news
discography
songs
tours
videos
people
family tree
timeline
press releases
reviews
faq
mailing list
fanzines
site map
links
about
contact

magic


composers
Written by: Kerr / Burchill


publisher
BMG Rights Management (UK) Ltd


background
The melody was composed during the Good News From The Next World sessions. Realising it had potential, it was added to the pool of ideas and incomplete songs which would be revisited from time-to-time.

It was picked up again during the Black And White 050505 sessions, where it became known as Fortune Teller.

Magic was also briefly considered for the album's title.

There really is no magic formula to writing songs and making records. Least not so in our experience, and we have written hundreds of them. Mostly it comes down to a little inspiration and a ton of hard work.

What is certain is that songs don't write themselves. No, you have to turn up and work on them, knowing that you might get lucky and a finished one will seemingly just pop out of nowhere.

The real likelihood however is that mostly you will be in it for the long haul, putting in the necessary hours and honing the original idea until the structure and the feel are suddenly just right.

And then even when you get to that stage, a feeling of doubt may appear, telling you that what you have is good... but not great.

And with that you sometimes decide to leave the idea, perhaps come back to it another time. Charlie and I go through that particular process with our songs most often. We certainly went through that and so much more with Magic - Track 1 on our forthcoming album Walk Between Worlds.

That said, during the process sometimes inexplicable events happen, and an idea or two does comes flying out of somewhere or other, indeed as if by magic.

The job is to be alert enough to know how to catch that fleeting expression of mental energy. I guess that really is what artists are meant to do.

It was by accident that our producer Andy Wright and Gavin Goldberg got to hear a previous demo of Magic, first worked on over a decade ago, it went under another title entirely back then.

Charlie and I had forgotten all about it, given up on it even?

They then convinced us that the song definitely had "the magic" and that we absolutely needed to return to it. To give it one more go! To find the missing piece that until then had eluded us.

It is good to work hard. The reward feels more valid in the end. Meanwhile, I cannot wait to play Magic live. The walls will shake!

Jim Kerr
16th December 2017

It was chosen as the first single from the album. It was premiered on RTL Radio in France on the 15th December; an unannounced move, and given that download links were quickly removed, it was probably erroneously released before an embargo was lifted.

Magic finally received its official worldwide premiere on the 4th January 2018 when it was exclusively played on Chris Evans' BBC Radio Two breakfast show. The video and digital downloads of the song were released on the same day.

Three slightly different versions were released: The full length album version appeared on Google, Amazon and other digital retailers and was available for purchase; an exclusive edit of the album version was used for the video; and a remixed edit was used for radio play and Spotify streaming.

It was BBC Radio Two's Single Of The Week starting Monday 15th January.



SL: We talk about how the album is split in two really, in a way, but the first four tracks do go back to some point in your past. I think as well as that, Magic sounds really contemporary, I think, in a lot of ways.
CB: Well Steve, we've had that track since the early nineties. Jim?
JK: The melody kept slipping through our fingers. Charlie came up with it then.
CB: We could never crack it. We couldn't do it. And we tried it a few times on albums. Finally this time around, the guy we're working with, he heard it and he said "No. This is a definite." And we couldn't crack the chorus Ė they worked on it and they found a great move in the chorus and it made all the difference.
JK: The strange thing is Ė and this is hard, it's just a sense Ė some songs take their time. You know "This is a good tune but it's not just its time." It's time in relation to the other stuff you're doing and time in relation to what you feel's going on in the world. And in the case of Magic too, it was a lyrical thing. We would hear it and Charlie and I would go "Magic? You can't say magic." "Magic?" "Magic what?" How can you get mileage out of the world "Magic," it's been so overused about a gazillion times. So I would go "That's the end of that." And then three months later it would come up and we'd go "That sounds great."

JK: Last Wednesday night was the fortieth anniversary of our first ever gig. And Ė you know Ė we didn't do anything. [Laughs] We texted each other... we didn't even do that! [Laughs] I was thinking Ė this had been on the horizon for a long time Ė and finally when we went with Magic, the character in the song is kind of us. I was thinking of when we were starting a band. We weren't in London, we were in Glasgow Ė and as much as Glasgow's amazing, it's an amazing scene - it wasn't then. We didn't know anyone who was in a band, we didn't know anyone who'd written their own songs, there was no teacher, you couldn't go on YouTube and download a lesson. So where did we get the chutzpah to think what we were doing was on? I really did believe it was on. And people said "You must be an arrogant so-and-so." And I wasn't , because you could hear what was coming out of his amp. And you just described it.
SL: I tell you what was interesting to me as well was - it sort of reminds me of something. And it took me ages before I got there. Lyrically it reminds me a little bit of Richard Ashcroft who does that lonely man with a belief.
JK: You still need that. Lou Reed, and he said it, it's definitely about faith. Not in the religious way. "You need a busload of faith to get by," Lou Reed said, a great line. And there's a link to another song at the end, Sense Of Discovery, which is a more wizened man [Laughs], still has faith but kind of a bit beaten up. But not as easily hyped. So going back to Magic, finally, I thought I can believe in this. And I can put this across. And as Charlie said, the tune was always there. But we've got a good team around us, and they go through things, and they kick the tires and they go like "Nah" or else they go "What are you doing? This is a great thing here. Pursue it." It's good to have that.

