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V.A. (VARIOUS ARTISTS) - Framework Seasonal Issue #5, Summer 2013

Format: CD-R
Label & Cat.Number: Framework Editions
Release Year: 2013
Note: limited fund-raising release for the great 'Framework' radioprogramme dedicated to all kinds of experimental field recordings, run by PATRICK McGINLEY aka MURMER; this edition presents obscure amateur location recordings by two East Midlands 'tape recording clubs' made 1959-1978 (!), from airport sounds to zoo recordings to a girls football match, these documents are as coming from an aural picture book, a vivid insight into British history..
Price (incl. 19% VAT): €20.00

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"Location recordings by East Midlands tape recording clubs (1959-1978)

Collected together for the first time on this CD are a selection of vintage amateur field recordings from two East Midlands tape clubs: The Derby Tape Recording Club and The Leicester Tape Recording Club. These are not pristine archival recordings, they bear many traces of their age and origin: tape hiss and distortion, harsh pause button edits, wow and flutter. Accepting these extraneous audio artefacts as inherent to the medium of tape, no attempts have been made to clean or restore them.

The little known phenomenon of tape recording clubs reached its peak in the 60s and 70s, as tape recording technology became more attainable to the hobbyist. Many of these recordings were made in the days when recording outdoors entailed lugging a heavy and cumbersome open-reel recorder out and about on location. This could prove impractical for the individual so being part of a club, with the associated benefits of pooled resources and shared knowledge, made things a little easier. The appearance of affordable portable battery recorders in the early 60s granted tape enthusiasts unprecedented freedom as to what and where they could record, a freedom which most tape club members exploited to the full. Some of these recordings were made on organised outings as part of the tape clubs programme of activities, others were made independently by individual members. The variety and imagination displayed here is a testament to the pioneering spirit of a dedicated group of amateurs, our forebears in the pursuit of recorded sound."

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"Thank God for the nerds! The Framework Seasonal series continues with an amazing set of archival recordings from the Derby Tape Recording Club and the Leicester Tape Recording Club. Yeah, you read that right. Tape Recording Clubs! These represented two regional clubs which operated in this little known phenomenon that reached a peak in the late '60s and early '70s with commercial grade technology becoming readily available. Many of these clubs would actually record onto reel-to-reel tape, organizing outings upon which the participants would pool resources in order to collect primitive field recordings of motorcycle races, the howler monkeys from the Paignton Zoo, bowling tournaments, a guided tour from a power turbine... and yeah, there's a recorded example of trainspotting with a young man reading off the line and make of a particular train to the heart of England. Many of these recordings show their age with lots of tape hiss, compressed frequencies, clunky hard-stop edits, and a few bits of blown-out microphone distortion; but, really when is that a criticism here at aQuarius? But the charms of these recordings are not just found in the patina of crackle and flutter; the documented sounds themselves are often accompanied by narration from the various club members. One of our favorite field recordings is the bicycle ride of Leicester's John Buckler, who huffs and puffs his way through traffic noting the fish and chips shop to his left and how out of shape he is from a two minute bike ride uphill. There's a couple extracts from the Derby club's Christmas Party including a spirited round of musical chairs; and another gem is the radio advertisement from the Derby club complete with Derbyshire-ish bleepity electronics and an earnest call to join the club. Library Music enthusiasts will be rapt with joy over these antiquated sounds! What a gem of an album!
As we've noted before, the proceeds from the Framework Seasonal discs go to support the Framework Radio series of broadcasts dedicated to field recordings and their use in composition. Hence, the price." [Aquarius Records]