26. On the 13th Day – in the 35th year!
Facebook held good news in store in March 2012,: the next album was already underway. Named “On The 13th Day” it was to be published in September. Recording had already started in February. Surprisingly, the first song “All The Dreamers”, a mid-tempo rocker was premiered live at the Rock Hard festival on May 26th in Germany. Even a single release was announced to water the fans’ mouths.
At another festival appearance in Sursee/Switzerland alongside the PRETTY MAIDS, SAXON and TOTO, during which they even opened their set with “All The Dreamers”. It’s a song about the concert audience, making every gig night special for band and fans likewise.
On August 27th “So Let It Rain” was available at download shops. The single consisted of three songs: The radio edit and album versions of the title track and a special bonus track, “Wild Angels live”, recorded in Aschaffenburg/Germany on the Visitation tour. There also was a physical version of the single, however that one was a collector’s piece. It went out to journalists and radio stations but fans were able to get hold of it only by ordering it in a bundle with the album at EMP, a German mail order company. “So Let It Rain” was a wonderfully melodic mid-tempo song which did quite well in various rock download charts. The lyrics were about staying calm and learning to accept things and making the best of everything even if something goes wrong in life. Al had designed a special cover featuring a huge yellow/brownish Magnum “M” and a star in a ring, looking like metal parts of an industrial machine, and lighted up by light bulbs. The MAGNUM logo was on top of the cover in shiny red.
“On the 13th Day” was finally published on the 21st September in Germany, three days later in Britain and then in the rest of the world. Tony explained in an interview, that he had thought of the title “On The 12th Day” but had found out that a lot of albums had already been published under that title by other bands, so he had simply added one day to make the title special. The album came in four different formats: as download, standard CD, coloured limited vinyl and a limited digipack with bonus CD. The album tracks were named: “ All The Dreamers”, “Blood Red Laughter”, “Didn't Like You Anyway”, “On The 13th Day”, “So Let It Rain”, “Dance Of The Black Tattoo”, “Shadow Town”, “Putting Things In Place”, “Broken Promises” “See How They Fall” and “From Within”.
The bonus disc of the digipack contained six bonus tracks: “Those Were The Days”(demo from 1988-89), “Eyes Like Fire”(full version), “Blood Red Laughter”(acoustic version),”We All Need To Be Loved”(live from Prague/Czech Republic), ”Shadow Town” (acoustic version) and “The Moonking” (live from Mannheim/Germany). “We All Need To Be Loved” had been recorded at the “On The Wings Of Heaven Live” tour in 2008 and the “The Moonking” at the tour promoting the corresponding album in 2009. “Those Were The Days” was an earlier version of “Heartbroke And Busted”. The middle part had been kept, but the rest had changed considerably to create the well-known second single from “Goodnight L.A.”. Two more somgs were available to Planet Rock VIP-members for download. These were “So Let It Rain (acoustic) and “Broken Promises” (acoustic).
The cover drawing was another Rodney Matthews masterpiece. Lively coloured, mainly in light blue, orange and red, it showed a mysterious-looking elf, holding a white flag with the inscription “On The Thirteenth Day”. The MAGNUM letters were written in fresh, still dripping red colour on yellow cards, which were fixed to a washing line. The elf had a slight resemblance to Bob. As usual there were several allusions to earlier album covers. The thorny tree next to the elf can be found on the “Chase The Dragon”-cover, The mentioned flag is fixed to the “Storyteller’s” stick and the flying ship above the tree can be found on the “Moonking” picture.
The lyrics of the title song told a little ghost story. More remarkable songs were the catchy “Shadow Town”, a song about the consequences of the worldwide financial crisis for urban areas, “Dance Of The Black Tattoo”, an anti-war song with deep heavy rock riffs, a real head banger, and “From Within” which had peen recorded with a choir of more than 70 (!) singers, making the song really impressive.
Independent reviewers all over the UK and Europe liked the album even better than the last one, which had already got swell reviews, and praised it as the best one after the reunion and one of the best MAGNUM records ever.
In October and November the band embarked on another European tour taking them to Germany, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Sweden, Belgium, France and – of course – Great Britain.
The stage was set up in the usual manner. Harry had a new drumskin on his bassdrum which showed the evil elf from the latest record cover in a special “Harry” version with black sunglasses on. Beside the usual T-shirts fans could buy a behind the scenes photo book which showed a lot of pictures from the recording process. The band played four songs from the new album and returned some songs into the set which had not been rendered for quite some time: “All The Dreamers”/ “When We Were Younger”/ “Blood Red Laughter”/ “Wild Angels”/ “Brand New Morning”/ “How Far Jerusalem”/ “The Flood”/ “Les Morts Dansant”/ “The Spirit”/ “Dance Of The Black Tattoo”/ “All My Bridges”/ “All England’s Eyes”/ “Vigilante”/ “Kingdom Of Madness”. Encores were “See How They Fall”/ “Rocking Chair”/ and finally “Days Of No Trust”.
Most venues were really full, some even sold out. The loyal listeners liked the set a lot, especially the return of “The Flood” and “Dance Of The Black Tattoo”, which became a real highlight in every show. Before the show in Mannheim/Germany the band offered a signing session in a local Media shop which went down really well with the fans, too. During the tour the band announced plans for another album in early 2014 with a tour to follow, so the fans already had something to look for…