By Marlee Keeven
Many jam bands fall into a one-note category because they become too distracted with, well, jamming out. Many of these kinds of jam bands exist, and they can sometimes give this genre a bad name. The Magic Beans, however, take you on a journey – and then they bring you back home. Their music comes full circle, and they are certainly a band of many notes.
Coming from the Boulder/Fourmile Canyon area, The Magic Beans have only been together one year and they have already released a pretty darn cohesive and professional-sounding self-titled album.
As an electro-acoustic roots fusion band, they might remind you of bands such as The String Cheese Incident (especially on track #2) or Umphrey’s McGee…until the vocals chime in. The vocals are a group effort – with everyone (most of the time) singing along, they give the music a feeling of camaraderie. At times it sounds like a bunch of drunken people singing/yelling to a song in a bar, but for some reason these guys are able to pull it off, and it sounds great.
At no time will your face wrinkle up or your eyebrows furrow – the instrumentals and the songs flow nicely into the ears. The album as a whole is danceable and funky (especially “Lazer Lady”). These guys know how to jam out, but they are careful to keep it focused and meaningful (especially with their 12-minute jam, “Adonde”).
I imagine that The Magic Beans would put on a great live show, so check them out at Whistler’s Café in Nederland on December 17, and be sure to download their album for free on Bandcamp.