at M Theory Records
Bit of a coup for the M Theory in-store show line up, getting this band. I didn't even know they were in town, but I gathered from a mid set snip of an aggressively tied wrist band that they must have been in town for a special Comic Con event. I'm not a fan of Majical Cloudz but they became firmly implanted in my radar array earlier this year prior to the release of Impersonator, their debut LP on Matador Records. Impersonator was released the same week as Drifters/LITD, so they came up during pre-release discussions about whether the DB record would be able to garner a BNM- the other major release from that week was Daft Punk.
My NYC based publicist for this record blithely asserted during an IM conversation that Majical Cloudz was "a lock" for BNM, and we agreed that Daft Punk was as well, which to me implied that our record didn't have a chance. That's how I interpreted the remark, even if it was unintentional. At any rate, history proved her wrong, and while Majical Cloudz scored a solid 8.2 they did not, in fact, garner a BNM. Still though, an 8.2 and a debut LP on Matador Records is nothing to sneer at, and certainly not a band to ignore, so when I got late breaking info (via a twitter post of a facebook status update, OF COURSE.) I rand off on 15 minutes notice to M Theory to see what Majical Cloudz was about, literally scanning the Impersonator Pitchfork Album Review on my Galaxy as I walked in the door.
Like I said before, I'm not in it to be cool, I'm in it for business, and I like to know what the fuck is going on with a band before I see the live act, even if it's a live act on a Sunday at 6 PM in a record store. Majical Cloudz is what you call a "synth pop duo," but they are obviously at the top of that class of artists due to a potent singer/programmer combination. The singer Devon/Devin(sp?) Welsh brings top vocals, emotionally acute lyrics and a commanding stage presence- and as means of an aside- if you see an Artist who can legitimately "command" a record store at 6 PM on a Sunday he or she is special. The programmer, Matthew Otto, brought a deft, light touch to the backing tracks that didn't overwhelm the occasionally delicate vocals.
Performing together it was clear that the Matador LP and 8.2 could be no fluke. Majical Cloudz is a band with unlimited upside and they are almost certain to command a wide audience once they start hitting the road on a regular basis. It was just so obvious. They are in a similar category as How To Dress Well or even James Blake: Synth pop with quality vocals and acute song writing. It's a narrow, but potentially lucrative space to occupy since you can appeal to elements of audiences for EDM, singer songwriters and of course synth pop. It's also a style that can take you to the top of the Top 40 chart- sorry for the comparison- but Owl City is an example of what I mean.
So even though Majical Cloudz isn't the kind of band that really gets me off, I can totally see how they are have gotten to where they are, and would argue that they have a bright, bright future ahead. If you missed the in store, your next chance to see Majical Cloudz in San Diego will be at the Casbah on August 28th.
Advance tickets are 10 USD. (BUY HERE)