Who would believe that you can do stuff like this on daytime national radio? I was guest @ Virus, which is like the 4th channel of swiss national radio. They celebrate 50 years of cassettes for a whole week. And invited me for an interview and a cassette live mix, yesterday in the afternoon.
Here’s the backline I brought with me.
You can download the 15 minute improvisation from their site, you’ll find all the links at the end of this post. Just let me tell you first what I did play. For starters, I’m so messing around with those cassettes and the ten recorders that at the end I can’t tell anymore what was played when and if it was really played at all. Tried to put it together after the fact, and here’s the pic of the tapes I’ve certainly used.
- I started with simultaneous playback of two “brunette presents: THE HAPPY SOUND ORCHESTRA” . I especially dig the moment when the tapes go out of sync and you start to wonder what’s happening…
- you’ll also hear a prototype of a tape we never released because it was never finished, by my very good friend beni08; this is actually the part right after the intro, organ and Oberheim drums, very vintage – he gave me these recordings to say thank you for the Oberheim, found it in a thrift shop for 40$ ! But I’m no rhythm genius, so I gave it away. Beni08, by the way, is famous for being able to play any instrument, he’s worshipped by every musician in town; you can hear him in the bands of Nick Porsche or Big Zis (also in our band Hotcha And The Teenage Lesbians From Hell!)
- from field recordings I did in and around the Chartres Cathedral, you clearly can hear Yves Mendiant, who sung some of his liturgical Greatest Hits into my dictaphone. That was really 20 Euro well spent! Mendiant is working the cathedral, offering guidance, charms and flowers, for which he appreciates to be paid. If you ever go there, you can’t miss him. Say hello from me.
- a sports reporter from “50 famous moments in sport”, a recording I bought for a dollar on the sidewalks of NYC in the early 80′s
- radio journalist Michel Guillaume jumps out of a plane “J’ai eu très très peur….”
- apes in a zoo, a recording I made in the famous Seeteufel, Studen (CH)
- towards the end there’s some synth/organ stuff with horses, this is one of my all time favorites by Reitende Pferde Kassetten, from the early 80′s. I have two of their tapes, their speciality is to mix and cut up trashy tv dialogues with cheesy music. Simple but effective.
- Peter van Eyck in “The 1000 Eyes Of Dr. Mabuse” (so ein Hund spürt Dinge, die den Menschen verborgen bleiben)
- it ends with one of my heroes, Hawaii Jonny from Basel-Land. The last of the real independents, but gone for ever. My friend Alain (of Vinyl Overdose) and me, we’re still holding up his torch. I really must write the obituary for this great man, planning it for at least 5 years now!
Other tapes used are of the religious or esoteric kind, always very good for mixes. And stuff I recorded from shortwave radio, sound treatments, loops made at a shooting gallery (laughter, shells). At times also some kitsch, schlager and german beer music can be heard deep in the mix. All the loops are hardware made from the 80′s, by cutting/rescotching cassette tape.
It’s always amazing how these playbacks intertwine and create surprising frequency clashes. A vision of paradise: cheap tape recorders everywhere, an army of angels playing and mixing tapes constantly. You don’t believe me? Well, just listen.
all the links
- The presentation on the website of radio Virus
- Pics on their facebook page
- Download the whole set from the radio page
Und hie isch no einisch e Ybettig fo Schtude sim “Migroreschtorant Gränche”…. secret language, yeah!