The Magnums Keep the Passion

After a short hiatus, Toms River rockers The Magnums return to the stage.

A separation of two parties is a devastating event for anyone involved. At the time, it's hard to imagine life going on at that point. For most people, this comes in the form of a romantic relationship. However, there is another type of relationship that may suffer this more than anyone else.

Many bands that have become household names do not contain the original members that started the band. Whether it be due to politics within the band, a lack of desire or a new dream coming about, band members split all the time. The biggest issue for the band is moving on from that point.

While many may quit after losing a member, Toms River band The Magnums have kept their passion for music. Drummer Phil Rusher had left the band to explore other interests. Despite the loss, The Magnums made their return to the stage on Thursday, February 6 at McIntyre's Pub in Toms River with new drummer, Drew Maltese.

Bil Facciponte: Hey guys, we're here outside McIntyre's after your first set in almost a year. How does it feel?

Nico Santo-Domingo: It feels good to be back on stage performing. We haven't been around in a little while and it almost feels like we never left. I think Drew did really well.

BF: Well let's touch on that. Drew you've only been in the band for a few months now. How does it feel to be apart of the returning Magnums tonight?

Drew Maltese: It felt pretty good, jubilant even. All in all it was great except for a broken cymbal and a leg on the floor tom. It was really cool to be a part of this. I've always been a fan of them. When I first moved (to New Jersey) I started going to a bunch of their shows. I don't normally play drums, but with this band, it just feels good and natural.

NSD: It really felt like rock and roll.

BF: Would you guys say this is the best lineup you've ever had?

NSD: I can't because we've said that every time. Tonight though, we did have a lot of people tell us Drew was exactly the drummer we needed.

BF: The biggest thing a band needs is a connection between members. How do you guys feel Drew fits with the band?

NSD: He fits real well. We all get along and that's one of the key things for us.

BF: You guys debuted a few new songs tonight. Talk a bit about the process in writing the new tunes.

Garret Bayard: It seemed effortless. Everything just kind of fell into place.

NSD: Yeah nothing seemed to really change as far as the writing process went. It did seem easier now than it ever did before.

DM: It took about five minutes to write a song and I've never been part of a band that could write so quickly. It's just something where we caught magic in the moment and just rode that groove. 

BF: In a lot of the new stuff we're starting to hear Rob doing backup vocals. You haven't done a lot of those in the past, how does it feel?

Rob Molinari: I've actually always wanted to. I enjoy doing vocals. As long as it sounds good, I'm happy.

BF: It sounded very good. In fact, the show as a whole was great.

NSD: Yeah a couple of people noticed at the beginning of our set I was nervous. I was just kind of walking awkwardly on stage but once we got into it, it fell into place.

BF: Well you guys debuted some new songs tonight and you've been spending some time in the studio. When can we expect a new album?

GB: Soon, a lot sooner. Definitely quicker than our last one.

DM: Oh I'll definitely back that. I'm so anxious to record.

NSD: Yeah, everything just feels good now. We've had six members that have come and gone with the band but like I said, several people have told has the Drew is what we needed.

GB: Nico and I talked about that earlier and we're pretty inclined to agree with those people.

BF: Well fellas, it was great to see you back on the stage and I'm sure the fans can't wait to see you again. Thank you for the interview and the best of luck to you.

NSD: Thank you for your support and remember kids, always support local music.

The Magnums are:

Nico Santo-Domingo

Garrett Bayard

Rob Molinari

Drew Maltese


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