Here We Go Magic Pigeons

Here We Go Magic Pigeons
Just over a year after Luke Temple released his self-titled debut album under the guise of Here We Go Magic, he's returned with a full band for a second LP that fleshes out his ideas the way they're meant to be heard. One of the issues with the first HWGM effort was how it transformed from ornate pop songs into wandering experimentalism halfway through, dividing it into halves. On Pigeons, Temple's temptation to survey different avenues is slightly curbed by the five-piece band, but for the better. Mostly gone are the noodly electronic tangents (with the exception of the unnecessary closing track), replaced by a strong group dynamic that tightens up the intricate arrangements, resembling the first and better half of the self-titled debut. A song like "Collector" keeps their curiosity for sonic exploration open, using a hyper-speed Krautrock tempo and all sorts of sweeping layers that converge as superfluous melodies. What's surprising is how safe a band as adept as HWGM play it sometimes. "Bottom Feeder" is some pretty cut-and-dry indie rock, and when paired with the charging, aerated avant-pop of "Old World United" or the sparkling Caribbean polyrhythms of "Vegetable or Native," it feels prosaic. But aside from a couple of missteps, Pigeons soars like the vermin it was named after. (Secretly Canadian)