AM Magic

AM Magic


San Francisco indie-pop expansionist band AM Magic has a strong sense of song-craft. These are record collectors with wild imaginations and impeccable taste.


San Francisco’s AM Magic offers record number two, the oddly titled yet gratifying and approachable, Magique Concrète. The complexities of city life, love, family, friends, musical exploration, skateboarding and growing up are culminated into nine songs of wide-reaching, pop-centric indie rock. The words “concrete magic” sum it up nicely.

Magique Concrète was recorded and mixed by Nik Freitas, an old friend and former bandmate who went on to find much success as both a solo artist and guitarist in Conor Oberst’s Mystic Valley Band. Between gaps in Nik’s hectic touring schedule, AM Magic made the trek from San Francisco down the I-5 a handful of times to capture some LA magic to tape at his studio, Poppy Peak. Besides manning the boards, Nik lent his stellar pop-craftsmanship to the sessions, adding synths, organ, mellotron and piano to make the songs shine brighter.

To be sure, AM Magic is a “songs band,” where Karma Tsocheff and Mike Alexis mine more than a few musical and lyrical territories. With the dexterous rhythmic chops of Doug Saenz and Doug Poore, Karma and Mike are given a solid foundation to explore. The record opens with “Russell Draws a Sunset,” a horns-driven stomper about a friend’s escape from the law to Mexico. “Open Up Your Heart” follows with guitar hooks wrapped around metaphysical nudges to do what the title says. Elsewhere, babies are born, close-ones die and songbirds sing.

During the band’s existence the music has steadily grown more expansive while still retaining a tight grip on solid song-craft. Their debut, Floats, is a satisfying slice of rough-hewn indie-garage-pop. Magique Concrète, however, is AM Magic in full stride, showcasing the band’s hard-fought confidence with psych, power-pop and shoegaze intertwining seamlessly. The palette is bigger; the band has broken out of its shell.

1. Russell Draws a Sunset
2. Open Up Your Heart
3. Plastic Skyscrapers
4. Enabling
5. Blue Timbre
6. Statuesque
7. Make It Right
8. Aeroplane
9. Songbird

Mike Alexis

Digital distribution by IODA


Floats, LP, 2006
Magique Concrète, LP, 2009
3 songs EP, 2003

Set List

Sets are tailored to each specific show. AM Magic has a repertoire of 50+ original songs, although it depends on which ones are rehearsed. No covers.