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Out of stock

The Tapes

Selected Works 1982-1992

Label: Ecstatic

Format: LPx2

Genre: Experimental

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A fascinating, often dizzying insight to the primitive industrial minimalism of Italian siblings Giancarlo and Roberto Drago aka The Tapes, sourced from original tapes and pressed to vinyl for the first time ever. This set surveys a blind spot in most people's knowledge of early-'80s Italian underground music, framed against a backdrop of the Anni di piombo or Years of Lead -- a period of domestic political turmoil between the late '60s and early '80s -- and the mushroom shadow of nuclear war. Like their international tape-scene allies, The Tapes reacted to this world thru a matrix of mono-synths, drum machines, microphones, and four-track recorders, mostly recording ideas direct to tape in one take and making a virtue of their lo-fi set-up's infidelities and imperfections -- randomness and mistakes were embraced rather than discarded -- while absorbing the counter-cultural influence of William Burroughs and Throbbing Gristleand the sci-fi dystopia of J. G. Ballard and John Foxx. These 21 tracks, drawn from ten different limited tape releases, perfectly distill a wandering, weirdo spirit, ranging from the funereal swagger of "Tanz Fabrik" and the darkwave hip-thrust of "The Day of Silence" to freeform, motorik trajectories such as "Time Out of Joint" and singular enigmas like theActress-esque bobble of "The Wait" and the weightless, hyaline spindles of "Falso Movimento B2." Collected and compiled by Alessio Natalizia (akaNot Waving) and remastered by Matt ColtonSelected Works 1982-1992 represents a decade of modest but searching and instinctively grooving experimentation of the most precious and compelling kind. As Giancarlo Drago explains, "The Tapes was an unplanned experience, an unplanned need to express myself Looking back on this music I wonder sometimes how I did it -- the whole process from the concept to the completion. Everything I do now seems trivial and obvious and I just end up aborting the idea. And exactly for this reason I think that everything has its time, with a beginning and an end . . ."

Cat. number: ELP 017LP
Year: 2016