The Magic Numbers
The Magic Numbers


4.0
excellent

Review

by Andrew H. EMERITUS
December 17th, 2005 | 16 replies


Release Date: 2005 | Tracklist


Coming out of nowhere, The Magic Numbers have quickly become one of the biggest bands of 2005. Mixing a sunny pop sound, reminiscent of the 60s with a new indie rock sound, The Magic Numbers are well on their way to stardom.

The Magic Numbers
Romeo Stodart - Vocals, Guitar
Michelle Stodart - Bass, Vocals, Keyboards
Sean Gannon - Drums
Angela Gannon - Percussion, Melodica, Vocals


The Magic Numbers' progressive pop sound has been finding a place in the hearts of music lovers worldwide. Indeed, though the band are based in Britain, they feature members from the London, Trinidad and the New York. Possibly the best thing about The Magic Numbers' debut is the fact that it is so easily accessible. Instead of relying on gimmicks to make interesting pop music, The Magic Numbers simply let their sound do the talking. Anyone who sees photos of the band will soon realise that it's not image that has made this band popular, but rather the strength of their music and in particular, their singles. First single, "Forever Lost" is one of the most catchy, fun, progressive and all around brilliant tracks on the record. Featuring pretty guitar licks, lyrics that are easy to relate to and harmonies that The Beach Boys would be jealous of, "Forever Lost" is without a doubt one of the best singles of the year. It begins with an upbeat guitar groove and Romeo's excellent vocals. It slowly morphs into something entirely different, until it builds back up to the original chorus. This happens reguarly throughout the album, refusing to let songs become boring. Though this album is easily accessible, the way that songs progress and change into entirely different compositions is something rarely seen outside of inaccessible and unmemorable progressive metal. In an age where pop music has become stagnant with 80s rip-off bands, 'punk' bands who's posters are stuck on the walls of every 13 year old girl in Western society and horribly repetetive modern R&B artists, The Magic Numbers are, if nothing else, a breath of fresh air.

Although The Magic Numbers is quite easily one of the best records of the year, it suffers from what seems to be the biggest issue this year in indie releases. It simply has too many tracks. While the album starts incredibly strongly and finishes well, the late middle of it suffers. Considering that The Magic Numbers is a 13 track, well-over-an-hour affair, some of the songs towards the middle of the record simply do not need to be there. That's not to say that those songs are totally useless, because patient listeners will no doubt find themselves in love with every song on the album. However, with this record being a debut, perhaps culling tracks such as "Wheels on Fire", "Try" and "Love is Game" would have worked towards the album's benefit. An impressive aspect of this record is the musical skill involved, particularly in the guitar and vocal department. While 10 minute guitar solos will probably never become popular to a mainstream audience, The Magic Numbers offer a fresh alternative to the 3 chord pop-punk which dominates the radio so heavily in 2005. Tasteful guitar licks, beautiful vocal harmonies and impressive singing dominate this record without a powerchord in sight.

The Magic Numbers, with their fresh sound, have created one of the best records of the year. Including ballads, as well as upbeat pop songs, The Magic Numbers includes a healthy amount of variation. Injecting fun, musical skill, beauty, diversity and originality back into pop music, The Magic Numbers deserve every bit of critical acclaim they have seen this year.


Pros
Fun, catchy, progressive and original
A good mix of songs and sounds
Skilled musicianship and varied instrumentation

Cons
A bit too long
Slightly weak album closer; 'It Won't Hurt' would have been more effective

Reccomended Tracks
Forever Lost
Love Me Like You
This Love

FINAL RATING: 4/5



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Comments:Add a Comment 
Med57
Moderator
December 18th 2005


1001 Comments


Good review...this is a very nice little indie pop album. Very well put together, and I agree with you about how it could easily be a bit shorter. It does drag a bit in the middle.

br3ad_man
Emeritus
December 18th 2005


2125 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks Med. For me, there's only about 3 songs that are boring, but when I first listened to it, pretty much everything after 'Which Way To Be Happy' was boring.


You haven't been around Alt&Indie much man

wikuk
December 18th 2005


1110 Comments


what is "It won't hurt"?

good review


204409
Emeritus
December 18th 2005


3996 Comments


So br3ad, I'm an idiot. The band I thought you like is called Magic Bullets, and they're pretty sweet.

www.myspace.com/magicbullets

Med57
Moderator
December 18th 2005


1001 Comments


You haven't been around Alt&Indie much man


Yeah, the forums been kind of boring recently whenever I've looked in. :-

Following on from what you said about the image of tthe band not making them popular, they walked off Top of the Pops in the UK after a presenter made a really lame joke about their size, and that got them loads of attention. Quite ironic actually.

Zebra
Moderator
December 18th 2005


2647 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Besides Architecure in Helsinki's "In Case We Die" this has to be my least favorite release of 2005.

I think that most of these songs are cheesy and gimmicky. This album gets old fast and lacks replay value.

Although I like the first three tracks, the album doesn't stand up well on its own.

Iai
Emeritus
December 18th 2005


3553 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

However, with this record being a debut, perhaps culling tracks such as "Love's A Game" would have worked towards the album's benefit.

You want to get rid of the best song on the album?!

br3ad_man
Emeritus
December 18th 2005


2125 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Not even close. I like it, but I think it would be a better album without the tracks I mentioned.

Iai
Emeritus
December 18th 2005


3553 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

I just noticed this, too.

Slightly weak album closer


....."Hymn For Her" being my second favourite on the album.

What is "It's Won't Hurt", anyway? The only Numbers songs I know that ain't on here is "Anima Sola", which is good, but shouldn't have made the album, and "Sing A Song For Her", which they did for a Tim Buckley/Jeff Buckley tribute album.This Message Edited On 12.18.05

br3ad_man
Emeritus
December 19th 2005


2125 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Tracklistings are all different in other countries. The line "hymn for her" is in the song that is listed as "It Won't Hurt" on mine.

Robert Crumb
Emeritus
December 19th 2005


165 Comments


I gave up on this album really quick. Nothing seemed to grab me, which is kinda sad because I thought it would really appeal to me. I should probably give it another go before I bury it.

init tho
April 3rd 2006


12 Comments


its a pretty good album, i mean it aint one i can listen to it all the way throught but its definately a good one to have, the songs are catchy tho some sound sorta the same but know i like thease guys so much i went to see em yer it ain that bad

mx
Moderator
July 18th 2006


733 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

This album, IMO, only has a few good songs, and the rest are just boring. His voice grates on me too.

br3ad_man
Emeritus
July 19th 2006


2125 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I like them a lot less after seeing them live, which is weird because they were pretty good live. Maybe because the songs that they said were new songs were all bad.

livinginafantasy
August 29th 2006


35 Comments


i'd heard things about this album, both good and bad.
and today i thought i'd check it out.
and i have to say, i am impressed.
really nice vocals.
havnt gone into depth of any songs yet, but on the surface this sounds great.

Riziger
October 7th 2007


316 Comments


saw them on mtv live. i'm pretty impressed. nice light poppy stuff and i love the vocal melodies.

never heard of them before this though....



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