's "In the Street" . . . . Most of their set was originals, though, built on hooky songcraft and delivered with professional polish. - Shepherd-Express

"Interview in Americana Gazette (scroll for Aug/Sept 2012 issue)"

"Leader and visionary songwriter Chris Head . . . and Honchos Tim Ungrodt . . . with Rizal Iskandarsjach . . . play some of the best toe-tappin' bar music this side of Lake Michigan. . . . Head's writing and singing style reminds me of Radney Foster, while the Honchos are one of the best rhythm sections in Wisconsin Americana today. The music these three men create is one of substance and style." - Americana Gazette

"Hard Truths review in Americana Gazette (scroll for Feb/Mar 2012 issue)"

There's enough twang here for the purest country lover and enough footstompin rock & roll for the rocker in you. Head . . . is a consummate musician and writer [and] . . . . is a storyteller that touches the listener both lyrically and musically. . . . The cool guitar parts and the excellent rhythm section . . . really bring these songs to life. . . . The pop feeling of Head's songs rings true to his roots. . . . One of my favorite CD's . . . in the past 6 months. - Americana Gazette

"Hard Truths review in Shepherd Express"

For Chris Head & the Honchos . . . the romantic aspirations of the group’s pop-rock complement the bittersweet sentimentality of their rootsy Americana. The name may suggest humor, but the music is much more serious . . . . Hard Truths delivers a mature aesthetic that could use an outside hand in the studio control booth to brighten the band’s engaging sound. - Shepherd Express


Still working on that hot first release.



Chris Head and the Honchos combines a gritty roots sensibility with the melodic instincts of classic rock and pop.  Ballads and rockers, and power pop intersect for a thoughtful and engaging hybrid as modern as it is traditional.

When the band began work on their follow-up to 2011’s Hard Truths, they sought to maintain the debut’s diversity, but goosed with a more focused attack.  Once again working with Shane Hochstetler at Howl Street Recording, the baker’s dozen songs on Chicken Wire promise to do just that.  Roots influences remain prominent, with flashes of country traditionalism and solid rock ‘n’ roll grooves blending with buoyant melodies and probing lyrics.  In other words, expect more of the “country-rock earworms” (Madison’s Isthmus) that led Hard Truths to receive positive reviews, but imbued with an extra punch honed over months of live performances.

The Honchos formed in 2009, when Rizal Iskandarsjach and Tim Ungrodt began putting flesh on the bones of Chris Head’s original compositions.  While each brings something unique to the band, it’s how the three blend that distinguishes the Honchos.  Riz anchors the band with rhythm work by turns subtle and pounding, based on the needs of the song.  Tim channels his love of energetic rock and pop into melodically and harmonically inventive bass lines that propel the songs forward.  Chris, a transplant from rural, middle Tennessee, slathers layers of acoustic and electric guitar over songs that tackle a variety of topics, styles, and moods. 

The flexibility of the trio format allows the band to adapt their music to the needs of the moment and can downshift into intimate, acoustic settings or accelerate into the high-voltage sunset.  Writing about their live shows, the Shepherd-Express noted, “[Chris Head and the Honchos] meld sunny Americana with solid power pop sensibilities, . . . built on hooky songcraft and delivered with professional polish.”  Now, having burnished Chicken Wire’s songs in the studio, the Honchos are excited to bring them to rough and tumble life on the stage.

Band Members