Great Adventure: A Beginner’s Guide To Magnum

They might not have ever made it as big as Thin Lizzy or Whitesnake, and they never cracked the American market, but few rock bands have ever been quite as reliable as Magnum. Their journey to becoming one of Europe’s best and most treasured bands wasn’t always smooth, but after years of hard graft, they eventually found fame in the early to mid 80s, becoming a fan favourite both in the live setting and on record. Perhaps more impressive is the band’s consistency in the songwriting department. Guitarist Tony Clarkin (1946-2024) had an ability to write both rousing rockers and thoughtful narratives with equal skill, and his gifts for writing songs with huge, sweeping melodies made him a true giant of melodic rock. Their vast catalogue contains relatively few weak releases, and in many ways, shows why Magnum albums have often felt like one of rock music’s greatest comforts. But…if you’ve never taken the plunge, or perhaps only ever bought the ‘Marauder’ live album and ‘On A Storyteller’s Night’, what have you missed? Here’s the Real Gone guide to the Magnum essentials!


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MAGNUM – Here Comes The Rain

Magnum’s twenty second studio album, 2022’s ‘The Monster Roars’, came as a welcome surprise. Although huge chunks of the record sounded exactly like the latter day Magnum that fans adored, a few of the tracks took a bit more of a bold move, musically speaking. There were moments where the usual pomp gave way to a bigger rock sound, and on the lead single ‘Steppin’ Stones’, Magnum showed off an unexpectedly soulful edge, proving that the veteran rockers – although often working in a comfort zone – still had a couple of newer tricks up their collective sleeve. In addition, Bob Catley’s vocals sounded stronger than they had in a while. Although the global pandemic had set the band back in terms of promotion, the rest from touring had obviously been beneficial.

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Thin Lizzy were an exceptional rock band. The classic mid 70s line up managed to capture lightning in a bottle with Phil Lynott’s charisma and the trademark twin guitar sounds of Scott Gorham and Brian Robertson. Even when the band shifted line-ups to include Snowy White and, latterly, John Sykes for a heavier sound, they were still a top tier rock band. True legends.

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Real Gone’s End of Year Round-Up 2022

2022 has gone extremely quickly. With most people back at work in their offices and gigs being a regular occurrence, everything has felt far more like those old pre-2020 days. Almost as if to celebrate a shift back towards “normality” (though we’re no means out of the woods with regard to viruses) lots of our favourite bands went into overdrive, and a few of them even produced albums that are up their with their finest work.

Below, you’ll find Real Gone’s ten favourite releases of 2022, along with a few others that really stood out. It really has been a great year for music; some of the stuff we’ve not included was also of a very high standard, and it really felt like there was something new to explore every week.


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MAGNUM – The Monster Roars

Following the release of their ‘Princess Alice & The Broken Arrow’ album in 2007, Magnum settled into a vein of huge, sometimes bombastic melodic rock that carried a little more of a European flavour than the sounds of their eighties peak. The songs became bigger, longer, even more narrative, and although the hooks weren’t always as immediate as the best parts of the beloved ‘On A Storyteller’s Night’ or ‘Vigilante’, at their heart, there was always something “distinctively Magnum”. Obviously, this had much to do with Tony Clarkin’s song writing, having written the lion’s share of everything since the 70s, but Bob Catley’s friendly vocal presence could never be undervalued. Over the years, other band members came and went – each one bringing something great and different to the Magnum sound – but it was often the work of these two creative friends that kept the heart of the band pumping, much to the delight of fans.

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