Greetings all... My book - "Cassette Culture: Homemade Music and the Creative Spirit in the Pre-Internet Age" - is in the formatting stage and targeted for publication by Vinyl-on-Demand late first quarter 2019. I'm working on selecting photos and need assistance with my chapter on Creative Packaging...
Do any of you 1980s artists/networkers have any tapes from the 80s that were packaged in artistic/creative ways? The crazier the better. These must be PRE-1992.
If anyone is willing/able to send me high quality jpg images of such cassette albums I would be eternally grateful. I need these fairly quickly.
Please email me if you can help.
Here are a few examples of some of the more 'out there' imaginative cassettes from 1980s Op magazine reviews...
Robin Rose (ex synth player for Urban Verbs) sent in a piece called Reliquary that was inspired by the catastrophic Air Florida plane crash into the Potomac River in January 1982. The ‘fossilized’ cassette came mounted on a silk-screened board and the tape contains some quietly spooky sounds (a reliquary is a compartment for keeping religious or sacred objects).
Packaging of the Issue Award will have to be divided among the following two (group) entries. (First): Trance Port Tapes’ latest 2 releases both come wrapped in folded cardboard sleeves beautifully silkscreened in silver. The other half of the Outstanding Packaging trophy goes to PPP in France for the white polystyrene medical specimen beaker (? – my best guess) that cylindrically encased their Assemble Generale #4 international compilation.
Mark Murrell easily walks off with the Best Packaging honors this issue for sending in his letter on a 7-foot-long, 1/2 inch wide strip of paper wound into a scotch tape dispenser. The cassette, letter, poster, envelope, and everything were painted with beautiful airbrushed textures, a real impressive piece – shame I couldn’t frame and hang it. Dangling Ganglion it’s called and contains some very rich audio collage work with clever musical ideas added. Altogether a heady experience.
Peter Cathum, Gum (cassette): “Peter’s second cassette release, packaging by Christopher Grace. The cassette comes in a box with various titled photos relating to the pieces and a special listening device (assembly required). This tape is more complex both in composition and packaging than Cathum’s first release. The amazing use of sounds and instruments creates a very atmospherically conceptual piece. One gets the feeling that they have lived for one day as Peter Cathum.
The Young Schitzophrenics, AMOL OBOL 1#: “An interesting packaging job on this one. The cassette was totally wrapped in electrical tape, making it a very dicey job getting the tape off without cutting it in half. As for the tape itself – The first fifteen minutes sound like a metal foundry running at full tilt, complete with foghorns. This crashes well into clichéd shortwave radio static and then back to the foundry this time running at a much lower speed. A great tape to watch T.V. with.”
Jerry Kranitz published Aural Innovations: The Global Source For Space Rock Exploration from 1998-2016. AI started as a printed zine (nine issues from 1998-2000) and then went online for the duration. The web site also included regularly broadcast editions of Aural Innovations Space Rock Radio.