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MAGICK BROTHER AND MYSTIC SISTER

Psychedelic/Space Rock • Spain


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Magick Brother and Mystic Sister biography
MAGICK BROTHER AND MYSTIC SISTER are a Barcelona based band who take their name from a Gong album. While they are certainly psyche spacey their main influence is probably "If I Could..." era Caravan. They trace their origin story back to 2000 when Eva (keyboards/vocals) and Xavi (bass/guitar) met Daevid Allen at a Canterbury festival where Gong, Caravan and Arthur Brown were playing. Their debut album has a very retro sixties sound heavily featuring flute and mellotron. They were joined in 2013 by Maya (flute) and Marc (drums) to make up the band complete as a four piece.

Eva Muntada: piano, synthesizers, organ, mellotron & vocals
Xavi Sandoval: bass & guitars
Marc Tena: drums & vocals
Maya FernŠndez: flute

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4.04 | 99 ratings
Magick Brother and Mystic Sister
2020
4.67 | 20 ratings
Tarot, Part I
2024

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MAGICK BROTHER AND MYSTIC SISTER Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Tarot, Part I by MAGICK BROTHER AND MYSTIC SISTER album cover Studio Album, 2024
4.67 | 20 ratings

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Tarot, Part I
Magick Brother and Mystic Sister Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars The Neo-Canterbury band from CatalŠn is back with their sophomore album--and I'm so excited. (Their 2020 self-titled debut, is one of my top 5 favorite albums of the 2020s, so far.)

1. "The Fool" (5:39) great bass with a bit of a mix of THE BEATLES' "Tomorrow Never Knows" and ALAN PARSONS PROJECT feel with their uses of panned synthesizers, reversed lead guitar, and vocoder, respectively. Once the vocals, drums, and chugging rhythm guitar join in, it becomes more like a psychedelic song from someone like The PRETTY THINGS on S.F. Sorrow or GENESIS' first album or, from the 21st Century, WEST INDIAN GIRL. Very warm and inviting. (8.875/10)

2. "The Wizard" (3:05) male vocal recitation over the spacey opening, but then piano, drums, and bass take us into a more psych-rock motif before switching over to a very NEKTAR-like passage starting at 1:25. This is excellent psychedelia! Too bad it doesn't have more of a "finished" quality to it. (9/10)

3. "The High Priestess" (3:38) dreamy female vocals (many tracks) with some Baroque instrumentation beneath. Very beautiful--and so Sixties-ish! The vocal arrangements could rival anything from THE MAMAS & THE PAPAS, STEELEYE SPAN, or MELLOW CANDLE (or, in the 21st Century, The MEDI∆VAL B∆BES). Eva Muntada's vocal arrangements are amazing! (9.5/10)

4. "The Empress" (3:42) more dreamy, floating vocals over more normal folk-rock-like instrument palette. I am so impressed with Eva's amazingly etheric vocal layering! It's so Siren-like in its calm and ultra-confident allure. Whale-like lead guitar arrives in the third minute. Nice! And thank you, Maddy Gray, for those seductive words to finish! (9.125/10)

5. "The Emperor" (2:52) a little more reminiscent of the band's first album, the rich palette of Fender Rhodes, thick bass, "distant" horn synth, and fuzz guitar make for a wonderfully alluring sound. The spoken voice of Dominic O'Dair fills the pause in the middle with pertinent descriptors and nouns from the lexicon of the Tarot world. (9.125/10)

6. "The Hierophant" (3:21) guest Tony Jagwar's searing sitar soloing over fast-rocking bass and drums and hypnotic floating waves of synths! This reminds me of KULA SHAKER at their absolute best! Xavi Sandoval is the listener's champion: he makes his bass sound and lines so infectious! (9.5/10)

7. "The Lover" (3:21) Mellotron and keyboard bells (and distant flute) make for a very dreamy, Days of Future Passed- like soundscape. Then harpsichord takes over to back the angelic multi-tracked voices of Eva Muntada before the music switches to pure Indian with Didac Ruiz' tabla play and Xavi's sitar. Unexpectedly fragmented but it all works! It is an amazing cross-cultural view of the cosmic phenomenon we call "love"! (9.125/10)

