The Case for CDs
-- as CD sales continue to plummet
, Grantland's Steven Hyden takes a "glass-half-full perspective" on those numbers, discusses format nostalgia, and the five types of albums that justify the continued existence of CDs. [more inside]
After dropping sweet synthwave tunes for two years, Le Cassette have released their first album "Left to Our Own Devices
," available on (of course) cassette tape
The Delian Mode (Kara Blake, 2009)
- A 25-minute documentary about composer and pioneering electronic musician Delia Derbyshire
, perhaps most familiar to Mefites for writing the theme song for "Doctor Who".
One of the founders and pioneers of electroacoustic music is gone.
Parmegiani was a prolific
and distinctive electronic musician. His works are currently being played on sfsound.org
radio. [more inside]
Take a stroll down Memorex Lane and relive those golden days of yore at Project C-90: An Ultimate Audiotape Guide
. Peruse their insanely exhaustive galleries of the Compact Cassettes
you used to listen to your Hall and Oates or your Led Zeppelin or your hip hop mixes on, the Microcassettes
you once played back to catch that all-important message from your mother, your girlfriend, boyfriend or ex, and the Minicassettes
, which you probably never used at all.
Even people who would normally never care about something Judy Garland-related marvel at the incredible pathos and dark insanity of these tapes, which come off like Garland performing in a one-woman show written by Samuel Beckett.
Bizarrely unsettling tape art
"A ballet dancer needs a mirror to perfect her style, her technique. A singer needs the same -- an aural mirror."
In 1950 and '51, Japan’s first reel-to-reel tape recorders, the "G-Type
" (for gov't use)
and the "H-1
" (for home use)
were released by a company named Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo. Music student Norio Ohga was unimpressed by the wobbly sound of "Talking Paper
," so he wrote a note complaining to the firm's founders, who hired him. Mr. Ohga never achieved his original dream of becoming a baritone opera singer, but the future President of TTK, (later renamed Sony,) would still make an indelible, global impact on the world of music -- including the development and introduction of the compact disc. Mr. Ohga died on April 24, 2011
. [more inside]
SLYT of one of your favorite cats!
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker is refusing to talk to Senate Democrats in (or rather currently not in
) his state. He is, however, apparently willing to talk to David Koch, because that's who The Buffalo Beast
's Ian Murphy pretended to be when he got on the phone with Walker and recorded a 20-minute conversation
about breaking unions, tricking the Democrats into coming back to pass legislation
, the hotness of Mika Brzezinski, and how Walker would love to be "shown a good time" next time he visits Koch in California. [more inside]
may have been the big news, but there were numerous other data breaches in 2010. [more inside]
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
Music! - A 1968 documentary by the National Music Council of Great Britain, featuring folk singing, The Beatles, and even early electronic music produced by tape splicing. Part 1
, part 2
, part 3
, part 4
, part 5
For television stations around the world, December is the season of the Christmas tape
. Unlike ordinary blooper reels, Christmas tapes (also known as goof tapes) are produced as entertainment for the staff Christmas party, with the intention that they will never be seen by the general public. Tropes of the genre include
cruel practical jokes
, after-hours misuse of the studio's green screen
, in-jokes about unreliable equipment
, sarcastic assessments of colleagues' work habits
, and the usual piece-to-camera screwups
. The B-B-C's tradition of in-house production, however, has ensured that its Christmas tapes contain such oddities as indecent daleks
, Nazi weather presenters
and on one occasion, a rather bad
. Most links mildly NSFW.
DVDs to save the music industry (video interview)
Record Producers discuss illegal downloads, home
studios and why 5.1 DVD sound just might be the future. [more inside]
400 years ago today, Thomas Thorpe
entered into the Stationers' Register
a book titled "Shake-Speares Sonnets"
. However, Clinton Heylin argues
that - like Bob Dylan's Basement Tapes
- the Sonnets
were never intended for a wide audience. "In both cases, they were killing time and at the same time dealing with huge personal issues in a private way, which they never conceived of coming out publicly."
