Here We Go Magic is an American indie rock band based in New York, New York. The group was originally formed by core members Luke Temple, Michael Bloch and Peter Hale, in late 2008. The project signed to Western Vinyl in 2008, followed by the five-piece group’s signing to Secretly Canadian in 2009.
2009: Here We Go Magic
After previously releasing two folk albums under his own name in the mid-2000s, Luke Temple released the self-titled album Here We Go Magic in February 2009 on Western Vinyl, described by Pitchfork Media as “hazy electronic textures, endlessly-spiraling lyrical loops, occasional forays into extended sections of ambience and noise”. Temple recorded the album at home on a 4-track recorder, describing the recording: “I just had one tom, one microphone, a synth and an acoustic guitar. I didn’t have a full drum kit or normal bass, it was just all synth stuff that I did myself.” The album does feature a live band on one of its nine tracks, the song “Everything’s Big”, which features Here We Go Magic guitarist Michael Bloch along with musicians Tyler Wood (keyboards), Parker Kindred (drums) and Adam Chilenski (bass).
After several tours incorporating members Kristina Lieberson (keyboards) and Jen Turner (bass) the band signed together as a five-piece to Secretly Canadian in September 2009.They had toured in 2009 with Grizzly Bear and The Walkmen. The second album Pigeons was released on June 8, 2010. The band wrote and recorded the album over a period of several months living together in a secluded house in upstate New York. Pigeons was produced by bassist Jen Turner, and engineered by Victor Magro. The first single off Pigeons, “Collector”, was rated “Best New Music” by Pitchfork Media on March 18, 2010. The band performed at the SXSW festival in 2009 and again in March 2010, and completed tours of North America with White Rabbits and Europe with The New Pornographers. In summer 2010 the band played at multiple major festivals including PrimaveraSound, Bonnaroo, Pitchfork, The Great Escape, Latitude, Bestival, and Glastonbury,[ where Thom Yorke said they were his favorite act of the festival. They ended the year 2010 touring with the Canadian band Broken Social Scene.
2011: The January EP
In the months leading up to The January EP, Here We Go Magic played a few shows around North America, including sets at Coachella and Wilco’s Solid Sound Festival. The January EP was produced by the band’s bassist, Jen Turner. Here We Go Magic recorded the tracks live on an analog tape in a band built living room during the same time that hey were working on Pigeons. The EP was widely well received, gaining high marks from many publications and critics. Slant Magazine called the record “synthy, dreamy album captured a rich sound with very little bluster, effectively lulling and beguiling listeners with quiet, acoustic-driven psychedelia.”
2012: A Different Ship
After catching Here We Go Magic’s Glastonbury performance with Thom Yorke, Radiohead producer, Nigel Godrich, asked to produce the band’s fourth album. The group accepted, and A Different Ship became the product. The album garnered great critical acclaim. The New York Times said A Different ship, “discreetly shows off the band’s meticulous virtuosity; its patterns are played, not programmed.” BBC Music held the album to an equally hard regard. In one review they noted, “Played live these songs will metastasise into expansive jams, and will sound great when they do, but here and now they’re sharp, disciplined, and seriously compelling.” In November 2012, Here We Go Magic headed back out on tour, starting with a show at the Brooklyn Bowl. After their start on the east coast, they made their way to the Midwest for the Midpoint Music Festival. Tour dates through October 12 included singer-songwriter, Andrew Bird.