Over the course of seven years, Wizard Of’s artistic identity has gradually evolved. His music has always revolved around rhythm and different global dance styles but with today’s release of ‘Razor Life’ on Bedroomer, we find him honing in on a more distinctive sound that speaks to his love of surrealist horror films and UK grime. Wizard Of aptly refers to this sound as “cinematic deconstructed grime.”
The cinematic element of the record was directly inspired by the psychedelic anxiety of Dario Argento’s films, namely, the Italian horror classic Suspiria. It is one of Wizard’s favourite films and when he went to a screening of it last fall, he found himself overwhelmed by its colours, details, violence and general anxiety. He decided that he wanted to make a record in the vein of Suspiria: dizzying, elevating, overwhelming and cathartic. “Razor Life” is the finished product, a streamlined package of rattling drums, climactic chord progressions, bass wobble and eerie sound textures.
In terms of sonic influences, Wizard Of certainly borrows elements from UK grime, as can be heard in the skittering, off-kilter drum patterns of “Red Swim” and “Eyez,” but he also channels several other regional dance sounds throughout. The title track sounds as though Wizard super-imposed a horror film score over an old school house jam and sprinkled in some surging gqom dynamics.
On highlight “Dreamgum” he employs expansive, big-room FX alongside dubstep-indebted bass wobble and dancehall-indebted steel drum samples. This amalgamation of styles feels effortless, a natural result of listening, performing and recording for years. With another EP due to drop on U.S. club label Classical Trax later this year, it seems this is only a taste of what’s to come from Wizard Of and we can hardly handle the suspense.
Stream/purchase ‘Razor Life’ via Bedroomer below.