Chicago’s Handcuffs release album, stay focused, remain
lighthearted…oh, and get the BLURT nod of approval, too. Presenting our very
first BLURT-Sonicbids “Best Kept Secret” pick – for more details on
how to qualify, go to BLURT’s Sonicbids page.
By Mandy Rodgers
The Handcuffs rock duo was born after a chance newsstand encounter between
Chloe Orwell and Brad Elvis in matching purple suede jackets.
Though the serendipitous description of Orwell and Elvis’s first meeting on
the band’s official
Website is not entirely true, the real jackets were stolen from them.
“That’s how cool they were,” says Orwell now. “But,
fortunately, the relationship lives on. No one can ever steal that away from
us. We like to think that whoever stole our jackets will meet up someday in a
The two first played music together in Elvis’s Chicago-based band Big
Hello where Orwell helped write music and sang lead. Big Hello gave the
two significant exposure, but they decided to venture into new territory after
realizing they were the ones holding the group together.
“It’s as if we were handcuffed together in a positive, creative
way,” says Orwell, of the band’s name. “Brad came up with the name,
and we both just thought it was a really good rock ‘n’ roll moniker.”
Now, they have enlisted the help of bassist Emily Togni (via Craig’s List)
and guitarist/keyboardist Ellis Clark (through a nightclub) to round out the
Although they’re all friends, the core of The Handcuffs is still Orwell and
“We really like playing with them. They have a good positive
energy,” says Orwell. “And they’re kinda fine with that – to be along
for the ride.”
After releasing a new album, Electroluv, on Dec. 2, the group plans
to record and tour next year but feels most rewarded by the little things.
“The biggest rewards are often the ones that are seemingly the tiniest,
like a fan says, ‘you changed my life with that song’ or your BLURT’s ‘Best
Kept Secret,'” says Orwell.
“All the small things,” adds Elvis.
“Good name for a song – oh wait, somebody already did that,” jokes
Handcuffs on the web: