If You Like Mumford & Sons, Magic Giant Is Your New Favorite Band

If You Like Mumford & Sons, Magic Giant Is Your New Favorite Band

A banjo, violin, harmonica, cello, and incredible lyrics. What more could you ask for?
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One of the most magical moments of a concert can be the discovery of new music that really speaks to you. If you're lucky, you might just happen across a new band opening for the main act. And last Friday night in New York, that is exactly what happened.

After a scheduling accident at the Gramercy Theatre landed our Atlas Genius concert with a door opening of 10 PM instead of 7 PM, it had already been a night of overstaying our welcome at Banter for dinner, drinking too much Starbucks, and wasting time in Washington Square Park by the time we decided to head to the concert. Needless to say, I was getting tired and needed some music to get me in the right state of mind.

We arrived in time for Magic Giant's full set, and thank God. I had heard their single "Set On Fire" previously, and thought it was great, but didn't really hear from them after that, so I didn't have crazy expectations for what this show was going to be like. To add on, they weren't the headliners, so I didn't think much of them when I saw them on the lineup, to be honest.

"Magic Giant, oh yeah, I've heard them. They're pretty good..." and that was about my whole thought process on the situation.


I can now safely say I am completely and utterly obsessed.

They are (forgive my pun) absolutely magical. There is no other way to describe them. The three-piece band, hailing from Los Angeles, combines the talents of Austin Bisnow, Zambricki Li, and Zang. Yeah, even their names alone are cooler than you'll ever be.

It was clear from their opening song "Jade" that these guys are full-on Mumford & Sons vibes, complete with a banjo, violin, harmonica, acoustic guitar, and cello. Oh yeah, and some really awesome and catchy lyrics, too.

"Hey Jade, go save the day / 'Cause somebody out there needs you / Don't stay - I'll be okay / 'Cause when I'm alone I'm with you," sang Austin Bisnow. As I looked left and right, I realized that the entire room was singing along with him. Smiling, dancing, shouting the lyrics alongside their friends, it became clear that tons of people had come to this show solely to experience this magic.

Perhaps the greatest moment of their all-too-short set came right in the middle when they slowed it down for a minute. The band began to shush the audience down to whispers.

"Okay, okay, if you guys can get absolutely silent, we'll come into the crowd and do an acoustic song," said Austin.

He grabbed his mic stand, Zang his acoustic guitar, and Zambricki his violin, and hopped the barricade into the middle of the floor. Standing among the crowd they sang "Great Divide," a song about unity, love, and loss. It was as if we were in a small basement instead of a concert venue when everyone began to softly catch onto the lyrics and Austin put his arms around fans, swaying back and forth, and encouraging a large sing-along of "la-da-das".

Luckily, they're still small enough to hang outside the venue after shows to meet fans and say hello. Don't take that for granted, because they are well on their way to sure stardom. If you're looking for more of their sound, check out the video below.

Magic Giant just released their debut album "In The Wind," available everywhere now.

Cover Image Credit: Abby Williamson on Flickr

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5 Surprising Reasons to Take Up Ice Fishing This Season

Why Ice Fishing is the Best Fishing
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Winter has arrived and since we live in the real world and not in Game of Thrones universe, it won't last for years. That's why instead of being cooped up in your own house, you should make the best of this season. And how can you do it?? Of course, by ice fishing. 

Yes, I am perfectly aware that, when we hear the word 'Winter', fishing is not the first thing that comes to our mind; but it should. 

Ok, I admit that winter is cold, bleak and sometimes boring. However, ice fishing is the best way to spice up our winter. There is no activity that would cheer you up in this gloomy weather more than fishing through the ice. Yet, if you are still skeptical about ice fishing, then below I have given 5 reasons that would certainly convince you to take up ice fishing this winter. 

1. Saves Money

Money matters to everyone, unless you are Bill Gates or his lucky lad. And, you can save a lot of money by fishing in winter rather than in summer. For, during the summer, in order to catch fish, you must own or rent a boat, and a boat requires maintenance, and all of this will cost you a huge sum of money. 

On the other hand, in winter you won't need a boat, and without a boat, there would be no maintenance. This would certainly save you an ample amount of money. Besides, instruments of ice fishing aren't expensive and you can purchase them for less than $100. However, you must make sure that your equipment such as rods, auger, and fishing reels are top notch to ensure that you are fully prepared for any kind of fish. 

2. Perfect for family outing

One thing that I particularly love about ice fishing is that we can do it with our family, unlike fishing in summer, as it is quite difficult to go fishing with 5 or 6 people in the boat. It is also worthy of note that ice angling is extremely popular among kids as a winter activity as they love playing in the snow, and their happy faces will certainly brighten up your mood. Thus, it won't be an exaggeration to say that an exhilarating fishing adventure is the best outdoor activity for family outings in this freezing weather. 

3. No sunburn

Sunburn is a cause of concern for most of the anglers, and rightly so. Because overexposure to the sun can cause us severe skin damage. However, ice anglers don't have to worry about sunburn unless you are one of those who prefer to fish in a state of undress. 

