The Memphis, Tennessee-based Magic Kids write some of the most delicious, youthfully exuberant pop songs I’ve heard in some time–well-written pop cuts that call to mind songwriting heavyweights such as Elvis Costello, Joey Ramone and Brian Wilson, as well as indie-pop contemporaries such as Girls and Architecture in Helsinki. The similarities are fitting since their tunes pay homage to 50s pop/rock while retaining an acute sense of “now.” Their debut full-length, Memphis, is a fresh, clean blend of sweet lyrics, upbeat hooks and light-headed power pop mingling alongside an “orchestra of local musicians and friends playing oboes, strings, horns, 808s and synths.” And because it is so fresh, upbeat and full of good cheer, it pairs extremely well with today’s recipe on eating/sf for homemade strawberry ice-cream with limoncello. Challenge: make this ice-cream and listen to this album while you eat it and see if you can keep the stupid grin off your face. I’m betting you can’t.
The joyous, tinsel-filled “Phone Song” opens Memphis with a quick-shot of acoustic-strumming and light-weight strings. It’s followed by the sugar-filled lyrics and dramatically swirling melody of “Candy” (which feature the lyrics: “there is no candy sweeter than my baby”) . And when it seems like the hooks couldn’t get any bigger and the lyrics any more upbeat, they drop the nostalgic and energetic “Super Ball.” It is an album’s worth of modern indie rock influenced by early ’50s-’60s sunshine pop developed around rich harmonies, warm instrumentation and good vibes. Memphis is scheduled for an August 24th release. You can pre-order it now from Insound.
Head back to eating/sf to read the recipe for fresh strawberry ice-cream with limoncello.