Gig Review: Magic Man At The House Of Blues

Photo: Joyce Jude Lee / SNS

Photo: Joyce Jude Lee / SNS

On a Monday night, two of the most buzzed about indie bands took their co-headlining tour to the Anaheim House of Blues and delivered back to back awesome sets. Magic Man and Smallpools have only been on the music scene for a little over the year, but you wouldn’t be able to tell seeing the long line of excitable fans that arrived early to get a good spot.

Photo: Joyce Jude Lee / SNS

Photo: Joyce Jude Lee / SNS

First on the bill was Magic Man, an energetic five pieces hailing from Boston Massachusetts. For unfamiliar listeners, the band sounds like a mixture of Passion Pit meets Death Cab For Cutie after they’ve had five cans of Red Bull. Though the band put on a stellar show to 10,000 at Boston Calling the last time I saw them in May, their set in Anaheim showcased a more confident and cohesive Magic Man. That’s unsurprising-since May, Magic Man has released their incredible debut, “Before The Waves,” and toured with Walk The Moon and Panic! At The Disco. Surely, the band must have picked up tips from these music veterans.

Photo: Joyce Jude Lee / SNS

Photo: Joyce Jude Lee / SNS

Screams and cheers abound the room as soon as the band stepped onto the stage, and the sound only amplified when lead singer Alex Caplow joined his band mates for their opener, “Texas,” an infectious synth pop tune that pumped up the crowd right away. Riding on the first song’s buzz, Magic Man continued to sample more of their album, including “Apollo.” Songs that trailed were “Waves” and “Out Of Mind,” the band’s second single which featured guitarist Sam Lee performing an awesome guitar riff in the last half of the tune. The band championed on, playing “Tonight” and “Honey,” two songs that were unassuming highlights of their show, among others. The former incited incredible audience participation; when Alex refrained “Tonight, we’re all believers,” everyone in the room hand their hands up and were waving them around. “Honey,” perhaps the slowest song in their set, sounds like a song you would hear swimming in the depths of the ocean and leagues away from the rest of Magic Man’s catalog.

Photo: Joyce Jude Lee / SNS

Photo: Joyce Jude Lee / SNS

When energy filled the room to the brim, Magic Man tipped it over the edge when Sam Lee began the easily distinguishable opening riff to Jimmy Eat World’s “The Middle.” This song was a perfect choice and a throwback to those angsty high school days: everyone in the room recognized the song and sang along. After humbly thanking the crowd for its incredible stamina and warm reception, Alex and the band launched into “Paris,” the band’s first single which launched them into the indie scene. Even those who might not have known all the words to the earlier songs sang back the lyrics to the Boston band.

Leaning in and out of the crowd and jumping up and down with jittery moves, Caplow and the rest of Magic Man warmed the hearts of Anaheim on a cold Monday night. By the time their set ended, I was exhausted; Magic Man’s infectious energy rendered it impossible to stay still.

-J

Originally posted here.

 

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