Nonetheless, it would be wise for you to put on some warm and comfortable clothes of high-quality as it would protect you from hypothermia. And, if you are you terrified of cold weather, don't worry, for, with a new technology called ThermoLogic line by NTA Enterprise, you can control the temperature of your own fishing apparel. Therefore, put all your worries into the closet and remember, before embarking on the ice, you must bundle up. 

4. You Don't get bored

It could be quite frustrating when the fish is not biting. But you shouldn’t trouble yourself, as you can try a lot of other activities instead of waiting for the fish to get hooked. For example, you can play cards, hockey (my favorite) or enjoy a hot tub out in the open. Besides, you will have all your fishing buddies alongside you. But if you are one of those who like to fish alone, then divulge in skating or you can try your cooking skills while keeping an eye on the hole for fish. Hence, rest assured, boredom is something that you won't suffer from while ice fishing. 

5. Great for health

I am sure, you have heard this phrase 'health is wealth', but did you know that you can preserve your 'wealth' by ice fishing? Yes, you can. But how??? Well, It has been scientifically proven that being near to water is greatly beneficial for our health, even when the water is frozen. 

An Australian study has revealed that water can have a great effect on our overall fitness. For, it reduces stress (which is vital for our heart), helps breast cancer patient's recovery,and aids to tackle chronic illness or mental problems. Therefore, by taking up ice fishing in this winter you can get both pleasure and health benefits.

So Do You Feel The Itch?

By now, you should feel the bubbles in your stomach for ice fishing. It has fun, adventure and what not! Let me know your thought on taking up ice fishing this season in the comment section below.

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7 Key 'Pointes' I Learned About Dance After I Quit

It's all blood, sweat and tears, but no one outside of the studio knows.
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As a kid, I wanted to be someone as graceful and as beautiful as a ballerina. So when my mom was willing to sign me up for dance lessons, I was beyond excited to take my first lesson in third grade. For the next three or four years, I developed a passion for dance — so much so that I wanted to be a dancer for the rest of my life. However, due to family-related reasons, I had to put dance on a hiatus for a year. I played a year of catch-ups when I returned, but soon, I had to abruptly leave again. Though I may no longer be with my friends at the barre anymore, I've realized multiple key things about dance that I have never noticed before.


1. You sacrifice a huge chunk of your time.

When I first left the studio, I was shocked at all the spare time I had. I didn't know what to do with all this time, and I was constantly bored. From dancing every day to not dancing at all, I gained six more hours per week (and that was me taking minimum classes required at a company level). I know people who take around eight classes a week, and the studio is practically their home. Now, it's sort of hard to imagine how to balance schoolwork, extracurriculars and work on a tight schedule.

2. Dancing requires much physical exertion.

When I was in dance class, we worked on combinations and techniques until we felt the burn in our muscles, and we would be sore the next day (and possibly the days afterward). I would be drenched in sweat at the end of class, and my glasses would be fogged up by the hot breath. It wasn't until I stopped dancing when I realized that my daily exercise comes from dance classes. I gained a little weight, and my muscles weren't as strong as before.

3. Perseverance is key.

I didn't realize what working for something truly was until I had to do it myself. To be honest, it took me a couple of years to realize that if I wanted something, I had to fight for it. Whether it was to stretch a bit longer every night or to practice turns at home, everything required the initiative to improve. The process would seem so long and frustrating, but I would be so determined that it didn't even matter.

4. Injuries don't exist.

I've witnessed people get injured from dance. It's insane how people are still able to dance and smile through concussions and sprained ankles. I've seen bloody feet, fallen toenails and swollen feet. I've fallen more times than I could count, whether it was from preparing for a jump or just from slipping on the floor. Pointe shoes were a pain, and I'm sure my toenails would never look the same ever again. I barely made it through class back then, and I still don't know how people are able to do it now.

5. You have to be dedicated.

Dance requires so much time, so much energy and so much diligence. You really have to be passionate and dedicated to dance in order to go through this entire process. Once you set your mind on something, you do whatever it takes to improve. After all, what's the point of doing something if you don't care for it?

6. The end result is always rewarding.

When I danced, it was rewarding to accomplish the little things, such as nailing a turn. As an ex-dancer and an audience member, I browsed through dance videos and went to recitals, and it was inspiring to see everyone's hard work pay off. You could tell by their confidence radiating onstage, and it immediately drew you in.

7. You make lasting friendships.

I left the studio twice, and both times I experienced a separation and drift from everyone else. Although a part of it was due to me being an introvert at the time, time can cut friendships off or make people drift apart. On the other hand, I witnessed others bond closer and closer. I believe it's wonderful that people find friends who share the same interests and will support you through your journey. It's mind-blowing to see all the time and effort dancers put into their movements and flow.


Blood, sweat and tears. From an outsider's perspective, dancers make it all look easy. But if I hadn't known any better, I would've brushed off all their efforts off. The end result is what we all see, but we don't realize everything prior to that. Dance isn't often treated as serious as other things, so before you make a remark on dance, walk a mile in the dancer's shoes.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels | Tim Gouw

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