The Tone Generation
is a radio series by Ian Helliwell 'looking at different themes or composers in the era of analogue tape and early synthesizer technology'. The original globe-trotting series: Great Britain
, Eastern Europe
, Rest of World
. Bonus programmes: Expo 58
, The RCA Synthesizer
. All links are to MP3 files, except the first one. Alternatively, you can slurp down the lot in one go by subscribing to the podcast feed
Dual cassette deck DJ.
DJ Ramsey of Scottsdale, Arizona does with cassettes what DJ's have done for decades with vinyl records, CDs and mp3s.
makes incredible art
using packing tape on plexiglass. (via
Every week RJ from Sweet Thunder
posts excerpts from one of a kind cassette tape recordings he finds at garage sales. Found due to Week 15
]. Other greats: Week 49
, Week 73
, Week 86
. Dog damn.
Shut Up Tape
It's what all the fashionable abusers are putting over their spouses' mouths these days. Of course, there are more socially acceptable uses, like in movie theaters or anywhere cell phones are overused. And police departments are buying it by the case for crowd control. Don't put guests with opposing viewpoints on your talk show without it!
You may have never heard of it, but you've damn near certain heard it
. The Mellotron (FortuneCity link)
is a keyboard instrument; each of its keys triggers a tape
with a pre-recorded instrument on it. It was effectively the world's first sample player. [more inside]
- winner of the New Statesman New Media Award. Explore sound. Via the Sonic Arts Network
, UK exponents of Electroacoustic music
Stuck to their prom dates.
Since 2001, Duck brand duct tape has sponsored a scholarship contest
, open to any high school students willing to go to prom in outfits made of duct tape. This year's fashions range from the classic silver
to wilder colors and patterns
, and occasionally veer into the just plain strange
. Dip into the archives
Tip and Shout: 2'' Tape:
"But last Friday, [Jeff] Tweedy hit a snag as he prepared for a session in Wilco's
Chicago studio space: Nobody could find any of the professional-grade audio tape the band is accustomed to using."
Gecko Feet might hold the key to inventing a self-cleaning adhesive.
The super-sticky feet of geckos allow them to adhere to almost any surface. But even though geckos never groom their feet, they don't lose their sticking power over time. Why? Turns out they're self-cleaning.
. Scientists hope to be able to use this knowledge to create new, better kinds of dry tape and adhesives, like "duct tape that never loses its stick or bandages that come off without sticky residue or an 'ouch.'" Research info is here
, along with some gecko pics.
The great duct tape conspiracy?
It seems that 46% of all duct tape is produced by the Manco Company
of Avon, Ohio. The company, a division on Henkel inc, was run by Jack Kahl until just after Bush's 2000 election. It turns out Mr. Kahl donated no less than $100,000 to GOP committees in the 2000 election cycle. Has Tom Ridge become the official spokesperson of all things duct tape purely out of his concerns for our security
here in the Homeland? Got
duct tape? via boingboing
Hmmm. Duct tape seems to be a fix for everything, even curing warts. Err...don't try this on the genital kind, I guess.
Nixon's Last Secret
The race is on to try to recover the missing 18 1/2 minutes of the infamous Tape 342. While it will be interesting to see what's on the tape (if it can be recovered) the big question is this: Why erase part of one tape and leave all the others intact?
Good news for Mac-owning, Celine Dione fans "The process is pretty easy: I took a bit of electrical tape and applied it to the edge of the CD, the 'shiny side', - just a half inch of the stuff - and aligned it with the very edge 'data track session ring' visible on these copy protected CDs. Took the tape out to the outside of the CD and put it in my CD Rom."
Bin Laden 'heard' in Tora Bora
Ah, yes, but were his lips moving in sync?
Tape released on downed Cessna.
I just heard the audio tape from the downing of the Missionary Cessna by the Peruvian jet - it is far worse than I had ever expected. This has to be one of the most disturbing things I have heard on NPR in a while. I wasn't able to find the audio online, but there are excepts in this article. It all boils down to poor communications, and IMO poor training - the US pilots should have known more Spanish, and the Peruvians should have known more English.
Bush campaign source of debate tape smear attempt.
In this campaign follow-up sure to delight all you anti-Bushies--in case Rove's possible insider trading or Bush's disingenuous charm offensive in Europe hasn't sufficed--an ex-Bush campaign aide pleads guilty.