Blomberg Laboratories

Book by Andi Gladwin (From $55.00)

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Blomberg Laboratories is not as good as I had hoped it would be ... it's even better." Michael Weber

Sweden's Tomas Blomberg is not like other magicians. He combines his background in mathematics, physics, and puzzles to create a style of magic that is uniquely his own. Many expert magicians have heralded Blomberg as a reclusive genius, and for the first time ever, his highly guarded secrets will be revealed in a beautiful, oversized, hardback book.

In Blomberg's world, the method is just as interesting as the effect. For example, you will learn a completely new approach to the Card at Any Number style routine where the deck secretly—and automatically—cuts itself at the named number. In a "Interlocked Monte," you use mathematics to decipher whether there is a sharp pin hidden under a row of randomly ordered cups. In "Time After Time" the spectators are able to find their own selections, even after they mix the cards themselves. Intrigued? You should be. The methods are completely fresh, and unlike anything you have ever used in your magic before.

Sleight of hand fans are in for a treat as the book is full of new effects and techniques. In particular, pay attention to Tomas' work with the spread double lift: this refined technique has been used by card magic's elite for many years and it is finally published here, for the first time, along with five effects using it.

In total, author Andi Gladwin teaches 65 of Tomas' most interesting creations. We live an era where quality magic books are scarce, and Blomberg Laboratories is a welcome addition. This book has been three years in the making, and the material has taken a lifetime to develop.

"Tomas Blomberg is genius! I've been a big fan of his magic, thinking, and creativity for years." Tim Trono
"Blomberg is brilliant, and Blomberg Laboratories is a fantastic book." Richard Kaufman

328 pages, over 420 illustrations, 10" x 10" oversized hardback.

Contents of Blomberg Laboratories

Non-Card Tricks
The Konami Code
Cashing
Neckless Grandma
ABandOn
Magic Lesson
Brazilian Bend
Bills Witch

TB Spread Double
TB Spread Double
À la Cummins
Tattwo You
Matest
Double Brainwave Update Update
One Improbability

Moves
Two Double Turnovers
Proteus Bound
Fuentes Load-Up
Optical Kosky
Low Life Display
Peel Slide Switch

Interlock
113g
Interlocked Daley
Low Cost
Hindu Interlock

Paradoxes
Lucky 14
The Freakish Miracle
Deal the Way
Torn Uncut Card Sheet
Estimated Sunken Key
Late Key
Hard Card Paradox
Interlocked Gilbreath
Mind Stress

Packet Tricks
Packet Morpher Sequence
Hoftwister
Three-Card Monster
ProHof
Marlo Might Have Liked This
One Behead
L-I-A-R

General Card Tricks
Multiplex Re+Set
Signed Hot Mama
Brownian Bridge
Chase the Red
Defect Gatherer
Gasp! Scream!
Mxyzptlk
QXS...SXQ
Mental Devilish Miracle
X-Scape
Schrödinger’s Tie

At the Card Table
(Vernon + Sadowitz)^2
Jack’s Trick
Svensk Voodoo
TSAR
Tabled Oil & Water
Rhythm Switch Assembly
Time After Time
Cardpool

Twists on Christ
Double Christ
Sunken Christ
PreMEMOnition

Con/Science
Swedish Parity Poker
Simplex Non-Transitive Poker Die
Three Bar Scams
16 Card Swindle

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Customer reviews for Blomberg Laboratories

Official review from Genii Magazine

From the June 2015 Genii magazine. Reviewed by John Guastaferro

The name Tomas Blomberg may be new to many of you. Blomberg is a Swedish magician with a penchant for mathematics, modern twists on classic plots and fooling principles that have left knowledgeable magicians scratching their heads. There is no doubt that Blomberg’s master’s degree in computer vision and signal processing feeds his creative process. I’ve had the pleasure of being fooled by many of Blomberg’s effects over the years, so it was a thrill to see his work finally presented and preserved in such a handsome book as Blomberg Laboratories.

With its oversized square format and minimalistic cover design by Michal Kociolek, you’ll likely want this 328-page volume displayed on your coffee table. The content was written and designed by Andi Gladwin, who has clearly claimed his place as a voice in magic. With each effect, Gladwin welcomes you with a short introductory paragraph describing how the trick was born and why you should care. The text, combined with crisp illustrations generated by a piece of software developed by Blomberg himself, guide you with care and lucidity.

The book features over 65 tricks and sleights divided into 10 chapters that include non-card tricks, original moves, packet tricks, paradoxes, tabled card tricks, general card tricks and more. Just like a real laboratory, we are drawn into a room of experiments, research and breakthroughs. Not every effect is practical for strolling situations, and several require preparation and/or construction. For purists, there are also numerous impromptu card routines. I found them all to be worthy of study and fodder for further exploration.

