The Magnificents

The Magnificents

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If it weren't for the icy willy-nilly synths, Scotland's the Magnificents would probably be considered just another decent, scrappy punk band. Those synths are all-important -- almost, but not quite, as important as they were to Gary Numan after the first Tubeway Army album. Each song provides its own form of racket; despite being chaotic as hell, the band is deceivingly tight, with springboard-shot rhythms (both programmed and played), clattering guitars, synths that prod and buzz, and vocals that either bark or drone. These components sort of fall on top of one another to form an ideal mess. If anything, the band resembles a nervy, crabby version of the Silicon Teens, a short-lived synth pop "group" led by Mute leader Daniel Miller. Just like that group's Music for Parties, The Magnificents is, at the very least, deserving of adored, cult status.

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