HalTapes is pleased and proud to present "Dictators of Lofi", a microcassette duo collaboration by J. Surak and Hal McGee. Jeff Surak sent to me a 62 minute microcassette of turntablist and electroacoustic sounds and I mixed with it my own 62 minute microcassette of shortwave radio and circuit bent electronics. Together we created two 31-minute stream of consciousness collages replete with happy accidents, strangeness, and crunchy, fun lo-fi sound happenings.
I have known Jeff Surak since the mid 1980s, when he recorded as 1348 and as a member of New Carrollton, and operated the Watergate Tapes label. In recent years he has recorded as Violet, operates the Zeromoon label of awesome experimental sounds, and produces the yearly famous Sonic Circuits Festival in Washington, D.C.
This is our first collaboration!
J. Surak sound sources and objects:
recorded on an Olympus Pearlcorder J300 microcassette recorder
- prepared records
- bowed suit of armor
- univox drum machine
- random field recordings
-On side two guest appearances by
-- Chris Videll & Chester Hawkins (voices)
-- Gary Rouzer (cello)
-- Jimmy Ghaphery (sax)
-- Daniel Barbiero (double bass)
-- Valerie Kuehne (cello & vocals)
Hal McGee sound sources and objects:
recorded on a Sony M-470 microcassette recorder
- open automobile window
- shortwave radio
- circuit bent Casio SK-1
Photograph by Jeff Surak of a huge dictaphone graphic that was displayed on the Staples office supplies store near his home, until recently, when it was replaced with something more "modern".