The Magic Gang @ The Old Fire Station 04/02/18

Brighton quartet The Magic Gang, (who are regularly compared to 90s band Weezer) performed at the quirky Old Fire Station in Bournemouth last night.

The band have recently announced a March tour beginning in Birmingham on 22nd March, before calling off in Manchester, Leeds, Glasgow, Bristol and London. They are also going to be featured on BBC Radio 1 tonight at 7:30pm with Annie Mac with their new single ‘Getting Along’.

The men stroll onto the humble stage, holding out for a hello. After an unrecognisable track to open the show, the second song ‘All This Way’ grabs the crowd and causes a happy sing-song.

After the third song ‘Only Waiting’, from their 2016 EP, the band stop for a short beer break and chat with the audience. (Rhythm guitar and vocals) Jack Kaye asks how everyone is doing and queries if it’s okay that they play a few new songs for us.

The new track, ‘Getting Along’ (that is due to release tomorrow) is slightly heavier than previous releases, still The Magic Gang have managed to find the harmonious balance between rock and pop with a generous splash of soul.

The further into the set they get, it is clear to see they’re not just bandmates, but real mates. They all met when they were 16 or 17, Paeris Giles (drums) and Kristian Smith (lead guitar and vocals) were previously in a two piece band together. The band perform like they’re having the time of their lives, Smith and Kaye regularly chose to share one microphone and and face each other whilst playing, instead of the audience. The giggles and carefree attitude became contagious to the audience.

Succeeding the 8th or 9th song of the night, the band announce that they are going to treat us to some new songs (that haven’t yet been released) and reveal that we are the first crowd to hear them.

After a few new tunes and even more older crowd-pleasers, the band pay their thanks and inform us that the next song will be their last. They sing us out with ‘All That I Want Is You’, pints are no longer kept tight in hands and the youthful mob falls into a frenzy.

Like a lot of shows with loyal fans, when the band finishes the crowd finds it hard to accept. As the men left the stage a “one more song!” chant broke out, usually this tactic is unsuccessful but surprisingly the guys return to the stage, showcasing their loyalty to fans and perform their 2015 hit ‘No Fun’.

The venue (that opened in 1995) feels like the perfect spot for The Magic Gang to perform before setting off for their UK tour. Now living in Brighton, the band are all originally from Bournemouth and host a 90s-like persona (music and style). The Old Fire Station is a modest yet special venue, with its unique architecture and interesting decor, fitting to a band who are humble yet distinctive and captivating.