Celebrating their major label debut album “Drenched” on Morgan Creek Records (the group’s fifth album), the critically hailed Miracle Legion delivered an exciting, captivating, dramatic concert at the Whisky, complete with a full 12 -piece “Friendship” choir from the Crenshaw district accompanying frontman Mark Mulcahy on “Waiting Room.”
Mulcahy, dressed in a sequined evening gown, combat boots and an old sport jacket, sprung into the air at the many peak moments of the Legion’s ultra-dramatic songs, tunes that run the range from lullaby to thunderstorm, a level of musical expression rarely achieved by pop bands.
Miracle Legion experimented with tasty, multidimensional arrangements and time signatures, using 6/8 as well as traditional time, while keeping melodies simple.
Atop the music, they inject intelligent, thought-provoking lyrics, addressing racism and religious labeling, while maintaining a romantic outlook.
Mulcahy is full of surprises. In addition to his expressive vocal, he often added harmonica, guitar, tambourine, even a trumpet to the band’s already well-arranged tunes. He later led the audience through an a cappella chant at the end of “Sea Hag.”
The light designs complemented the songs beautifully. A reflector globe sent the room into a slow spin during ballads and strobes added intensity to the upbeat songs. In addition, multicolored flowers decorated the stage and were distributed to audience members prior to the show.
Although the band is often compared to R.E.M. (probably due to Mulcahy’s vocal performance and the quality of Miracle Legion’s material), certainly they deserve recognition for their own identity.