Magic

A Flock Of Seagulls
“Magic”
1989 GNP Crescendo (US)
GNPD 1208

01 Magic (Radio Mix)
02 Magic (Extended Radio Mix)
03 Magic (Dance With Vocal)
04 Magic (Dance Instrumental)

There’s no shame in expressing admiration for A Flock Of Seagulls—the group’s first three LPs are eminently listenable. However, the band started to fall apart after the departure of guitarist Paul Reynolds (a vastly underrated talent) in 1984. Brothers Mike and Ali Score and bassist Frank Maudsley soldiered on to produce “Dream Come True”, released in 1986. Unfortunately, the album tanked, the band broke up, and the dream died.

Unbeknownst to me at the time, Mike Score was living in my hometown of Philadelphia, PA during the mid-to-late 1980s, having relocated from Liverpool. In 1988, Score assembled a new Flock, comprised of fellow UK expats and local talent from the Philly area. The new lineup recorded a single, “Magic”, issued in 1989. Hardly magical, the tepid tune went unnoticed, but would reappear six years later on “The Light At The End Of The World”, the fifth and final album released by Score as A Flock Of Seagulls.

Posted on April 20, 2017, in A Flock Of Seagulls. Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. I liked this album, “Burning Up” was a great pop gem, you wouldn’t have that CD single by chance?, lost mine a long time ago and I remember the single version differed from the album version… a tad better and tighter mix. Thanks as always for this Shelf!

    • Sorry Sandman – I don’t have the “Burning Up” single. Finally got round to buying that album only last year – found it disappointing (although not sure why I would have expected more). Like “Burning Up”, the re-recorded version of “Magic” is also watered down.

      Did you know that Mike Score released a proper solo album in 2014? Nothing to write home about, but also not the worst thing I’ve ever heard.

  2. I had no idea about the Mike Score solo album, have to seek that one out.

  3. i have that

    A Flock Of Seagulls ‎– Burnin’ Up
    Label:
    Big Shot Records ‎– BSR 0001-1
    Format:
    CD, Single
    Country:
    US
    Released:
    1995
    Genre:
    Electronic
    Style:
    New Wave, Synth-pop
    Tracklist
    1 Burnin’ Up (Single Version) 3:43
    2 Burnin’ Up (Album Version) 5:03
    3 Burnin’ Up (Instrumental) 5:03

    and

    A Flock Of Seagulls ‎– Wishing (If I Had A Photograph Of You) / The More You Live, The More You Love / I Ran
    Label:
    Jive ‎– ZD43916
    Format:
    CD, Maxi-Single
    Country:
    UK & Europe
    Released:
    1990
    Genre:
    Electronic
    Style:
    New Wave, Synth-pop
    Tracklist
    1 Wishing (If I Had A Photograph Of You) 5:30
    2 The More You Live, The More You Love 4:05
    3 I Ran (Edit) 3:57
    4 Wishing (If I Had A Photograph Of You) (Extended Version) 9:35

  4. By the time that final AFOS album saw release, Mike Score was living in Central Florida where I was at the time. I finally saw the 90s pickup version of AFOS play a free radio sponsored concert in 1993 in the downtown Orlando city square. Without Paul Reynolds, it was all pretty pointless to me. He was the band, as far as I’m concerned. Even so, I rebought the debut album on CD [I had gotten rid of my LP by 1985] at a garage sale for $1 in 2002 and listened to it twice, and sold it off again. The one killer song [“Modern Love Is Automatic”] did not an album make, I guess.

  5. In assembling my ultimate ‘supergroup’, Paul Reynolds would be on the short list for lead guitarist (and there’s an idea for a future blog post).

    I saw AFOS 2.0 (i.e. Mike Score solo with a band of nobodies) live in 1988 – it wasn’t awful, but it also wasn’t the ‘real’ Flock Of Seagulls. But the show was probably better than what you experienced in Orlando. Here’s my recap of that concert:

    https://yeahthatstheticket.wordpress.com/2015/08/29/1988-11-18-a-flock-of-seagulls/

    Although “Listen” is my favorite AFOS album, I’ll certainly defend their first LP – the four singles are great, and while there’s some filler, it’s a solid debut. Remarkably, all but one track from that album (“Tokyo”), and all the B-sides are included on the 2015 collection “Wishing.”

    Here’s something for you to ponder – are there any reissues by artists you historically like, that you wouldn’t buy due to current lack of interest and/or the passage of time? I basically had to force myself to get the new AFOS compilation “Remixes & Rarities.” When labels let valuable material by catalog artists collect dust in vaults, it may eventually be forgotten.

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