Magic Trick’s Gorgeous “River Of Souls” Arrives In Time For Your Holiday Entertaining

There will soon come a time — it may be now — when people quit referring to Magic Trick as the side project of The Fresh & Onlys’ Tim Cohen.  For really, when the merits are weighed, the better description is that The Fresh & Onlys are Magic Trick frontman’s Tim Cohen’s side project.

River Of Souls made it in just under the wire, and we would convene the editorial team at Tulip Frenzy World HQ to have a serious discussion of which worthy band it must bump to make it on our pretty much already formed Top Ten List, if only we could get them to stop dancing to the Kelley Stoltzy “The Store,” or nodding their heads to the fun “My World.”

This is an album that is at once so tastefully tuneful, so catchy and pretty, sweet and bright that we are already making up the seating charts for Holiday parties in the weeks ahead — just so we can play it at dinner!   The fire crackling, suckling spam coming from the roti, the claret decorked — oh, the festivities this brilliant disk will get going.  It’s going to be a helluva warm’n’toasty finish to 2013, now that said bright platter’s plopped on the old victrola.

If ever you want that perfect example of how someone who doesn’t always hit the notes can be said to have a great voice, don’t invoke Lou or Bob.  Tim Cohen can either over- or undershoot the melody, but on average his singing’s marvelous, and he long ago learned the pro tip that wrapping his vox in the soft flannel of a pretty girl’s voice, better yet two, would make everyone feel warm inside.  We loved last year’s Ruler Of The Night, which sounded like what would happen if the Brian Eno of Tiger Mountain had been kidnapped and fed mushrooms in Mendocino.  In fact, we’d venture that “Weird Memories” was our single favorite song of the year.  But here’s the thing, River of Souls is better.  It’s a smoky, mysterious, sinuous dip into complex folk rock with psychedelic undertones and a soupçon of Beggars Banquet-like country added to the mix.

Download “Salvation” and your ears will respond like you’ve just filled them with melted chocolate that’s been left to cool in the warm breeze of a Baja California night.  One song later, when the gorgeous “Bridge of Gold” comes on, you’ll find yourself shushing loved ones while saying not a word.  That’s right, you won’t have to tell them what to listen for.  They’ll just start nodding their heads to the beat, and will thank you for allowing them to listen.

One Response to “Magic Trick’s Gorgeous “River Of Souls” Arrives In Time For Your Holiday Entertaining”

  1. […] surprise here, since we broadly hinted last week that they would make it.  But as we said then, Magic Trick is a magic band, and this was a gorgeous album we intend on […]

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