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A Different Ship
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  • Luke Temple and company keep on their road with the band's third album, but Here We Go Magic just aren't quite living up to their name beyond familiar, ultimately less than inspiring moves. It's not that the bandmembers aren't trying -- more than once they almost suggest an inspired fusion of early Beta Band with Hail to the Thief-era Radiohead, if more straightforwardly rock-inclined than both. But when Temple's voice takes on more of a clear Thom Yorke quality as it goes -- "Alone But Moving" in particular is pretty much an overt tribute -- then sometimes the line between inspiration and tribute is effaced. The album does start promisingly: after a bit of moody murkiness in a brief piece appropriately and descriptively called "Intro," hearing them shift into a mood that sounds like Nick Drake getting quietly funky -- soft echoed vocals, bouncing bass, and a steady pulsing energy in the rhythms -- is a treat. Here We Go Magic move between more full-on hyperactivity in that vein from songs like "Make Up Your Mind" and "I Believe in Action" to the easier-going grooves of "Alone But Moving," but too often they don't do much with that. "How Do I Know" strikes one of the better balances between the band's two sides, driving and energetic while just a bit wistful, even as Temple's voice has a bit more of a clipped quality. Meanwhile, "Over the Ocean" isn't a Low cover but that might have been a fun curve ball, or at least a more distinct one. ~ Ned Raggett
Professional Reviews
Magnet (p.60) - "Like a long-playing lucid dream, the album's 10 tracks flow effortlessly from one compositional-curveball-abounding celestial pop pastiche to the next."

Q (Magazine) (p.104) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[G]uitars duck and dive, snares crisply crack, layers of sound are subtly added. The slower tracks too, which allow Luke Temple's haunting croon to shine, are built on delicately hypnotic textural shifts."

Mojo (Publisher) (p.88) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[A] record that soothes as often as it unsettles. You can't help liking it all the more for that."
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