True Panther is incredibly excited to announce that on August 24th Magic Kids‘ debut album Memphis will see the bright, gleaming and summery light of day. Recorded in the Memphis studio of Doug Easley over the course of several months it is an attempt to re-frame the city, not as the home of musical eras long-gone, but a place where crumbling neighborhoods hidden BBQ places, and closed-down roller rinks are all enveloped by a thick summer air, and a sense of MAGIC.
What Magic Kids share with last century’s masters- Jeff Lynne, Brian Wilson, Van Dyke Parks– is a belief in the promise of the pop song; in the ability to take a tiny and simple melodic gem, a small moment of wide-eyed sincerity, and translate it into something that is bursting with life. The arrangements and colors hinted at with their singles on Goner and Fat Possum, are in full bloom on the album. There are touches of late 80s Britpop, the Delphonics’ heartbreaking harmonies, ELO’s grandeur, and Belle & Sebastian’s intimacy. And MEMPHIS. While home to artists that range across genres- the music of the city is honest, robust and joyful- often made by iconoclastic, rebellious and larger-than life musicians. This is the Memphis where Magic Kids were born, where Bennett, Al, Ben, Michael, and Will grew up playing in garage bands, hanging around Goner Records and listening to records. It’s also the city that houses the orchestra of musicians they called upon to realize the sound and ambitions planned for this new collection of songs.
Memphis reminds us of some of the first exciting moments of becoming a lifelong music listener. The excitement, sounds, lush harmonies, and celebration. Their music isn’t positive because of the difficulties of life, but in spite of them. They are close to our hearts because they believe that no matter what the circumstances are, deliberate hard work and ambition mixed with joyous honesty still make it possible to craft classic, beautiful, and eternal pop music.
This first song “Summer” is a slightly more restrained and nuanced than what you may have heard before. In the words of the band “this song isn’t ‘fun in the summertime’ kind of summer, but more the wistful, fighting-loneliness-with-your-friends kind of summer.” We felt like sharing this one because honestly, it’s torture watching summer days blaze by without people having this mellow anthem at their disposal. So here we go. Enjoy the summer!
(Photo by Alejandra Sabillon)