The four song second EP from The Magnifiers, For the People, lays the groundwork for the four piece to have an extraordinarily bright future. The band serves up an alternative punk rock attack crouched within catchy, energetic tracks brightly lit up by a delicious comic edge. The members are all siblings ranging in age from seventeen to ten years old and they play like relation. There’s an innate chemistry that’s undeniable from the first and the songs get over without ever relying on pandering or shortcuts. There’s a surprising amount of wit in this music, going far beyond their years, and it infuses the songwriting with great verve and a lot of intelligence. Punk rock music, in the hands of most, has a relatively limited shelf life. This is often heard as the music of youth and selling it for audiences past the age of thirty is a tricky proposition. The Magnifiers, however, write tracks that have unabashed joy and sound durable.
The Dombrowski kids clearly know what they are doing. “Mostly Harmless”, the EP’s opener, is a model for how to build contemporary rock with an unquestionably punk rock spirit. It has a good build and, at a little over three minutes in length, still never rushes things to arrive at its inevitable points. Bassist and vocalist Eden Domborwski has an impressive voice for these songs because it brings just the right amount of spirit to the music without ever overreaching for effect. She projects a rough and tumble confidence while still retaining enough of the needed musicality to keep the song from descending into cacophonous nonsense. “TV Hat” has some light social criticism that the youthful members of The Magnifiers pull off quite nicely and lead guitarist Elliot lays down some chunky guitar work that has a much harder tenor than his playing on the opening. Eden’s voice is treated much more differently here than on the first track and the effect is achieves is just as convincing despite some treated vocals.
The Magnifiers score, arguably, their most direct hit yet with the song “Anarchy Sucks”, a fast paced punky number that doesn’t waste any time impacting the audience. The chorus, in particular, is one of the EP’s overall high points and it’s impossible to not admire the talents and surprising self-awareness that goes into making this song such a success. Despite the fast pace and nominally punk attitude informing the track, The Magnifiers continue to hold tightly onto their musical credentials and the performance never sounds like mindless thrashing. They pull a joker out of their deck of cards with the EP’s last song “Transfiguration”. This is another of those moments when the band shows the full extent of their maturity and crafts a song that their peers couldn’t hope to match. The acoustic sound is squarely at odds with the preceding tracks but shares the same infectious energy. It’s these sort of turns that make For the People a worthwhile purchase and bodes well for the band’s short and long term future.