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The Magic Numbers - Those the Brokes

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The Magic Numbers
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The second album from The Magic Numbers, Those the Brokes find this hirsute UK foursome-comprised of two brother/sister pairs, Michele and Romeo Stodart with Angela and Sean Gannon-expanding on the florid, harmonic pop vision showcased on their Mercury Music Prize-nominated 2005 debut. Importantly, Those the Brokes doesn't just mimic that album's most obvious tricks-or, indeed, the tricks of their forefathers (the Beach Boys, the Mamas and the Papas). Indeed, these 13 tracks often find The Magic Numbers eschewing straightforward breezy sing-alongs for more complex outings that boast a more nuanced understanding of shade and space, or hide firm, beating hearts underneath their diaphanous pop exteriors. Oh, okay, the opening "This Is a Song" prances along at a fleet-footed tempo, all lilting, interlocking voices and tumbling guitars. But "Take a Chance" comes on like a candy-flavoured Sonic Youth, breathy harmonies hiding choppy guitar crunch, while "Undecided" -a mid-album delight that sees Angela take the microphone for a bruised, bluesy paean to breaking up and making up-boasts the sort of vintage soul muscle that few, to date, have given The Magic Numbers credit for. Time to reconsider. -Louis Pattison.

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1) This Is a Song
2) You Never Had It
3) Take a Chance
4) Boy
5) Undecided
6) Slow Down (The Way It Goes)
7) Keep It in the Pocket
8) Take Me or Leave Me
9) Let Somebody in
10) Runnin' Out
11) Goodnight
12) All I See (Hidden Track)
13) Goodnight

Those the Brokes
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Those the Brokes | The Magic Numbers