Rising to the national stage (with help)

magic-man-620x412
The five-piece, Providence, RI-based synth pop act Magic Man, who are currently touring with Walk the Moon.

by Chris Leo Palermino

By the time a band develops this expansive of a sound, it would be only be surprising if industry and blogosphere folk didn’t catch on.

For Boston/Providence-based synth rock act Magic Man, it surely wasn’t an overnight success: vocalist Alex Caplow and guitar/keyboardist Sam Vanderhoop Lee began collaborating as a laptop duo in ’09 during college. The duo, which has since expanded to a full five-piece band, reappeared with the soaring single “Paris” in February and since formed a relationship with Neon Gold/Columbia.

We chatted with Lee after they released their major label debut, “You Are Here,” on how to write ‘triumphant’ songs, working with Alex Aldi (Passion Pit producer) and playing to crowds of young Walk the Moon fans.

Metro: On your bandcamp, you prominently call yourselves a ‘triumphant synth rock band‘ which is quite the proclamation. How does Magic Man live up to the expectations?

Sam Lee: It’s a reference to one of our favorite bands, Explosions in the Sky, who [at one point] posted a listing which said ‘triumphant rock band seeks drummer.’ It’s a little silly, but we try to pack as much emotion into our shows as possible. We only put out stuff to people that we’re enthusiastic about and that really helps, especially live.

Metro: Magic Man just released their first release on Neon Gold. How did they find you?

S.L.: Lizzie from Neon Gold [ed. note: also co-leader of indie pop act MS MR] found us on bandcamp and had a good response. We’re big fans of their blog, and we ended up working together. Everybody’s really happy about it.

Metro: “You Are Here” has Alex Aldi, who worked with Passion Pit, mixing and producing. How was working with him?

S.L.: So, we met Alex Aldi through Passion Pit’s manager. It was our first time working in a proper studio and we were picky because we’re so used to working on our own. He’s an incredible producer and helped with production, polishing, finding the right songs. He’s got the whole package, from production to mixing.

M: You guys sure have gotten a lot of opportunities. What would you say the best moment has been so far?

S.L.: Our first show with Walk the Moon, at the Pavilion in Columbus, Ohio [on August 30] — walking on stage to a packed crowd and playing new material. Also, when we finished the EP, I brought it home and played the whole thing to my parents. [They] said, “hey, this is pretty good.”

M: Well, both of those are pretty awesome moments. How has the tour opening for Walk the Moon been going?

S.L.: It’s really great. They have a younger fan base, so there’s always people there while we’re playing. A lot of the Walk the Moon fans are younger and want signed CDs — which we’ve never done before. We’ve almost sold out.

Listen to their debut EP, “You Are Here” and catch them with Walk the Moon tonight at Terminal 5. 

This is part of a Metro Boston and New York music column called Locally Amped. Follow us on Twitter @LocallyAmped.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Mayor announces public housing improvements

Mayor Bill de Blasio spoke at the Lincoln Houses in East Harlem on Wednesday, calling for the scaffolding to come down at NYCHA complexes across…

National

Peter Theo Curtis: American released by Syrian militants…

An American writer freed this week from two years in the captivity of insurgents in Syria spoke briefly outside his family's Cambridge home Wednesday of…

Local

Bratton defends 'broken windows' work as NYPD support…

Sixty percent of those polled said they support the "broken windows" theory approach popularized by Commissioner Bratton since his first term in the 1990s.

Local

Transit changes for Labor Day weekend

The MTA is adding additional service Friday for New Yorkers getting out of the city for the long weekend. On Friday, Aug. 29, 27 additional…

Going Out

Things to do this week in NYC, Aug.…

MUSIC The Electric Zoo Festival Aug. 29-31, 1 p.m. Randall’s Island Park $99-$369, www.electriczoofestival.com The electronic music celebration returns for a fifth year, with 150,000 attendees…

Going Out

5 things to do this weekend in NYC

The Electric Zoo Festival Aug. 29-31, 1 p.m. Randall’s Island Park $99-$369, www.electriczoofestival.com The electronic music celebration returns for a fifth year, with 150,000 attendees expected. David Guetta,…

Television

'Full House' might be relaunched with some of…

A new "Full House" might be in the works.

Movies

Review: 'The Congress' is a crazy, unwieldy sci-fi…

Robin Wright is the center of gravity in "The Congress," which turns from a live-action Hollywood satire into an animated spectacular on a downer future.

NFL

Source: Stephen Hill 'faces a battle' to make…

A team source says Stephen Hill, who has battled injuries and poor performances during his first two years, is no lock to make the Jets’ final roster.

Sports

Serena Williams leaving legacy of talented American women…

It seems only a matter of when, not if, Serena Williams will win her 18th career grand slam championship.

College

When are 2014 college football playoffs? (Schedule, date,…

When and where are 2014 college football playoffs? A look at the schedule, date, TV, time for the semi-finals at championship game.

NFL

Dimitri Patterson suspended only for rest of preseason…

Dimitri Patterson ended up getting just a slap on the wrist.

Wellbeing

Heart trumps brain when it comes to movies…

When you need a good cry, do you reach for the movie that’s “based on a true story”? Science says you’re giving your brain far…

Sex

The 10 types of people you meet online

Does it ever seem like online dating profiles tend to get a little repetitive? It turns out you are not the only one to have…

Home

Labor Day essentials

Whether you’re soaking up the sun on the beach or barbecuing in the park here are some must-haves for your end-of-summer bash.

Education

Does the school day start too early?

As thousands of high schoolers get ready to head back to class, health experts say it may be time to push back the start of…