The book opens with seven non-card effects. One of my favorites was “Magic Lesson,” a multi-phase ring and band routine. The handling is intricate, and the description may seem overbearing, but the final product is very commercial. Blomberg causes a ring to penetrate one strand, then two strands several times. And just when you think the effect is over, he offers a kicker transposition of the ring and band.

In “Neckless Grandma,” Blomberg solves two overlooked problems with the classic “Grandma’s Necklace” effect, where you pull two ropes through your neck. His simple one-degree addition allows you to handle the ropes more freely and make the finish more deceptive.

“Bills Witch” allows you to cleanly change two bills without any corners to conceal. After some preparation, this is something I can see many magicians carrying in their wallets.

Blomberg offers several original moves, including two double turnovers and the “Low Life Display,” a new take on Daryl’s Rising Crime Display.

In “QXS SXQ,” we learn that Tomas’ first magic book was Allan Ackerman’s Las Vegas Kardma (1994). Here, he uses Ackerman’s PH Move to great effect. Two Queens placed together in the deck immediately separate to find two selections. I like the presentational touch of referring to the direction that the Queen’s eyes are looking.

In the chapter called Interlock, Blomberg offers intriguing applications of Ken Beale’s Interlock concept. He utilizes it in “Low Cost,” an efficient in-the-hands variation of Paul Harris’ “Grasshopper.” He also introduces a new use with “Hindu Interlock.” This clever sequence achieves a force, switch and control all at once. He even causes the selection to jump from one packet to a determined position in the other. I think the biggest benefit is that the signed selection can be shown to have an odd back at the end.

Blomberg adds new layers of deceptiveness to the Gilbreath principle with “Interlocked Gilbreath.” You’ll feel like a real fortuneteller experimenting with the basic example, which allows you to tell something (color or odd/even) about every single card before you see it.

“Lucky 14” is a deceiving twist on the Gemini Mates plot. With its clever combination of genuinely free dealing and underlying math, you’ll fool yourself as you run through it, especially with the last revelation.

I’ve never seen anything like “Schrödinger’s Tie before.” Even after the deck is wrapped in a ribbon, a tug on the ends causes the deck to cut in two places. In typical Blomberg form, he offers a mathematical key to target what card is cut to.

Blomberg also shares a large-scale version of Paul Curry’s “Paradox” using a full sheet of printed cards. In “Torn Uncut Card Sheet,” the backs of 56 cards are clearly seen, then when re-formed, show an empty square in the middle. This one may be difficult and costly to attain.

I found a number of commercial card routines that would be great for strolling situations. “L-I-A-R” is a small-packet version of Martin Gardener’s “Lie Speller.” This collaboration with Tom Stone is clear, visual and baffling.

You’ll never leave for a gig without Post-It notes after reading “PreMEMOnition.” This prediction effect is a joy to perform and allows you to set the gaff up right in front of the audience. I prefer the alternate handling where the deck can be cut in the open rather than under the table.

With an eye for solving and simplifying, Blomberg also shares several variants to popular tricks. In “Signed Hot Mama,” he offers a novel solution to have the odd-backed card signed. In “Tattwo You,” he eliminates the need for the gaff required in Bannon’s original “Tattoo You.”

“Defect Gatherer” is Blomberg’s take on the Moving Hole plot. I like how he utilizes the Erdnase change, not as a color change at all, but as a justified action to put the cards in position.

In “Marlo Might Have Liked This,” Tomas offers his take on Herbert Milton’s “Sympathetic Cards” plot using two different colored decks. The two packets get a little too cozy for my taste, but the final result is clean and baffling.

In “One Behead,” Blomberg’s twist on “Twisting the Aces,” one extra card allows you to be both one ahead and one behind. Still, I preferred the variation by Alex Adlercreutz that does not require the extra card.

“Multiplex Re+Set” is Blomberg’s standout version of Paul Harris’ “Reset” using four different pockets. Akin to the interchange plot created by Jerry Sadowitz and popularized by Jack Carpenter, Blomberg offers a clean handling with no jacket required.

Blomberg proves his ability to devise engaging presentations, such as with “Hard Card Paradox.” This parlor presentation for Brainwave is 90% presentation, layered with clever lines to heighten impact and audience connection.

When challenged to develop a solution to Open Travelers using just four cards, Blomberg developed “Cardpool.” It’s a clever and fooling piece of magic.

There are several assemblies to explore. I liked “Gasp! Scream!,” an Ace assembly that uses just four Kings, four Aces and the cardbox. Another is “Rhythm Switch Assembly,” which features an exceptionally clean and instantaneous assembly. Be sure to explore the two variations. Perhaps the most powerful assembly is “TSAR” (Technicolor Progressive Assembly with Reverse).

