Pete McPartlan

I'm a Tape Recorder Maniac (2010)

Single screen DVD loop of "Found footage"


Shown at Future Everything 2010 in Manchester as part of Contents May Vary's Cu Exhibition "I'm a Tape Recorder Maniac!!" is a collection of videos by youtube user CassetteMaster. CassetteMaster is a Virginian teenager who collects vintage audio equipment. For each tape recorder he finds he films a dead-pan introduction, explains the features at length and tests them out in front of the camera. He performs small experiments - routing mics through different decks, re-recording video from betamax or trying to sync audio from wobbly tapes with the digital video.

Ricky's youtube channel can be found here.

Review on Axisweb.

Special thanks to Ricky Kline AKA the Cassette Master for his permission to use his video collection.

At the time I had become fascinated by Ricky's youtube channel and simultaneously dismayed by the developments in 'new-media' art and I was asked by Contents May Vary to make something for their exhibition. I felt there was a lot very "spectacular" things to see and many super theoretical things but I saw very little that played with the medium and it's limitations. Ricky's videos are/were some of the best structural-materialist videos I have seen and yet they are made in this naieve way and were distrbuted on a relatively new digital platform. It raised lots of questions for me but ultimately I felt like my experiments with trashy media and junkyard tape recorders couldn't really compete any more, with this really pure illustration of the joy of this obselete technology.