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All in the family

The Magic Numbers - The Magic Numbers
(Heavenly Recordings)
2 1/2 stars (out of 5 stars)
Reviewed: Nov. 18, 2005
The Magic Number

Review by Tony Bonyata

On The Magic Numbers' self-titled full-length debut bandleader Romeo Stodart has not only secured the talents of his sister Michele on bass and vocals, but also that of drummer Sean Gannon and the percussions and third vocals of Gannon's sister Angela for this new musical family.
The fruit that this pair of siblings bare is a hybrid of indie-rock and pure unadulterated '60s influenced pop. While the single "Forever Lost" at first sounds more alternative, the sugary chorus - complete with three-part harmonies - adds a bubblegum sheen to this slice of modern rock. Both "Long Legs" and "Love Me Like You," with their snappy tempos and cheery demeanors, also hearken back to the sunny sounds of AM rock from four decades earlier.
While comparisons to American pop bands of the 1960s, such as the Lovin' Spoonful and the Mamas & Papas, immediately spring to mind, the downfall is that, despite the cheeky harmonies and skip-to-my-lou melodies, the compositions ultimately fall short of the aforementioned pop institutes. Despite the album starting off with peppier numbers, the sugar-buzz soon wears off as the album hits midpoint. Songs such as the introspective "This Love" and "Try," as well as the sparse "Wheel's On Fire" drastically alter the momentum of the record. Thankfully, however, the one prize hiding in the bottom of this box is the gentle and lovely pop number "Loves A Game," which is worth digging around to find.
Although The Magic Numbers haven't yet achieved the perfect pop sound they're obviously in search of, this record still hints that this pair of brothers and sisters certainly have it in them for future efforts.

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