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Magic Car | Yellow Main Sequence (Tiny Dog)
While the geographic specificity of musical styles are these days up for grabs, open to be appropriated and accomodated whatever the location, it's possibly a different story with lyrics. It becomes a thorny proposition when the sound is as specifically located as the country swing of Magic Car. Hailing from Nottingham, England, how to render this Western music in their own vocabulary is something that Magic Car haven't quite resolved. Which is not to say that they're all stetsons and spurs, just that they sing of 'downtown' and 'movies', of 'hobos' and 'whiskey and rye' and other things that posit questions about Magic Car's position as anything other than weekend role-players. This all may be my own problem, because it's not the songs themselves that are at fault. Blending desolate sentiments of heartache with hoe-down swingers as the male-female vocals blend and separate backed by mandolin, banjo, double bass and pedal steel, the songs on Yellow Main Sequence are as fine and sincere as anything the genre has produced.

Martin Williams
CWAS #7 - Spring 2001

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