Bands to Watch #230: Magic Bullets

By on Monday, 14th November 2011 at 12:00 pm

Words by Tom Mughal

It sounds petty, but I’ve never been able to listen to the Smiths purely because of the fact I really dislike Morrissey‘s voice. This may be the reason why I’ve actually enjoyed Magic Bullets, a San Francisco-born indie pop band that has been dancing around commercial success for over 7 years now. The boys manage to emulate the best bits about the iconic Mancunian ‘80s band; their melodies are employed straight out of Johnny Marr’s school of guitar, and I would not be surprised if their melodramatic lyrics had been stolen from Morrissey’s notepad.

Their 2007 debut album, ‘a CHILD but in life yet a DOCTOR in love’, was a bit of a mess. Not to say that there aren’t some tracks on there worth a listen: ‘Yesterday’s Seen Better Days’ and ‘Spent Nights’ stand out as the most listenable on the album. The band were suffering through continuous line-up changes at this time and this reflected in their inconsistent debut.

However late last year, after signing with small independent label Mon Amie Records, they released their eponymous second album. ‘Magic Bullets’ is everything their debut should have been and more. The band have now really found their stride. Lead single ‘Lying Around’ (performed for the Alternate Side at WFUV in New York City is a lyrical treat and accompanied by lead singer Philip Benson’s Robert Smith-like vocals, it is definitely the stand-out track from the album. ‘Sigh the Day Away’ is full of the Smiths’ signature depressing hyperbole, which you can just tell is a massive influence within the band.

If their second album is anything to go by, then Magic Bullets’ next release should definitely be one to look out for.


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