Matthewdavid picks his top five tapes of the moment in advance of Friday's Top Tape night
Three months ago, August Brown's "A Sonic Rewind" profiled the nascent cassette tape revival occurring both local and nationally.
Over the last few years, the Low End Theory and Dublab-affiliated Matthewdavid has made it possible for your old Bell Biv Devoe tapes to be more than anachronisms. Between the Hyperion Tavern's monthly Top Tape nights that he co-presents with Dublab's Frosty, and his own Leaving Records imprint, dedicated to reissues and contemporary music, David is at the forefront of the new weird America.
For those who missed it, his recent podcast for XLR8R befits the Brainfeeder-signed artist's eclectic talents, including everything from Milli Vanilli, to his own work, to a "Mexican tape from the '80s [he] ended up throwing away." In honor of this Friday's Top Tape night (where anyone can sign up to tape DJ), we asked Matthew to list the top five tapes he's jamming at the moment. Press rewind if they haven't blown your mind.
-- Jeff Weiss
Matthewdavid's Top Five Tapes of the Moment
1. The Taxi Gang - Electro Reggae Volume 1 - Island Records - 1986
Maybe my favorite way to kick off a tape set is some danceable '80s reggae. Warm and melodic, purely authentic drum machines, all-instrumental.
2. yuk. - A D W A - Leaving Records - 2010
Chad Valencia from Los Angeles is a producer/collagist. Steady jungle rhythms, hypnotic vocals and found sounds straight from a lost tribal soul.
3. Lucky Dragons - New Utopia cassettes - Unreleased - 2009
Part of an art show and sound performance that Leaving Records curated, Lucky Dragons assembled about 10 separate 30-second endless looping cassettes for listening stations in the space where the event was held. I still have a couple, and they can be perfect to segue between songs during a tape set.
4. Delofi - Leaving - LRF007 - 2010
Tape-driven experimentalist from Cleveland has been on a Tascam 4-Track cassette recorder for his beat production since the beginning. The essence of cassette relevancy in hip-hop music.
5. Run DMT - Methamphibian - Tour-only cassette - 2010
This is maybe my favorite tape anyone has passed me all year. New-age loops and samples glide with ease, forming new waves even with pop songs and beats.
Photo: cassettes. Credit: Matthewdavid