Backseat Beat is a video series highlighting indie musicians and the city by the Bay. Armed with Flip cameras, we interview bands in the back seat of our ‘83 Volvo as we spirit them away to unexpected, forgotten corners of San Francisco, where they plug in outdoors to play a few tunes. Each band’s performance transforms these urban spots from their anonymous day to day existence into surreal, magical backdrops.

When it sometimes feels like every other band in our fair foggy town is doing their best to mine obscure 60s garage nuggets in a bald attempt to please the PBR toting scenester crowds, it’s more than a little refreshing to find a band that draws its influences from an entirely different era. And if that band rocks the dirty, striped athletic socks off the same crowds with, of all things, witty and infectiously danceable new-wave-influenced pop music, well then, it’s even more impressive.

The MTV golden age may have missed its chance to include Magic Bullets as part of the first wave of eyelined, mousse-headed pop stars, but the band is using their significant chops to make the kids sweat out a few pounds on the dance floor with songs that are somehow 80s-Manchester-moody and insanely sunny at the same time. They play the kind of music that makes you want to put down your Tecate, pick up a Bartles & Jaymes, and crash Jake Ryan’s birthday party. (Ok. So the 80s had some great music and a booming economy. But what better way to begin the systematic dismantling of the New Deal than to tell teenagers that the answer to their problems lies in choosing the hot jock with a Porsche? Actually, music aside, the 80s are probably why we’re so fucked right now.)

But we digress. Magic Bullets isn’t about to start any bar fights, but they might have turned you into a giggly mess if you bumped into any of them at a record shop back in high school. They’re also the happiest band of back seat bullshitters you’ll ever meet. When we get a band in the back seat, we like a little sweetness to go along with the salty talk. And with Magic Bullets we got a whole lot of both… Kind of like your garden variety Mountain Dew–marinated Spam burrito. WTF, you say? Watch, and all will be revealed.

—Dana Goldberg

Magic Bullets - Backseat Beat

    Magic Bullets

    About Backseat Beat

Created by Brad Robertson
Produced by Dana Goldberg & Brad Robertson
Hosted by Jaime Lee Currier