David McInnis has connections in the Omaha and Lincoln rock scene. Local bands like Death by Brutus and Cat Piss find their way to his basement, Magroover Studios, to record their songs. Others join his record label, Bad Dad Records, to help themselves get promoted. However, McInnis may be best known for his band Magū. Despite having released about seven solo tracks and EPs on Bandcamp since 2016, McInnis is now releasing his first full-length album.
Omaha alternative rock band Magū will be releasing its album “Dwell” on April 2. Leading up to the release, four singles will be put out, with “Pretty Cool” being the first, released on Feb. 12.
The psychedelic rock band was originally a solo project headed by McInnis, who writes and plays drums on the album. He said “Dwell” will be diverse in style, as multiple songwriters worked together on the 10-song album.
“It’s refreshing to have multiple writers,“ McInnis said. “We kind of took a decentralized approach to this record and it’s been really rewarding … I don’t think it’s an easy thing to do, to make it all mesh together, and I think we do it well. The album flows wonderfully. I’m very proud of everyone who’s contributed to the record.”
McInnis also said he was glad the other writers took some pressure off of him to lead the band.
“Being the original keyboardist and songwriter, relieving those roles has been super rewarding — challenging at first,” he said. “Every player in the band played their parts. Sometimes you get session players being the leader of the band … but everybody played their own parts in this, which is super awesome and inspiring.”
One of the other writers on the album is Erin Mitchell, who also plays keys and sings on the album. She wrote the songs “Parents House” and “Soarin,” taking thoughts that were special to her and turning them into song.
“[‘Parents House’] started as a poem that I wrote about one of my friends,” Mitchell said. “‘Soarin’ is kind of about manifestation. That’s what I was thinking about when I was writing it. It’s a bit simpler lyrically, but there’s a lot of meaning behind it.”
She said she’d known McInnis for a few years and was excited when he asked her to write and add female vocals to “Dwell.” Working on the album has also helped Mitchell rekindle her piano skills and incorporate them into a larger production than she’s used to.
“We have a really good schedule each week of practicing and recording that has been really beneficial to me being in the band and getting used to playing keys,” Mitchell said.
Mitchell also creates media for Magū’s Instagram as the band prepares to release the full-length, taking promotional pictures and video. Aside from promoting the album through visual media, McInnis thinks of the singles as promotion, too, calling them “little snacks” to tie Magū’s fanbase over until the album comes out.
“I’m very confident in our songs, and the fanbase we have is very loyal,” he said. “We haven’t released music since April, so I think people are itching for the record. I’ve been hinting at it. I think the four singles will only get fans more excited.”
The next single, “Full Canoe,” will be released on Feb. 26. The entire digital album is currently available for pre-order on Bandcamp for $15. McInnis said he wouldn’t be putting “Dwell” on Spotify for free streaming until a certain number of digital albums are sold. He also hopes to sell vinyl records and CDs of “Dwell.”
To Mitchell, one of the best parts about working with McInnis and joining Magū is her bandmates.
“There’s constantly positive energy and [the other band members] are so inspiring,“ Mitchell said. “I constantly find myself learning and growing while working with them.”