Pop quartet go acoustic to air new LP
Exeter Phoenix, Friday; Princess Pavilions, Falmouth, Saturday
It's been three years since the Magic Numbers brought the lush melodies, heart-tugging hooks and exquisite harmonies of their timeless pop sound to this neck of the woods. But in the next few days they are playing a couple of low-key acoustic shows down here, airing tracks they've been recording over the past few months for their fourth studio album.
For the uninitiated, the Magic Numbers are brothers and sisters Romeo and Michele Stodart, and Angela and Sean Gannon, who met as neighbours in west London. They've been making their mark since emerging slowly from the suburb of Hanwell in 2002 armed with an ever-expanding bag full of thoughtful, touching and ultimately uplifting songs. They built a grassroots cult following among music lovers and musicians loved them too.
The band shot to media attention after selling out London's Kentish Town Forum solely on the strength of their loyal fan-base, before the release of their eponymous Mercury Music Prize nominated 2005 debut album on the Heavenly label. It, in turn, spawned chart singles Forever Lost, Love Me Like You and Love's A Game and the Magic Numbers had won their place on the mainstream radar, while continuing to tread their own low-key, laid-back path. Their last album, The Runaway, was released three years ago.
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Chief songwriter, guitarist and singer Romeo has a good excuse for stepping out of the limelight for a little while – he has become a father for the first time. Eighteen months ago his bouncing baby boy, Romeo Junior, came into his world and tipped it upside down.
"It was a mind-blowing experience and I just love every second. It spun me out, but I am becoming very professional at last. I was so used to just writing at any moment I wanted and I have had to learn to become much more disciplined about it," says Romeo. Support for the shows comes from Goldheart Assembly.