Working with Tapes – Reading about Tapes

It is two years now that I take care of staaltape, staalplaat’s cassette label. In doing so I have noticed that releasing cassettes follows its own law, but also a bit my own law. I thought of themes to which I could invite an artist, but I also had to think of the packaging. With every new release the challenge became bigger, simply because I had to think of a new design for every new tape. This was an appeasing process during which the idea took shape and form. Then when the first results were ready to be photographed, fulfillment defined my day.

For the sonic content, its structure, I also followed my taste: I like diversity. I also like to hear that someone took care of the composition of a piece, rather then taking care of having an occasional jam or try-out published.

I found it hard to find reviewers. (But maybe you can find me? Drop a line if you are interested in writing about staaltape releases).

But luckily I found Ed Pinsent of The Sound Projector. His review came unexpected. (It had been six months since I sent him this packet.)

In his review I could read what a great person I am ( and I thought: “O boy, couldn’t you have waited until my funeral?”). But to my heart warming pleasure I also encountered someone who recognized the work put into this releases by the sound artists, how they picked up the general idea, and – yes- my work doing all this packaging.

Here is some excerpts of the review:

“Guaranteed 40 minutes of odd cranial stimulation with this white mouse of mayhem, where the banalities of life on the street are gradually and subtly remade into grainy patterns of truthful radio interference.”

“Read all the contextual information you like about these performance-art like events, but nothing really serves as a map for navigating the low-key, nondescript experiences. Again, banality is another keynote and a general refusal of any form of conventional aesthetic grooming in favour of a directness and simplicity.”

“Wrapped up it be in tissue paper like a mummy. It was glued up at seam so I thought I would snap a photo before I broke the seal. Now the wrappings have fallen from the bones of Paris Tape Run 2″

“A real pleasure to receive these genuine, hand-made and vital pieces of radical avant-garde art.”

Read ‘The European Canon is here’ , the complete review


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