Magnum The Storyteller’s Collection UMC It’s not our fault –
From page 77 of Classic Rock Magazine March 2011
blame Ling... Prefaced by the terrifying words ‘Compiled by Dave Ling of Classic Rock magazine’ comes The Storyteller’s Collection , another Magnum anthology. There’s no shortage of those, but allowing Ling, a long-time champion of the band, access to their vaults is a guarantee that the choices will be made with care, however much of a cavil they raise.
His liner notes reveal that Magnum have been together for so long that they a) cannot remember exactly when they formed and b) that their first single was a cover of Sweets For My Sweet – a gruesome thought. The band have worked steadily, too, so there is just room, over the 32 songs here, to offer a primer of their earliest years with Jet records – Kingdom Of Madness , Changes , Soldier Of The Line , Sacred Hour and The Spirit capture them best – before sketching their breakthrough record, On A Storyteller’s Night , via the title track, Just Like An Arrow and Les Morts Dansant ,
a song that manages to be heavily poignant despite its pretensions.
The second disc is wonderfully over the top. Magnum are not subscribers to the ‘less is more’ theory, and the almost Shakespearian melodrama peaks with their three-part WWI tearjerker, Don’t Wake The Lion . If Magnum’s quirky charms have somehow eluded you, this is a nice place to start.