Friday, June 19, 2015
Cassette Review: T.a.p.e.s "Tapes"
[$3 // Edition of 50 // https://t-a-p-e-s.bandcamp.com/album/tapes]
Right away, I feel like I must warn you that T.a.p.e.s uses a lot of tape that it doesn't need. That is to say that even though this is on a cassette that is for professional dubbing and not just one of the standard blanks you'd buy in a store (Like Sony or what have you) it doesn't manage to use nearly anywhere the amount of time it is given. it's like someone buying a 90 minute blank at Walmart (And they still sell them at Walmarts near me, in a two pack for $3) and then put something like twenty minutes of music onto it.
Granted, I might be a little bit biased because I listen to every second of dead air to make sure nothing is in it, but yeah, I listened to a lot of dead air on this one. Which, again, doesn't really make sense to me because if they're using these pro type tapes they could have just ordered a more fitting length.
The music of T.a.p.e.s itself though is wonderful and more than makes up for the fact that I felt like I wasted time by listening to music that wasn't there. If anything, I'm more upset by the fact that there isn't music on every second of this cassette than that it was left blank in the first place. There is a distinct FNL guitar sound to begin and then electronic skips come in. There is a drum machine and it is instrumental, though if it did have vocals (and even without) it reminds me of Observer Drift and Watermark High.
Through rapid beats come synth tones and then it is simply electro-bliss waves. Somewhere between being tropical and just having a lot of soul, these songs take things to a whole new level and they can also border on carousel loops and roller discos. It's this type of sound which would make Santana most pleased. Drum machine claps bring out an audio clip in waves and before we know it the dead air makes its way home.
While I definitely don't believe that cassettes should take this long to end (because you want it to take a few minutes at most, so then you can flip to a freshly rewound side and enjoy more tunes), I am willing to do the fast forward/rewind dance for T.a.p.e.s because I just find this music to be so damn pleasing.