Monday, 13 October 2008

Tapes and tapes and tapes

Way before mpfrees and illegal downloading were killing music, some delicately placed sellotape on the top of your mum's Tina Turner cassette would allow you to record the whole of Bruno Brookes' flagship Radio 1 show. Little did we know it, but both Brookes and tapes were in decline.

Today, a crop of fledgling labels, motivated by a nostalgia for the "cassette boom" era and the sheer economics of tape production, are kicking off a (mini) cassette culture revolution for the 21st century. Don’t purge all your other media just yet, but the happy coincidence is that these new cassette releases have killer bands on too.


Showcasing 30 minutes of Gentle Friendly's bewildering noise pop, Stop Scratching, recently released their third compact cassette tape. Forthcoming further Stop Scratching tapes will land in the near future capturing the super sounds of Teeth and Chupacabra amongst others. Get them here.

Super exciting on the tape front is also the self-released three way cassette share from Graffiti Island, Male Bonding and the catchy lo fi punk of Pens, which we're rather taken with. Most rousing is however, Graffiti Island’s Modern Lovers-esque new wave. Their American lead singer, Pete, filled us in: "our drummer (Cherise) has one arm longer than the other which makes the drumming sound nice. We're inspired by things such as Dario Argento films/Bad Brains/Jan Terri/Ancient Greece/remote viewing/the Bubonic Plague and burritos." Each band has provided two tracks and all for the bargain price of £3. It goes on sale on 22 October and it's essential, preorder it here.

More future tape fun can be found via London/Canterbury fanzine turned record label, Fake Press. Their d├ębut release is planned to feature wonky electronica youngens, Magpied, and Pie In The Sky referencing (I hope) The Restaurant Mystery.
More info hither.

Next week, the phoenix from the format flames, laserdiscs!

Graffiti Island - 'Head hunters'.mp3

Words: SS

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