Interview by Morgan Howard
Tell me a little bit about how you guys formed as a band.
Isaac: The stars. I met Melati in New York whilst travelling the world; one summer later we started writing some music together in Australia. I wandered across Europe and Central America recording solo, then persuaded Michael out of the jungle in Brazil. We all met up again in New York and starting living and rehearsing in empty venue that threw illegal '20s-themed parties. It looked like a Shanghai opium den. We played our first show three weeks later.
How did you come up with the name Young Magic?
A cliché woke up from a dream moment, which popped in from the logos at a time when the world seemed like a series of alchemist’s watercolors. I scribbled it down, and from that morning it became a name to work under.
You just finished up a tour with Quilt, any memorable moments?
We took the long routes down the West Coast, following Highway 1 through Big Sur, chasing the ghosts of Keroac and Miller down one of the most scenic drives in the country. We tripped under stars and skated Burnside, got lost in New Mexico with our friend following us on a motorbike in the dark. We spanned the Dakota badlands and Yellowstone via wild horses, Californian shamans, and orange thunderstorms. We played a show during a hurricane in DC that shut half the city down, and knocked the venues power out halfway through our set. Whispers scattered the room in a pitch dark scene. Ten seconds later light sound power bursts back on and everything continues as usual.
What is it like playing in a store compared to a traditional venue?
Intimate. And bright. Kind of like walking up with the lights on, to someones face hovering just above you. It can be really nice or really awkward, depending on the day.
You are featured on Purity Ring's song "Grandloves." What it was like collaborating with them?
I met Corin in Texas a few years ago and we’d always spoke about working on something. It started life as a remix of "You With Air," but he ended up just sampling the vocals from the song and dropping it on an original joint. I really liked the instrumental, and then Megan added her vocals which just took it to another level. They sounded so beautiful. It is a special song for me.
What are three songs you would like to cover as a band?
Catherine Ribeiro + Alpes – "Paix"
De Frank & His Professionals – "Afe Ato Yen Bio"
Mariah – "Shinzo No Tobira" (Although we do play this in the set once in a while.)
What is up next for Young Magic?
Hopscotch Festival in Raleigh, NC, then a tour out in Australia. In the spaces between, recording album two.
Anything else I should know?
Free Julian Assange!