Music should be all like this. Not in style or sound, but in dedication, passion and craftsmanship. This is what we, as customers, should demand from record companies at all times. The question is do major record companies even exist anymore. I don’t mean in brand names and websites, I mean really exist- with functional A&R departments able to search, spot and sign potentially great artists. I don’t think so. It’s a job I know well, having worked in major A&R departments for over 25 years that have signed some of the biggest multi-platinum selling artists ever to have walked this planet. Before becoming platinum sellers, these were just ordinary artists playing small town gigs, yet it took some A&R executives only 8 bars of music to sign who would later become global superstars.
So how come a band like MAGAZINE GAP, who have various single and EP releases, and have toured extensively, still release music independently via small record labels? Three boys from London, dreamed, worked hard, and delivered exquisite music to us, now they should be rightfully collecting for their endeavors, not fighting to promote and distribute it, right? Wrong!
The record industry has changed, for the worse, and record companies do not exist in the real world anymore, they’re just simple supermarket brands like Walmart or Tesco. They fill the shelves with as much junk as possible so you can fill your shopping cart. Thank god MAGAZINE GAP has the balls to continue working within a vacant industry beating their own path to where they need to go.
Their brand new single, “Ran For Cover”, isn’t the typical follow-up track from the British crossover band that’s been turning out first rate material since the beginning of their musical adventure. It doesn’t feel rushed and it doesn’t sound like the trio wanted to capitalize from the same things they’ve done so brilliantly before.
But there are certain elements in their enchanting musical equation that cannot, and should not be erased – An addictive blend of rhythm and tone, supplied by drummer Brian McCook and keyboard player Alex Ho. A flowing melody, sparkling hooks and poignant story-spinning lyrics, with James Keen’s guitar and mellifluously soulful vocals riding high over hugely emotional choruses – and in fact, they are all perfectly in place on the latest single. Yet there is something different in the formula…
The first thing that hits you on this track is the concise but sweeping horn arrangements, then comes the bouncing Reggaeton rhythm and rolling basslines, but atop of this cogently energetic soundscape MAGAZINE GAP narrates a tale of melancholic nostalgia – a veteran musician and performer reflecting on his life choices.
Usually when writing, this London based trio – that has toured the UK, USA and the Far East, fairly extensively – find that weighty, emotion-packed mini-epics come to them thick and fast. “Ran For Cover” is no exception to the rule, and adds another feather in their songwriting caps.
So while staying with their sound and changing some variables, MAGAZINE GAP has evolved into something even better than they were before – if that sounds at all possible to you. “Ran For Cover” is not just a good follow-up to anything that came before it, but it’s indeed an ideal follow-up.
The band is steadily creeping its way to a variety of audiences and formats, and we’ll see that even more with this new single. “Ran For Cover” doesn’t just have the feel of a record that could dominate it’s genre, but popular music in general. Did you hear that, Mr. A&R man!