Dan Reeves of Soft Walls celebrates the tape in the run up to Cassette Store Day this Saturday, September 27.

Dan Reeves of Soft Walls celebrates the tape in the run up to Cassette Store Day this Saturday, September 27.

Launched just last year by a group of UK cassette label owners including Steven Rose of Sexbeat Records, Matt Flag of Suplex Cassettes, and Jen Long of Kissability, Cassette Store Day is raising its game this year, September 27, with a ton more releases and a US branch run by American cassette aficionados Burger Records.

In the run up to the big day, this Saturday, we’re asking some of the diverse Cassette Store Day artists to tell us about their favourite cassettes and explain what the humble tape means to them. Fourth up is Dan Reeves of London-based psychedelic outfit Soft Walls.

Cassette Store Day Pop Quiz #4

What’s the first cassette you owned?
I can’t remember exactly. It was either Michael Jackson’s Bad, which was bought for me when I was in hospital as a kid with appendicitis, or, a copied tape of Guns N’ Roses Appetite For Destruction, which was given to me by a friend, who had in turn inherited it from his older brother. I must have been about 10 I think. I loved it so much and used to listen to it on repeat in my bedroom. I even went to the local library and copied the front cover, so I had a hand-drawn replication of the sleeve. It was pretty bad-ass. I was into the skulls.

What was the last cassette you bought?
I think the last tape I bought was Feature’s excellent Culture Of The Copy EP, on Tye Die Tapes.

What’s your favourite cassette ever?
One that sticks in my mind from recent years is The Chad Tape which is a collection of ambient and noise pieces by Chris Reimer, who was the guitarist in one of my favourite bands, Women. Chris died suddenly in his sleep in 2012, and this tape collection was compiled by his friend Chad Van Gaalen. It’s a really nice collection of stuff that may have never seen the light of day. Chris was a great talent, this tape if further proof of that.

What’s the best cassette artwork you’ve ever seen?
At the moment I’d say that Where To Now?’s output is pretty flawless, James Hines is a visual genius. I love the way the aesthetic he’s created runs throughout all their releases. they’re instantly recognisable. Likewise, I really, really like the artwork on everything that comes out on Night People too. Anything where there is a consistent style or theme I’m a sucker for!

What’s the best mix cassette you ever gave/received?
Joe who plays guitar in the Soft Walls live band made me an excellent ’60s garage tape which I’ve repeatedly spun. And for my birthday last year my buddies Tina and Andy from Teardrop Factory made me a fantastic ’60s/’90s tape with an era on each side. The artwork (which Tina put together) was a montage of screaming Beatles fans.

Why are cassettes awesome?
Because they are cheap and look great. Take a chance on something you don’t know!

What cassette release are you most looking forward to this store cassette day?
UV Race compilation on Suplex is a must-buy for me as I don’t physically own any of their LPs, also the compilation that Negative Space are putting out looks ace, which Soft Walls also happen to have a song on FYI.

See more from our Cassette Store Day takeover.