The Magic Numbers started their career on a high with their stupendous self-titled debut record. However they have struggled to produce an album anywhere as well received since. That is until now.
Their fourth record Alias is a solid album of honest, heartfelt love songs that is reminiscent of their debut album. However, while their debut album was essentially an uplifting album about the troubles of young love, Alias is dark and brooding as it addresses the realities of adult relationships. It may be dark, but it still manages to deliver sweet delightful melodies that don’t leave you wanting to hide underneath your bedcovers.
The Magic Numbers self-titled debut album was a great collection of cute love songs that mended a teenager’s broken heart. Despite being an album about heartbreak, they managed to create an uplifting record. Then came the following two albums that weren’t as uplifting and the melodies and harmonies weren’t as sweet. Alias may not be as uplifting as the debut album, but the songs are sweet and honest in the same kind of soothing way.
The album begins with ‘Wake up’, a sentimental number which starts slowly and pulls you in with its lyrics and then builds up to a block of noise which certainly would wake any living soul in the vicinity of the speakers. This song sets the tone for the rest of the album which has it’s loud songs of sentimental mess, mixed in with slower sweet numbers. Throughout the album though, there is an underlying darkness to the songs that is unheard on previous albums. Lyrics speak of disappointment, loss, lies and fears.
The fourth track ‘Shot In The Dark’ is one of the highlights on the album and understandably was chosen as the first single of the record. It’s one of the rockier songs on the album, with a fetching hook and chorus, with a sneaky electric bluesy guitar solo making an appearance in the latter half of the song. In contrast, immediately after is the slow “Roy Obison”, a song about yearning a love that can’t be given, with the lyrics ‘it’s easy let me just believe tonight, don’t tease me, let me just believe tonight’ tugging at the heartstrings.
While their debut album was light-hearted and uplifting, this album is dark and each song feels like you are opening a door in a dark mansion, withholding lots of secrets. Desperation, indecision and heartbreak are on the edge of each harmony, yet there is still something soothing about the stories told. It’s honest, sometimes raw but it is its ability to resonate with the listener that makes it a solid album.
Review Score: 7.8 out of 10
Written by Kimberley Salmond