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Magic Circle - Departed Souls

Label: 20 Buck Spin
Format: Download
Released: 2019
Reviewed By: Jack Mangan
Rating: 8.5/10

This is the good shit. During one of the refrains of “I’ve Found My Way to Die,” singer Brendan Radigan is either saying, “I’m not going to die with the herd / I’ve got a big mustang,” or ““I’m not going to die with the herd / I’ve got a big mustache” - - or maybe it’s something else. I’m going to choose to go with “I’ve got a big mustache,” because that’s awesome, and also what best fits the deep, Hard Rockin’ 1970s vibe of this record.


There are lots of bands doing retro Doomy Rock and Metal in the latter years of the the 21st Century’s second decade, but Magic Circle are one of the more distinctive. Their “Departed Souls” album features a number of special moments, especially in “I’ve Found My Way To Die,” Valley of the Lepers,” the Zeppelin-y “A Day Will Dawn Without Nightmares,” the weird little tapedeck-in-the-yard recording instrumental, “Bird City Blues,” and “Hypnotized.”
Radigan’s screamy vocals are electrifying, inviting you to sing along badly. He channels greats like Ozzy, Tony Martin, Glenn Hughes, Billy Squier, Derek St. Holmes, Geddy Lee, and maybe a tad of Ian Gillan.
Otherwise, their sound recalls “Sabbath Bloody Sabbath”/”Technical Ecstasy” era Black Sabbath, early Ritchie Blackmore with Deep Purple and Rainbow, Ted Nugent, early Rush, occasionally Led Zeppelin, and Trouble.
Magic Circle do Harry Dresden proud. This is a good one.

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