Record Reviews

Album review: Magnum “Here Comes the Rain”

Magnum’s stunning 23rd studio album is a fitting finale for maestro Tony Clarkin.

2024 was supposed to be a big year for Magnum. With a new album coming out and a tour planned many fans were excited. But that has all changed now. Magnum is coming to an end. Merely days before the smashing new Magnum album is to be released, the band’s musical motor, Tony Clarkin, passed away following a short period of illness. Without its leader, Magnum cannot continue.

Magnum, formed by Tony and Bob Catley in Birmingham, England in 1972, masterfully combined classic rock and melodic hard rock with some progressive bits, with Tony’s guitar, Bob’s voice and excellent keyboards dominating the music. Beautiful orchestration on their studio recordings was also often part of Magnum’s productions. I saw Magnum live a few times in the early 90s and I have interviewed them several times. Magnum is one of the best British rock bands. The dynamic combination of Tony’s guitar and songwriting and Bob’s voice was always terrific. When Bob performed in Tokyo with Avantasia in 2019, I realised how much I missed seeing Magnum live.

“Here Comes the Rain”, the band’s 23rd studio album, was not supposed to be the final chapter for Magnum. But that is how it has turned out. And what a final it is. Ten fabulous tracks in the proud Magnum tradition. The album is solid and it is packed with classic Magnum sounds. Somehow, Magnum’s music manages to be both immediately recognisable and very diverse. In the final line-up of the band, Tony and Bob were joined by Rick Benton on keyboards, Lee Morris on drums and Dennis Ward on bass. Immediate favourite songs on the album include “Run into the Shadows”, “The Seventh Darkness”, “Broken City”, “I Wanna Live”, “Borderline”… Well, I can easily describe all ten tracks as favourites. The terrific track “After the Silence” includes the line “So, now it’s over, it had to end”. Yes, sadly that is the case. Rest in peace, Tony. Thank you for the music and the memories. You did well.

Magnum’s new studio album “Here Comes the Rain” will be released on 12th January via Steamhammer.