Natural Magic

The self-titled debut of this Roseville-based septet exists in a time warp; it’s the kind of record made by people who’ve existed on a steady diet of album-rock radio, where the Ramones and everything that came after never existed and Starship still rules the roost. It’s pretty much boilerplate buttrock—Nikki Ahrens plays Grace Slick to Norm Schiavone’s Marty Balin, with Derek DeHay’s guitar-store pyrotechnics filling up spaces behind them. Lyrics range from Twofer Tuesday libertarianism (“Life’s Highway,” “My Own Way”) to “Dust in the Wind”-style pondering (“The Clown Inside”) to Dungeons & Dragons imagery (“Through the Fire”). After the final cut, a sincere but overwrought 9-11 anthem called “One September Mournin’” (penned by local activist Dr. Bruce L. Thiessen) concludes and an unbelievable bonus track featuring a puppy howling along to a plastic flute kicks in. Genius, in its own weird way.