8. "The Chariot" (3:06) more bass-led music that could very well have come from the band's debut album, Xavi, Alejandro, and Eva create a wonderful groove over which wah-ed lead gutar, flute, and organ take turns soloing. I love the flanged drums! Great tune! Xavi's electric guitar really cooks in that 30 seconds! This one reminds me very much of something from Devonshire band MAGIC BUS. (9.25/10)

9. "The Justice" (4:56) Xavi's great bass, front and center, seducing us from his first notes, with reverbed drums and piano and dreamy 1960s flute open this one before Eva's balmy vocals--in a lower register--come in to sing us her folk wisdom. Great pop-jazziness to this one. Should/could be a hit! Eva's Mellotron and Xavi's heavily-effected chorused lead guitar come in with about a minute to go but it's 'tron and flute that take us to the end fade. Wow! A perfect song! (10/10)

10. "The Hermit" (3:11) floating strummed guitar chords with matching lead guitar notes and Mellotron male voices open this instrumental like some kind of Steve Hackett impressionistic piece. More vocals and heavily-flanged cymbal play join in during the second half. Great atmosphere with a very mystical result. (8.875/10)

11. "The Wheel of Fortune" (4:21) lightly-flanged 12-string pickings for an intro before the music shifts into a psychedelic pop waltz with Glenn Brigman's dreamy DONOVAN-like flanged voice singing. It's so Sixties dreamy Psychedelic Pop! Masterful! Even the rising chord progression that carries the song has something magically mind- altering to it! Absolutely, astonishingly wonderful! (9.5/10)

Total Time 41:12

The band has definitely chosen to proceed down the more space/psychedelic form of Canterbury that Daevid Allen, Steve Hillage, Pierre Moerlin, and Gillie Smyth travelled over their careers--maybe even moreso! I have to agree with fellow reviewers that this is one of the finest collections of Neo-1960s-Psychedelia that I've heard--and that it surely qualifies of one of 2024's prog masterpieces!

A/five stars; a minor masterpiece of wonderfully-suggestive Canterbury-tinged Space/Psychedelic prog.

 Tarot, Part I by MAGICK BROTHER AND MYSTIC SISTER album cover Studio Album, 2024
4.67 | 20 ratings

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Tarot, Part I
Magick Brother and Mystic Sister Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Progfan97402
Prog Reviewer

5 stars I was certain Magick Brother & Mystic Sister were one and done and have disappeared. I'm glad to see that wasn't the truth. I know COVID greatly affected many bands, Magick Brother & Mystic Sister included. It also seems they went through a lineup change, with a new drummer and flautist Maya Fernandez listed now as a guest. Eva Muntada and Xavi Sandoval are still there. It's 2024 and their second album Tarot Part I is nothing short of a masterpiece! They pretty much dropped much of the Canterbury leanings of their debut for a much more psych album (but the prog elements are still there). It's not as jazzy as their debut either. But that doesn't matter, what they did is take that psych and prog sound to the next level, with a more pastoral and frequently spacy approach than before. Tarot Part I is simply some of the finest modern-day psych music I have ever heard! I could even imagine those who grew up in the 1960s appreciating this. "The Fool" has some really nice use of vocoder, which is unusual for psych, but it goes great with the nice vocals. "The High Priestess" is more in the psychedelic folk vein, largely acoustic. "Battle of Evermore" from Zeppelin is what this song reminds me of. Of course you don't have Robert Plant with Sandy Denny, but you do have the nice ethereal vocals from Eva Muntada. "The Emperor" has that same vibe as the 1967 Elektra album The Zodiac - Cosmic Sounds. It even has similar spoken dialog. "The Hermit" has that strange ethereal vocal in a psych setting, while "The Wheel of Fortune" starts off a bit on the folk side, but then gets proggy at the end with a dramatic Mellotron passage. So, while I don't get much of a Soft Machine vibe this time around, the occasional reminders of The Zodiac - Cosmic Sounds, acoustic Zeppelin, Ultimate Spinach (particularly "Pamela" from their self-entitled debut), and psych in general, is what I do notice. There is that MB&MS style, most particularly with Eva Muntada who does actual singing, but still does her ethereal wordless voices as well.

