Friday, October 21, 2011

As the Tape Turns

When it comes to format, obviously, I live and die by the vinyl album, but I do have a soft spot for the cassette, too. I estimate about half of my music purchases from 1982 until I started buying CDs in 1988 were tapes, and there weren't many days during my teen years that I wasn't hard at work on the next ultimate mix tape. I have a Volkswagen Jetta Wagon with a CD player and tape deck, and the tape deck still gets quite a bit of use. In fact, I just listened to fIREHOSE's 'fROM OHIO' on cassette during a trip to the grocery store this week.

I have noticed a growing interest in the format. From Rob Sheffield's lovely book 'Love Is a Mix Tape' to Joyful Noise reissuing Dinosaur Jr.'s 'Bug' on tape, the cassette is making a mini comeback. You can even get a box set of 10 of Montreal records on tape. Since the records included in the box are from the years 1997 to 2010, I can't help but wonder if any these titles were ever released this way, but I digress.

All of this tape talk is the long way to me recommending a "reel" fun article I read today in the Wall Street Journal on the mini cassette revolution. I found it particularly interesting that there is an Oakland-based label called Sanity Muffin that only distributes cassettes. Feeling nostalgic?

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