This week, an occult cassette with a trick under the hood:
MITAPE C-60 U.S. HIGH STANDARD TAPE
Somebody has left CAPS LOCK on when designing this. Still, the red, white and black looks great here.
The oily bits
As you may or may not know, I like to zoom in on the details, and although there doesn’t seem much to go for here, there is this.
Lubricated? For smooth running? Do they really mean that there is an oily substance inside the tape, and that they have managed to keep it separated from the tape itself? Only one way to find out!
The only bits that could benefit from a bit of grease are the tape guides, I think:
I took them off of course, but no lubricant to be found on the spindles. Still… it’s been 40 years!
In case you wonder about the brown stain on the top photo, that’s just some ferric dust.
Please note that I played this tape and that it still manages to look like this.
So much for smooth running!
The “U.S. High Standard” tells us where this tape probably originates from, but for the period I had to check my Russian connection. So it might be from 1977. Or it might not be, because there’s a radio show from 1974 on it. That’s strange, impossible even, or is it?
Let me take you to the other side
Upon playing this tape, I came across a recording of a Dutch radio show. The subject is medium Leslie Flint who is credited as having been one of the last psychics to use direct-voice mediumship. When taking part in séances with Flint, participants would report hearing the voices of the dead surrounding them in the room.
The recorded radio show apparently was broadcast shortly after an earlier show that was broadcast on December 29, 1974. This date is mentioned in this publication (PDF, Dutch only) by the Dutch Association Against Quackery as the date of the earlier airing.
In this recording the earlier show (that apparently caused quite a stir in The Netherlands) is discussed. Very entertaining 40-odd years on, and the right ambiance is set by the MITAPE, because it adds hisses en crackling. Could also just be a terrible recording, but in any case: it sounds like you’re in the middle of a séance yourself.