I hope the second installment isn't too far away. If the material on this first installment is anything to go by, I hope Tarot Part II is just as mind-blowing. They really perfected that wonderful psych sound I've been looking for. There really isn't anything to find fault of the album. I simply had to point out the Canterbury style was toned down quite a bit, but that doesn't matter when the music is this good! I really think this is a true masterpiece that everyone should check out!

 Magick Brother and Mystic Sister by MAGICK BROTHER AND MYSTIC SISTER album cover Studio Album, 2020
4.04 | 99 ratings

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Magick Brother and Mystic Sister
Magick Brother and Mystic Sister Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Beautiful Scarlet

3 stars 3/5*, great debut.

Surprisingly not to Gong-like. I mean yeah it sounds a bit like Gong but not as much as I expected for a band that has named their album/band/songs after Gongs work. The female vocals are nice, echoey and lovely. The male vocals I find rather meh, with their west coast psych vibe not going well with the more European sound of Magick Brother & Mystic Sister. The songs are all a bit spacey due to the synths coating the tunes in atmosphere. Drums are sparse but this gives more rhythmic attention to the bass which really feels important throughout the album. Guitar strums lackadaisically, at times providing a little lick when required and Flute supplies gentle lead. I like that every song sounds sufficiently alike to make a cohesive album without sounding monotonous and how the songs are rhythmically driven with leads feeling like the basses support.

Overall this is a good album that manages to succeed in not sounding like a clone of any classic band, instead they've achieved an authentic blend that allows to genuinely pass as a forgotten artifact. I would definitely like to see a follow up with expanded songs and no more of the dude singing.

Canterbury Sound Score 3/5 cuz itz too psych n not jazzy riff salad enuf' but sum t stuff on-point so ye 3/5

 Magick Brother and Mystic Sister by MAGICK BROTHER AND MYSTIC SISTER album cover Studio Album, 2020
4.04 | 99 ratings

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Magick Brother and Mystic Sister
Magick Brother and Mystic Sister Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by friso
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Magic Brother and Mystic Sister is a retro-prot outfit from Spain playing a mixture of Canterbury prog (think of early Soft Machine or Gong), psychedelic folk/rock (think of early Pink Floyd) and soul. The sound of the record is simply amazing; great sixties organs and even some mellotron, soulful bass guitar, slightly distorted vocals and beautiful flutes. The compositions from the first six/seven songs are great as well and hadn't the album ended somewhat less inspired, it would have gotten the masterpiece rating for sure. Those last tracks aren't even that bad, but they sound more like soundtrack material for a vintage film. The whole album sounds like a sort of lost gem of the golden age of music. It needn't be looked at from a perspective of progressive rock per se because its just that tasteful and cool. The artwork fits the music as well. The second reprint of blue vinyl sounds warm and retro, but crackles a bit too much for a new vinyl. Magick Brother and Mystic Sister is a band to look out for, because few bands have managed to create a retro prog record as well as this one (Jordsjo comes to mind). By the way, because the album sounds this cool, you might just get away with it playing it in the living room. I hope we'll get to hear more from this group!
 Magick Brother and Mystic Sister by MAGICK BROTHER AND MYSTIC SISTER album cover Studio Album, 2020
4.04 | 99 ratings

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Magick Brother and Mystic Sister
Magick Brother and Mystic Sister Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Progfan97402
Prog Reviewer

