June 4, 2012

Magic Carpet Ride

At a recent Scammers show, Phil "Diamond in the Rough" Diamond began with a sweep through the audience like a showroom crooner (he uses a wireless microphone), repeatedly offering his hand to various audience members while asking Do you trust me? I initially thought he was rounding people up for some sort of corporate trust fall exercise, but as the music and lyrics soon revealed, this was actually a clever reference to a pivotal magic carpet scene in Disney's Aladdin; regardless of motivation, this is a charming thing to do.

The live set that followed was the entirety of Magic Carpet Ride, consisting of songs which seem to say something in the language, iconography and symbology of Disney's Aladdin rather than be about Disney's Aladdin. It's as though Diamond's retrofitted the original cartoon for 3-D, using a proprietary Scammers post-process that draws out hidden dimensions of extremity and madness. While it's tempting to suck listeners in by excerpting one of the hookier numbers, Magic Carpet Ride is most rewarding as a full album:

Stream: Scammers - Magic Carpet Ride The album is currently streaming on Bandcamp and an outlet for physical release has not yet been determined. Scammers will be on tour in July and August. Phil Diamond also maintains this music blog and plays as part of the Umberto band for Kansas City shows.

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