Several times in the book we are reminded of the friendship and collaboration between Blomberg, Andi Gladwin and the late Jack Parker. A few of the effects were inspired by Parker, then taken to a new level by Blomberg. “Time After Time” is Blomberg’s variation of Jack Parker’s “The Third Time’s The Charm.” Three spectators find their own selections after random mixing, dealing and exchanging of packets. The best part is the he made it completely impromptu by eliminating the half-deck stack.

I’ve only discussed a handful of items from this vast collection of ideas, twists, intricate moves and unexpected surprises. Two decades in the making, it was well worth the wait.

I thoroughly enjoyed my trip to Blomberg Laboratories. It’s a place I’ll keep visiting. I’m certain you’ll do the same as you explore and become inspired to devise some experiments of your own.

Copyright 2015 by The Genii Corporation.

 

Victor Boyd

WOW! This book is fantastic! Just the book itself is amazing! The quality is top! Not much in it for none card guys but there's enough in there for everyone!

 

Official review from MAGIC Magazine

From the November 2015 MAGIC Magazine. Reviewed by Jared Kopf

Magic’s most offbeat thinkers can see angles and dimensions invisible to the rest of us. Artists such as Gaëtan Bloom, T.A. Waters, and Stewart James have created a separate canon within magic literature: a collection of beautifully strange pieces revealed by the maddest of muses. The polymath Tomas Blomberg is one of these unique inventors. The muse is talking and, apparently, Tomas is all ears.

I was convinced of Tomas Blomberg’s brilliance well before I finished Andi Gladwin’s beautiful new book on the magic of this inventor. Only a few of the 65 entries really appealed to me, but there is no doubt that everything in this book bears the stamp of having been created by an uncommonly nimble mind.
It’s difficult to give a précis of a book that defies summarization, but a quick description of a few favorites should be enough to convince anyone how special this tome is. The first entry, The Konami Code, uses a stack of photographs. Each picture features a person pointing in one of the four cardinal directions. The participant grabs a handful of photos and mixes them; meanwhile, the performer takes the remaining pictures and deals them face down into a matrix. Once the participant has finished shuffling her photos, she deals them onto the face-down pictures, using the direction in which each person is pointing to randomly determine where each picture should go. This produces a chain of pointing fingers that leads ultimately to a single face-down photograph. Upon turning it over, the spectator realizes she has found the only picture of the magician in the collection, and he is pointing right at her. This trick is clever, commercial, and almost impossible to reconstruct.

Torn Uncut Card Sheet is the only version of the 52-on-1 gag that I will ever consider using. Unlike the standard version, which uses a specially printed playing card that exists only for the sake of a hackneyed magic joke, this one uses a poster-sized, uncut sheet of playing cards — the collector’s item popularized recently by Dan & Dave Buck. Here, the performer shows an envelope containing a prediction and has a card selected. From the envelope, he removes torn pieces of the uncut sheet, which he assembles like a jigsaw puzzle to form a full face-down rectangle on the table. He explains that the last time he showed this eight-by-seven grid, the man he was performing for tore it up in disgust. The magician gathers the pieces and reassembles them; this time, however, although the rectangle remains an eight-by-seven grid, one card in the middle of the sheet is missing. Turning the pieces face up, he reveals that this is the very card the person selected a moment ago. This effect, which utilizes a wonderful paradox by the great Paul Curry, is so puzzling that it raises this timeworn gag into a stunning mystery.

Photo Vibrations is another effect with photographs, and it’ll fool anyone. After shuffling a large stack of portraits, the spectator takes one picture after another from the top of the face-down stack and concentrates on the image. Each time, the performer is able to describe the person seen in the photograph. He can tell whether it is a man or woman, a child or adult. He can even describe the person’s hair color and demeanor. The method relies on Blomberg’s Interlocked Gilbreath concept, which is, as Max Maven famously said of the original Gilbreath Principle, “a thing of terrifying beauty.”

If Blomberg had come up with only one of these three items, his reputation as one of the cleverest creators alive would be secure, but he has also come up with dozens of excellent card effects that could make dozens of reputations. Standouts here include an ungaffed version of John Bannon’s neoclassic Tattoo You from Smoke & Mirrors, and a version of Al Baker’s Card and Number that uses a regular pack of cards wrapped in a ribbon, which seems to prevent manipulation of the cards but actually facilitates it. Blomberg has also come up with a profusion of gambling routines, Ace assemblies, rubber band tricks, double lifts, sunken key cards, packet tricks, and bar bets. And once you’ve read all of that, there’s still more.

Andi Gladwin’s able pen has left nothing of Blomberg’s complex work to the imagination. His book is sure to become a classic, and he is well on his way to becoming one of the best technical writers and book designers in magic. The line drawings are also quite lovely. They are credited to “Tomas Blomberg’s computer.” Of course they are.