Much ado about Magic Bullets

Birdie Loeffler | Staff Writer

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Let’s all give a warm farewell to Magic Bullets. Their EP, “Much Ado About,” is the last album they’ll make as a band and is their way of saying so long to their fans and stepping out of the music scene. After seven years of being Magic Bullets, the band cheerily says goodbye.

“Much Ado About” is the final work of the San Francisco-based group. Although Magic Bullets have seen members come and go, friends Philip Benson, lead singer, and Corey Cunningham, who plays guitar, have always been constants and consistently impressive. Nathan Sweatt (who has been with Benson and Cunningham since Magic Bullets’ beginning) plays bass guitar on “Much Ado About” while Sean McDonnell fingers the keyboard and Alex Kaiser delicately hammers on the drums.

For a farewell album, each song is surprisingly cheery and bright. Benson croons and whines in the prettiest and punk-est of ways. His voice is almost identical to that of the Smiths’ lead-singer, Morrissey, giving Magic Bullets a distinct pop-punk sound.

If you subtract Benson’s vocals from all of the tracks, each song sounds like a well-crafted pop song. By infusing each song with his gimmicky but still melodic drone, Benson transforms the songs from infuriatingly sweet to the perfect blend of melodies.

It’s a little presumptuous for a band that is this young and not exactly well known to put an album out specifically to say goodbye, but that doesn’t diminish the quality of the songs they’ve created. “Time and Again” is a fun song, with an electric guitar lick that would make Weezer proud and keeps that merrymaking vibe going.

The last song on the album, “If You Touch Her,” is an odd final track, but perhaps speaks more about the band breaking up than the unnamed girl the song seems to be about at first. The song’s lyrics allude to more than just a love story gone awry; “If you love her then leave her be / If you love her then stay away / If you touch her, there will be hell to pay.” Maybe Magic Bullets are deciding to throw the towel in before things start to fall apart. Even though the lyrics sound a bit cynical, the jolly guitar playing and vocal harmonies make light of the situation.

Magic Bullets are not quite going out with a bang, but it’s better to go out with a few songs reminiscent of happy memories instead of leaving on a sour note. And who knows? Maybe this isn’t the end. Maybe Magic Bullets will reappear with more sunny songs in the future.