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Beyond The Wizard's Sleeve - Beyond The Wizards Sleeve Ark 1 (2008)

Genre : Kraut-Rock,Psychedelic,Electronica,Experimental

01 - Before We Start, If [George]
02 - Get Ready To Fly [West]
03 - Dig It [Birth]
04 - Electric Bananas [George]
05 - Aglarsa Anam Aglar [Birth]
06 - Sunday Morning Sun-G [George]
07 - Don't Cry Girl [Spring]
08 - I Swim Around [Spring]
09 - Bubble Burst [George]
10 - Path Through The Forest [Birth]
11 - Light Years [Spring]
12 - Red Tuesday [West]
13 - Winter In June [West]
14 - Midas Reversed [Birth]

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. By Cam Lindsay


Hari And Aino - Hari And Aino (2008)

Genre : Indie,Pop,Sweden

1. Gold (or something just as nice)
2. I will leave
3. Seasons
4. Hannah and I
5. Finland
6. Lousy day
7. Rubble and ruin
8. Tour heartache and mine
9. Second song
10. Thank you for my sisters

Andrea Dahlkild, lead vocals in Hari and Aino, is a blend between Duffy, Maja IvarssonNina Persson. She is edgy in a sophisticated & balanced way. I ain't eager to go to one of their shows since I don't think that will be needed to change my impression. The CardigansHari and Aino reminds me of that. You know when there is a possibility to listen too much of something effecting in sickness to your ears.
and are not a secretly professional band, but it sometimes falls flat; The album withholds 10 songs, a perfect number! This is sweet indie pop, not cocky, political, heartbreaking songs; no, we are talking about a hint of shyness and pulsating sympathetic music that are feeding your hungry music veins. Finland apparently has a big influence on them (see "Finland") and I really have to ask them why; going on talking about their other songs, I must say that "Seasons" is causing good vibrations and is unquestionably their best hit. Also, I recommend "Your heartache and mine". This Stockholm based band has very good potential, I just want them get wild here and there, to surprise. I wish them my best and think y'all out there should give this little twee beautiful album a listen.
- Therese Buxfäldt


Faded Paper Figures - Dynamo (2008)

Genre : Indie,Rock,Pop,Electronica

1 North by Nort
2 B Film
3 Logos
4 Polaroid Solution
5 Future Self
6 Metropolis
7 I Fell Off My Name
8 Geneva's Gone
9 The Persuaded
10 Being There
11 Speeches
12 Red State

I have a rule about listening to every band that takes the time and trouble to e-mail me (prominent placement on ye old Rawkblog ain't exactly the fast track to blogosphere domination, fellas). Most of them, predictably, aren't very good, but the exceptions often wow me.

Faded Paper Figures are the latest to do so. Their debut, Dynamo, recalls the indie/electro hybrid of the Main Drag's still-great Yours As Fast As Mine, or to reference a band you've actually heard, the Postal Service with more guitars and less Gibbard lyrics. I couldn't tell you if it was home recorded, but it certainly pulses with the beats of modern bedroom pop, equal parts drum machines and crisply recorded acoustic guitars chopped into a tasty, 43-minute indie salad.

It's quiet, sentimental stuff -- "North By North" includes the almost humorously hopeless line "You said a long, long time ago / you were happy being someone" -- that's as sharp and rhythmic as it is affective. Their sincerity isn't quite as moving when it gets all sophomore year liberal arts-y ("Red State," a love song about being -- you guessed it! -- blue), but then again, going back to college might teach Ben Gibbard a thing or two. by David Greenwald


James Yuill - Turning Down Water For Air [NEW!!] (2008)

Genre : Indie,Pop,Folk,Electronica,Singer-Songwriter

1. You Always Do
2. Left Handed Girl
3. No Pins Allowed
4. This Sweet Love
5. Head Over Heels
6. The Ghost
7. No Surprise
8. Over The Hills
9. How Could I Lose?
10. She Said In Jest
11. Breathing In
12. Somehow

A singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist from London, James’ music has been described as ‘folktronica’, which blends the influence from two of his favorite artists: Nick Drake and Radiohead. Not surprisingly then, his session saw him shifting ably between an acoustic guitar and some electronic machinery, usually during the same song. He’s also been in-demand for his remixing skills, recently adding his touch to songs by Au Revoir Simone and The Answering Machine.
Three of the four songs in his Lounge Act appear on his latest CD while the fourth, a cover of Radiohead’s “Packt Like Sardines in a Crushd Tin Box”, has become a trademark of James’ live shows. Turning Down Water For Air is available digitally in the US and directly from his own Happy Biscuit Club label. Definitely an artist we expect to hear a lot more from in the future.


Brian Wilson - That Lucky Old Sun (2008)

Genre : Pop,Rock,Psychedelic,Singer-Songwriter

1.That Lucky Old Sun
2.Morning Beat
3.Narrative: Room With a View
4.Good Kind of Love
5.Forever My Surfer Girl
6.Narrative: Venice Beach
7.Live Let Live
8.Mexican Girl
9.Narrative: Cinco De Mayo
10.California Role
11.Narrative: Between Pictures
13.Can't Wait Too Long
14.Midnight's Another Day
15.Lucky Old Sun [Reprise]
16.Going Home
17.Southern California
18.Roll-Around Heaven [Reprise]

Producer, writer, performer and legendary Brian Wilson (Beach Boys leader) releases a brandnew album. Despite its hundred percent new songs, it sounds like a nostalgic record from 60s. Oxygen To The Brain, Good Kind Of Love, Forever My Surfer Girl give the retro impression. Brian Wilson exactly knows what kind of songs works in his circle. Although this record makes feel you old, you'd rather not to ask a brand new style since he's a strong musician. Traditional, clear and sentimental.

Electronic Noise Controller - Pneuma EP (2008)

Genre : Electronica,IDM,Ambient,Down-Tempo

1. Pneuma
2. Sandstone
3. Shuffle
4. Bugtoy
5. Burrow
6. Piel
7. Frozen Tomatoes
8. Tape Surgeon

The beginning of the creative way of Pavel can be considered as 2003- y the year, when first steps in the electronic music were made, so also 2006- y the year, when began the work on first EP - Mechanical Of soundscapes. In this time the style of music changed from the imitation to classical IDM to the side of the atmosphere and. After the appearance Of mechanical Of soundscapes it was well perceived by amateurs IDM. After obtaining reputation in the small circles and after inspiring by results, Pavel began the work on second EP - Pneuma, which left in the middle of 2008. Disk came out dark, still more atmospheric, industrial and by somewhere even lyric. Work does not stop, third at hand…


Mercury Rev - Snowflake Midnight (2008)

Genre : Indie,Rock,Psychedelic,Experimental

1. Snowflake In A Hot World
2. Butterfly's Wings
3. Senses On Fire
4. People Are So Unpredictable (There's No Bliss Like Home)
5. October Sunshine
6. Runaway Raindrop
7. Dream Of A Young Girl As A Flower
8. Faraway For Cars
9. A Squirrel And I (Holding On...And Then Letting Go)

Beware all commercial shit, you may find some great records there in the year. Like grabby Third by Portishead, or relaxing waterworks by Tindersticks' The Hungry Saw and all other records which are made by great musicians. There is nothing wrong with this avant-garde concept record, oh dudes i always love concept albums. Snowflake midnight seems to fall down from space to earth, lyrics are so eternal here, every song sounds delicious and something that you've never tasted before. Intsrumental sections from time to time perfectly matches with latter vocals, pianos and experimental ambience. The band particularly go beyond to dreamy places like paradise on song "Dream of a Young Girl as a Flower". The best Mercury Rev record since Boces and Deserter's Songs. An untasted beauty!

Highlights: Snowflake in a Hot World, Butterflys Wing, Dream of a Young Girl as a Flower, A Squirrel and I. - "".