"Anything is possible at Royal Mail"
September 22, 2010 1:42 PM   Subscribe

Dictaphone Parcel. Lauri Warsta put a tape recorder inside a box, set it recording, sealed up the box, sent it from London to Finland through the post, then animated the captured audio. Previously
posted by sleepcrime (13 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

 
Intriguing. A wonderful work of art.
posted by carpenter at 1:51 PM on September 22, 2010


Wow, I haven't seen reel-to-reel in about 30 years.

It would be cool to add a GPS view of the locations to something like this.
posted by beagle at 1:52 PM on September 22, 2010


Janek Schaefer did something a lot like this.
posted by klapaucius at 1:58 PM on September 22, 2010 [1 favorite]


Something tells me this wasn't actually recorded with a reel-to-reel dictaphone just put loose inside a box (physical damage, tape length, battery life, etc). There's a lot of artistic license here.
posted by zsazsa at 2:14 PM on September 22, 2010 [1 favorite]


Having once worked with reel-to-reel tape (radio 1970s/1980s), I can definitively state that was NOT recorded that way. I am more than a little disappointed that it only included one snippet of overheard conversation; the street noise and box-dropping sounds do NOT a narrative make.
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:18 PM on September 22, 2010


One: put a 'phone in a box.
posted by zippy at 2:20 PM on September 22, 2010 [5 favorites]


Something tells me this wasn't actually recorded with a reel-to-reel dictaphone just put loose inside a box (physical damage, tape length, battery life, etc). There's a lot of artistic license here.

Technically, he could get 25 hours of battery life using Sony's Alkaline batteries, but that would qualify as hazardous material in the US. Don't know about Europe, though.

The bigger concern is tape length. Ideally, in tape length he had up to 12 hrs and 48 min, but judging by the audio, I can assure you it wasn't recorded at 2 inches per second (technically 1 7/8", but I've always rounded it). Plus, that reel at the beginning was 7". So, he only had 6:24 which, again, sound degradation would have been very apparent.

But we'd be overthinking this, wouldn't we?
posted by Bathtub Bobsled at 2:29 PM on September 22, 2010 [1 favorite]


Sadly, the Previously post includes a site that now hosts malicious software (Google diagnostic of didntyouhear.com).
posted by filthy light thief at 3:03 PM on September 22, 2010


That's brilliant... reminds me of the London soundscapes
posted by nickrussell at 3:24 PM on September 22, 2010


Is recording people without their consent legal in the UK and finland?
posted by empath at 3:36 PM on September 22, 2010


I love it, but I did have the same skepticism of the recording equipment. Still perfectly enjoyable as a perfect fiction.
posted by L'Estrange Fruit at 5:02 PM on September 22, 2010


GEORGE:That's all there was. And yet, it speaks volumes. A low rumple. A metallic 'squink.' A 'glonk.' Someone crying out..."Dear God!" Let's start with, uh...with you, Wyck.

WYCK: George, Quinn here was moving a chair...he lost his balance and dropped it...it must have fallen on your briefcase, which, for some reason, contained a running tape recorder?
posted by davebush at 6:24 PM on September 22, 2010


I'm so glad I watched the video before reading the comments and having the more cynical/pedantic among you harsh my buzz. This was just cool. I don't care if it was what it claimed to be on the tin repurposed FedEx box.
posted by yiftach at 10:40 PM on September 22, 2010


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