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Magic Man @ The Mod Club

Three years ago, I heard Magic Man's tune 'Paris' for the first time, and fell head over heels in love.

Though they've visited Toronto many times since, poor timing and bad luck have gotten in my way. Last night, I finally had the chance to see them live at their Hotline Spring North American Tour, courtesy of my Jukely subscription. Although I'm only familiar with a small handful of their tunes (Every Day, Texas, and of course, Paris), their live show was a tight and energetic set that I thoroughly enjoyed.

From the moment vocalist Alex Caplow takes the stage, you can sense his charisma. His every move - whether he's cradling the microphone to belt out a note, actively engaging with the audience, or even simply just standing onstage, is filled with confidence.

Side note: all pictures in this post were taken with my Canon SX280 - no media pass for me this time :(

Guitarist Sam Lee is the only other remaining member from the band's initial lineup. His onstage demeanor is more reserved than the energetic Caplow, but his performance provided the perfect instrumental backdrop. It's really nice to see a fellow person of Asian descent onstage; we're very under-represented in the Western music industry, so it made me really happy to see Lee's great performance.

With only one album under the belt, the band had limited songs to choose from. Despite this, each track created a quality performance, and they showcased some great new material as well. They supplemented their discography with two covers that evening, Bruce Springsteen's 'Dancing in the Dark', and the evening's closing number: R. Kelly's 'Ignition', during which openers Panama Wedding and The Griswolds joined them onstage.

This show was one of the first shows in a while that I attended without my camera, and I often found myself subconsciously reaching for it to capture specific frames. However, being sans DSLR was also quite liberating; there was no heavy baggage bogging me down as I jumped and danced around, and I was free to close my eyes and fully immerse myself in the music without worrying about a missed picture opportunity. It's been a long time since I enjoyed a show so unreservedly and wholeheartedly.

Tonight's show brought me back to a time when music was king. Though reviewing, documenting, and photographic concerts has become a passion of mine, attending a show purely for the sake of the music itself was liberating, and so so so much fun.

Magic Man is a wonderful band to see live, and I highly recommend them!

I also snapped a few pictures of Aussie indie-rockers, The Griswolds, who were the evening's openers.


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