5 stars I couldn't resist the name of a band who named themselves after a Gong album or that wonderful psychedelic cover! So I was hoping this wasn't another one of those boring stoner rock albums trying to be "psychedelic". Far from it! Let me tell this is just the psychedelic and prog I was wanting! This band hails from Barcelona, Spain with two guys and two ladies, with Maya Fernandez on flute, Eva Muntada on keyboards and vocals, Xavi Sandoval on bass and guitars, and Marc Tena on drums and vocals. They all recorded all this in a studio in Park Guell, a park that was built by none other than Antoni Gaudi. "Utopia" gives this truly wonderful psychedelic vibe right out of the box, so to speak with minor chord guitar riffs and dreamy wordless female voices, then the band goes into a wonderful organ and synth solo, often compared to something off Caravan's If I Could Do It All Over Again, I'd Do It All Over You ("As I Feel I Die" in particular, but that's the one Caravan song that most resembles Soft Machine). Then it goes in Gong territory with that David Allen-style glissando guitar, exactly the thing I want to hear in a psychedelic album! "Waterforms" keeps that wonderful psychedelic vibe, with more nice female vocals, and Mellotron flutes. "The First Light" is in Pink Floyd territory, with Marc Tena trying to sound like David Gilmour with a psychedelic voice filter. "Yogi Tea" really blows me away with that nice late '60s sounding flute. A bit of a Soft Machine feel can be felt in this piece, but there's also some nice synths as well. "Arroyo del Buho" has a bit of that Spanish and Middle Eastern feel to it. Then a bit of that symphonic prog feel is to be had with the Mellotron, then it goes into more jazzy territory. "Echoes from the Past" starts off with some dreamy electric piano before it goes into clear Soft Machine territory (reminding me of something off Volume Two) until the female vocals kick in, then it sounds like Soft Machine with female vocals. "Love Scene" is an instrumental jazzy organ piece reminding me of something Hansson & Karlsson would do. "Instructions for Judgement Visions" is really interesting for that narration and strange synth piece.

Listening to this album you may easily be fooled for a recording from the late '60s and early 70s. No nasty digital production to be found here, no modern sound or production, it's as retro as they come. And how can you resist Maya Fernandez's flute playing? Her style is clearly not in the Ian Anderson style, her style reminds me of something Jimmy Hastings would do.

Fans of Gong, Soft Machine, and Caravan will find lots of dig here. The music is quite accessible to the point even the prog-phobic would love this, but still plenty proggy enough for the proghead to enjoy. It's not complex symphonic prog (although small hints are to be found), the Canterbury sound is felt, but with a psychedelic approach. 2020 may be an awful year for too many people, with COVID, but some of the most amazing music I've heard in recent years have surfaced and Magick Brother & Mystic Sister delivers big time. This album left me blown away, and the fact it's 2020 as well, and not somewhere between 1968 and 1972.

 Magick Brother and Mystic Sister by MAGICK BROTHER AND MYSTIC SISTER album cover Studio Album, 2020
4.04 | 99 ratings

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Magick Brother and Mystic Sister
Magick Brother and Mystic Sister Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Rivertree
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator / Band Submissions

4 stars This album delivers kinda blend of canterbury and early psychedelic, wonderfully compounded in its entirety. The band name says it all. A quartet from Barcelona, Spain has realized this inspiring issue, two magic brothers and two mystic sisters, to make it concrete. Eva Muntada convinces, on one side with her ethereal voice. Furthermore she manages the whole keyboard equipment, which is diversified, definitely, ranging from classical piano to Hammond, Mellotron and then to spacey synthesizer impressions. Maya FernŠndez then serves a couple of nice mellow flute contributions, where Xavi Sandoval cares for the complete string instruments. Marc Tena's drumming comes somewhat subtle, restrained, though perfectly matching the entire atmosphere.

Regarding the ten songs given the instrumental part is dominating. They are mirroring a superb, rather retro sounding experience, a well thought out flow. And so it's nearly impossible to highlight any particular track in this case. Hereby they are drawing some inspirations from bands like Caravan, Soft Machine, Pink Floyd, Beatles, and Gong a little of course. Finally you may call the result jazzy psychedelic prog in retro outfit. Some other Instructions for judgment visions needed? I don't think so. Keep it up, brothers and sisters.

