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Above & Beyond 

Sixty seconds with Tony McGuinness

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Indy: You've been called "the saviors of trance." What did you save it from?

TM: Obviously not the credit crunch, unfortunately. I'm not sure who said that now, but what we'd like it to refer to is the ghastly, overly commercial, pop clich of trance that colors so many people's view of the word.

Indy: Above & Beyond wasn't together for long before Madonna chose your mostly instrumental remix of "What it Feels Like for a Girl" as the music track for her video. Did that come as a surprise?

TM: Absolutely. ... The whole campaign for that single ended up being quite disjointed. You had these two very different tracks working on radio and TV: one a sweet, twee pop record on radio, and the other this growling monster of a track with this poignant breakdown speech and a particularly dark and disturbing video. But it was extremely exciting for Above & Beyond, as this was the first and I think the last time Madonna or any major artist ever used a different mix from the radio version in the video.

Indy: You were in [UK post-punk band] Sad Lovers & Giants. Do you think that group's fans know or appreciate Above & Beyond?

TM: I know some of them do, from personal experience. I get messages on MySpace, and people come up to me at gigs and talk about them. To me they are two halves of a musical journey with very similar ideals. Both groups are big on atmosphere, open spaces, epic chords, sad lyrics and old analog synths. The difference is that Above & Beyond is successful and SLAG, sadly, were not.

Bill Forman

At Beta in Denver, Feb. 19.

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