Monday, February 04, 2008


I have a feeling that the past year marks a turning point after years of complaining about Kingston's music scene (generally summed up as a cyclical issue: lack of venues, and therefore an absence of local bands). Though finding venues is still difficult, a few musicians have broken through the local ennui and are forming bands. Really good bands. (See The Gertrudes, listen to Nich Worby's album when it comes out later this spring, go to Apple Crisp).

Magic Jordan played their first show last May, opening for Woodhands. The night was indeed magic: the gallery was hot, crowded and sweaty, and between sets, the crowd piled out into the street, lured back inside after show promoter Greg Tilson handed out sparklers. The band was electric--members were trading places, cheering their own band name and barely controlling their own energy. In the four or five times I've seen them since, the act has become tighter but the energy is still there. The band has a songwriting chemistry that brings focus through fantastic tunes that lyrically cycle and rhythmically wander. Bass player and singer Paul Saulnier's cover of Gary Numan's iconic electropop tune "M.E." (sampled on that Basement Jaxx "Where's Your Head At?" track) is not to be missed, and their first song, "Magic Jordan Part 1," just keeps getting better.

Jenni O'Neill-keys, vox
Paul Saulnier-bass, vox
Benjamin Nelson-drums, vox
Jeff Barbeau-synth

Add them up, already!

PS. All of their gig posters are wonderful. Paul and Ben do them, and Paul and Ben are wonderful.

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