 Magick Brother and Mystic Sister by MAGICK BROTHER AND MYSTIC SISTER album cover Studio Album, 2020
4.04 | 99 ratings

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Magick Brother and Mystic Sister
Magick Brother and Mystic Sister Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Soul2Create

4 stars 4.5 stars actually.

This album has become one of my favourites since it came out. It features an amazing blend of Retro-prog and Canterbury that for me is up there with the best works of early Caravan and Khan, two of the best Canterbury bands of all time, and this is where this album wins. It s not an attempt to copy the style of these bands, but an original piece of music. In fact, I have always looked for bands reminiscent of Caravan, and now I can say that this is the one that most closely sounds like them while maintainig a high degree of originality.

Last, I want to recommend everyone to listen to Utopia, one of the best songs released in the past ten years IMO, and the one that I usually find myself listening for hours.

Simply one of the best albums of the year.

 Magick Brother and Mystic Sister by MAGICK BROTHER AND MYSTIC SISTER album cover Studio Album, 2020
4.04 | 99 ratings

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Magick Brother and Mystic Sister
Magick Brother and Mystic Sister Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars Delightful retro psychedelic funk bordering on Egg, Khan, and Caravan Canterbury Style music from this Spanish quartet. Bassist Xavi Sandoval sets up some very nice grooves for listeners to get hooked into while Eva Muntada's Burt Bacharach- and Northettes-like vocals an Maya Fern'ndez's flutes lend their ethereal magic as well.

1. "Utopia" (4:56) opens like SOFT MACHINE's "Slightly All the Time" before going its own direction with Eva's lovely vocalise tracks and Maya's swallow-like flute. I'm in heaven! At 2:25 the song switches gears as it moves into CARAVAN territory to support some awesome synth and fuzz-organ work. The final minute sees us being carried off into the floating world of GONG guitars. Wow! What a trip into yesteryear! Amazing song! (9.5/10)

2. "Waterforms" (4:06) opens with a funkiness that could come from a 1970s Black Exploitation film! Isaac, Curtis, or Marvin! Amazing! Drive that Caddy with that Detroit lean! When Eva's voice penetrates my consciousness, my bubble is burst and I am back in Europe--though with a definite 1970s-feeling 21st Century West Coast Psychedelic Funk (a la BRIAN ELLIS and STARVING DAUGHTERS). (9.25/10)

3. "The First Light" (2:24) early PINK FLOYD psychedelia. A little too imitative. (4.25/5)

4. "Yogi Tea" (5:16) like a Burt Bacharach lounge funk psychedelia! Great keys, bass, and flute interplay with perfect jazzy drum support. I love Marc's voice--and vocal! He sounds like a god! (Or like KHAN's Nick Greenwood!) West Coast Psychedelic Funk at its finest! One of my favorite songs of the year! (9.5/10)

5. "Arroyo del b'ho" (4:49) almost a Ravel/Satie/or Gordon Brothers flute & piano duet. (8.75/10)

6. "Echoes From The Clouds" (4:07) another song that brings back so many flower power melodies of the late 60s and early 1970s--from Sergio Mendez's Brazil '66 to Caravan and "MacArthur's Park." Great flute and bass play. (9/10)

7. "Movement 2" (2:39) except for the flutes, this could be straight from a BRIAN ELLIS album! Awesome three-part James Bond/Austin Powers-like film soundtrack. Great presence from the congas. Excellent flute play. (5/5)

8. "Love Scene" (3:32) another perfect soundtrack imitation from late 1960s/early 1970s psychedelic filmdom. Awesome Hammond work, Eva! (9/10)

9. "Instructions For Judgment Visions" (4:33) hippy flute folkpsych with GONG-like narration. (Or is it Eric Burden's WAR's "Spill That Wine"?) (8.75/10)

10. "Les Vampires" (6:40) Burt Bacharach-Brian Auger collaboration for a soundtrack to a B-movie horror flick? (9.25/10)

Total Time 43:02

A-/five stars; a minor masterpiece of retro-psychedelic prog. So wonderful to hear this gorgeous funk!

Thanks to nogbad_the_bad for the artist addition. and to NotAProghead for the last updates

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