Jim Kerr, Charlie Burchill and Steve Lamacq
Steve Lamacq Show
BBC Radio 6
24th January 2018

MM: Some Simple Minds songs have an extended gestation period to develop. The song Magic was one of those, and the final track Sense of Discovery has been around since the Lostboy era.

JK: We are getting a great reaction from those songs, but you always get someone saying, "I heard about those songs years ago, they're old songs you are churning out." And I'm like, "Hang on a minute you dick." (Laughs) Itís excellent when songs announce themselves, and they just come and go. The song Magic, for instance, was always pretty much there, but sometimes something is missing, and you donít know what it is, Sense of Discovery was the same. Sometimes the language of the song doesnít feel right for the times, or there are times when you hear the song later through different ears, and you think it feels right now."

Jim Kerr and Mark Millar
xsnoize.com
January 2018


JK: The title of the new album is Walk Between Worlds. It's the 17th studio album. There are a couple of tracks on the album that are about an abstract idea of faith and it's interesting that the first song, Magic, opens the album Ė it's from a young person's point of view Ė probably us realising, we were putting the band together, that the odds of finding success, the odds of making this thing work around the world are stacked against you.
JK: Yet you would have to have some faith to get by.
JK: The album ends with the song Sense Of Discovery. This is also about faith. But it's from a much older person's point of view.

Jim Kerr
Walk Between Worlds EPK
February 2018

GG: "Magic, as a song, and also Summer, were both pieces that emerged quite early Ė and to some extent, we used a more elemental approach, where youíve got a beat, a synth, a guitar, a vocal Ė and even though there is other stuff in there, itís basic elements and itís really important that each of those has something very specific that itís doing in the track. Weíll still occasionally throw the kitchen sink in, but the simplicity probably mirrors the bandsí earlier recordings. Also, Magic started itís life as an idea the guys were playing around with around ten years before, so that might have something to do with it!"

AW: "I was always big fan of Simple Minds growing up Ė I listened to them back when I was playing keyboards in my own bands and I was always inspired by their work. So itís been very natural to reflect their past, and those earlier incarnations, without needing to think much about it."

Andy Wright and Gavin Goldberg
Producers Interview
March 2018




lyrics
Now I believe in forces
I need the truth, the reason why
Was so amazed, such a lucky child
And then something died, like everybody it hurt inside
And I would walk through the city with my wounded pride
But everybody is too busy and youíre wondering why
Thereís a hole inside, I need a pill not an alibi
Now itís all coming together, and it breaks like a storm
This is our kind of weather
Now itís all coming together

Cause now that I believe in magic
I believe in your lips, I believe things coming in waves
Now I believe in forces, I believe itís all set
Nothing here can make me sway
And now that I believe in magic
Nothing can confound this, nothing can explain away
Now I believe in forces, I believe in your steps
Taking me some other way

Lost inhibitions, Iíd lose my mind
Reality was no friend of mine
So I thought I knew?
But everybodyís just kidding you
And I remember when I stumbled on a slippery stone
I was in the jungle and I couldnít get home
Was in a zoo, without a single clue
Now itís all coming together, and it breaks like a storm
This is our kind of weather

Cause now that I believe in magic, I believe in forces

I believe in magic
I believe in your lips, I believe things coming in waves
Now I believe in forces, I believe itís all set
Nothing here can make me sway
And now that I believe in magic
Nothing can confound this, nothing can explain away
Now I believe in forces, I believe in your steps
Taking me some other way




discography
Radio Edit (3:23)
Mixed by Ash Howes
Produced by Andy Wright, Gavin Goldberg and Simple Minds
Mixed by Gavin Goldberg
Assisted by Lewis Chapman


Magic Promo CD Magic French Promo CD
Video Edit (3:35)
Produced by Andy Wright, Gavin Goldberg and Simple Minds
Mixed by Gavin Goldberg
Assisted by Lewis Chapman


Album Version (4:35)
Produced by Andy Wright, Gavin Goldberg and Simple Minds
Mixed by Gavin Goldberg
Assisted by Lewis Chapman


Walk Between Worlds Promo CD Magic 7" Walk Between Worlds LP Walk Between Worlds Limited Edition Deluxe LP (Blue) Walk Between Worlds Limited Edition Deluxe LP (Pink) Walk Between Worlds Limited Edition Picture LP Walk Between Worlds CD Walk Between Worlds Limited Edition Deluxe CD
Johnson Somerset Remix (10:20)
Produced by Andy Wright, Gavin Goldberg and Simple Minds
Mixed by Gavin Goldberg
Assisted by Lewis Chapman
Remixed by Johnson Somerset





videography
Video Edit (3:35)
Produced by Andy Wright, Gavin Goldberg and Simple Minds
Mixed by Gavin Goldberg
Assisted by Lewis Chapman
Maigc promo video



sessions
Chris Evans, Radio Two: 1st February 2018 (Acoustic version)
Front Row, Radio Four: 1st February 2018 (Acoustic version)



live history
Walk Between Worlds: 2018