This is a raw, unedited and unaltered recording of a 13 year old cassette tape side. In 2000, I was in a band with three other friends, and we used to regularly rehearse in my father's house, which was in the actual middle of nowhere. He lived over a mile away from a single neighbor, in the deep country, right next to acres of overgrown swamps, on a plot of land that has remained in my family since sometime around the Civil War.
Living there with him was hard sometimes, especially at night - you'd walk outside and swear someone was watching. Additionally, every time my friends or my sister's friends would visit, they would inevitably experience some kind of sound oddity (disembodied voices from outside or elsewhere in the house, strange noises from within the swamp like a heartbeat) that left them never wanting to come back again. Occasionally, this activity would also include failing lights, spots of unusual cold or even glimpses of figures in your peripheral vision - although the latter could always be attributed to the mind making things up in a stressful situation.
On the night this tape was recorded, my band had just finished rehearsing and we were in prime prankster mode. Our drummer wanted to sleep on the couch, as he had to clock into work early the next day, and we were determined to mess with him. Me being the perpetual documentarian that I am, I decided it would be *extra* fun if we recorded it, so I set up a mic discreetly next to the sofa where he wouldn't see, and rolled tape. After a few minutes, we relented and went into my room on the other side of the house to let him sleep. A few minutes later, he bursts into my room scared out of his mind, telling us he felt cold for no reason, and that there were things tapping at the windows and he heard things moving the shades, even though the windows were shut and there was no one else in the house. We immediately assumed he was trying to get even with us, and then I realized we had taped the entire thing. We got the tape, brought it back and decided if anything actually happened, it would have been recorded. Sure enough, after you hear us leave the room, things start to bump the microphone and even stranger rhythmic pulses start to take the audio over. We were shocked.
Even today, I have no explanation for what this really is. People might think I threw this together in a program, but rest assured every single person who was with me that night can verify that this tape is real. One of them even refused to ever come back to my father's place after this happened. It remains one of the weirdest experiences I've had in my lifetime of recording, and I thought the tape rip, along with the story of how it came to be, would make interesting night time discussion. As Ed Wood wrote in Plan 9 From Outer Space: "Can you prove that it didn't happen?"
released November 11, 2013
Originally released digitally as "Artifacts On Tape" at Milieu Music. Recorded by Brian Grainger, 2000 in Loris, South Carolina. Photograph taken by Brian in Loris, SC. This is CO_RD Tapes number NS#8, and eighth in the Naked Sound catalog series.
Thanks to my sister Katie for locating this tape after I thought it was lost for years.