Prolific is not exactly a term you’d apply to The Magic Numbers. Having hit the public consciousness with their 2005 hit Love Me Like You, they walked off Top of the Pops after getting the hump with Richard Bacon, and then pretty much walked off full stop.

Alias is only their second album since 2006, but having apparently had about 30 songs to choose from, they clearly haven’t been wasting their time. And it showcases a band who might not astound, but who stick to their solid songwriting traits. Drenched in close harmony and thoughtfulness, Alias sees the Ealing outfit tackle rock (Shot In The Dark), Seventies disco (E.N.D.), shoegazing (Accidental Song), and their own take on vintage influences – Roy Orbison echoes, well, Roy Orbison, and Thought I Wasn’t Ready gives more than a nod to Carole King.

Unspectacular and unfashionable they may be, but The Magic Numbers are one of those bands who it’s good to have around, and the more experimental moments of Alias suggest they might be appearing more regularly in future.

Review by Mark Stead