Beyond the Wizard's Sleeve

Beyond the Wizard's Sleeve
Anonymity has become both a gift and a curse for the blogosphere — a "gift” for feeding our hunger, and a "curse” for, well, not informing us as to who is feeding us. Burial has the world eating out of his hand, picking and choosing various publications access and admitting truths like "only five people know I make tunes.” Argh. And then there are the artists that leave you a message that reads: "If you are wondering who we are, we will soon reveal all.. we are planning some wonderful all night parties, we wear belts with huge buckles and we play the best music ever. See you back here sooooon. Beyond The Wizards Sleeve X x” (And I include the fact that they missed out on including the apostrophe in "Wizards” as part of the frustration.) Well, in the case of Beyond the Wizard’s Sleeve it’s not near the degree of Burial’s obscurity, considering if you dig around online you’ll discover that they are in fact Richard Norris, who just published a biography on Paul Oakenfold (?) and superstar London DJ-cum-producer Erol Alkan. It’s actually common knowledge that Alkan’s in this crew – there’s a photo of him on their MySpace profile working the decks. Beyond the Wizard’s Sleeve is Alkan’s move into making music, after launching the now-legendary TRASH club in London, remixing Daft Punk, Bloc Party, Franz Ferdinand and Hot Chip, and producing bands of late like the Long Blondes, Mystery Jets, Klaxons and newcomers Late of the Pier. Under this pseudonym the duo are best known for their successful remixes of Peter Bjorn & John, Tracey Thorn and Midlake (see below for a full DJ set too). But, they’re beginning to build a name for themselves as music makers, thanks to last year’s LP Spring and the new EP George (out on the mysterious 3rd Mynd label). Using their skills behind the boards, or magic spells, if you will, they cut-up and paste together old psych and Krautrock tracks, essentially pimpin’ them out. For example, "I Swim Around” manipulates Neu!’s classic "Hallogallo,” glazing it with freaky samples and backwards masking, while "Bubble Burst” edits a muscular backbeat loop into fiery guitar licks, beaming organs and a bongo clinic for a psych/soul explosion.

”Don’t Cry Girl”

”Bubble Burst”

”I Swim Around (Neu! Hallogallo Rework)”

Midlake "Roscoe (Beyond the Wizard’s Sleeve Remix)”

Findlay Brown "Losing the Will To Survive” (Beyond the Wizard’s Sleeve Remix)”

Beyond the Wizard’s Sleeve Live at the Mex in Manchester, July 2007