Published Jan 09, 2015Jesse Locke began Planet of the Tapes back in 2010, but the label had been on a three-year hiatus after the founder — who plays drums with acts like Century Palm, Ketamines and Jay Holy — moved from Montreal to Toronto. Now, he has restarted the imprint and has lined up a release from Space Bros., the latest project from Vancouver experimenter Tom Whalen.
In its new incarnation, Planet of the Tapes is co-run with Tough Age frontman Jarrett Evan Samson (who previously ran his own label called Geographing). The first release came back in the fall with an EP from Century Palm, and now it's been followed with the aforementioned Space Bros. tape.
This new album is called In the Dreamtime of the Saucer People. It was released digitally this week via Bandcamp, with the cassette due to ship out later this month, around January 29. The tapes have a so-called "deep space purple" shell.
For those unfamiliar with Whalen, he's a live member of Jay Arner's band (plus Arner's side-project Energy Slime), and has various other aliases like Cadillac Spring, New Vaders and Smooth FX. He used to play bass in Samson's old band Korean Gut, hence the connection to Planet of the Tapes.
As Space Bros., his work is a surreal sci-fi voyage of retro-futurist electronic abstractions. Hear In the Dreamtime of the Saucer People below and order the tape here.
Here's Whalen's pretty far-out description of the album:
SPACE BROS.!! Music from a new genre called COSMIC DUST, recorded sometime between 2010 and 2011 following extensive research of the Unarius Science Academy. Founded by a mysterious new age couple in 1954, Unarius flourished in a time where people were hungry for alternative beliefs. Their charming educational films (especially "Unarius: The Arrival," which is sampled heavily in this tape) and vague prophecies had me hooked, as I began reading essays on the group and their fascinating history. Uriel, the prophet of Unarius, wears gigantic light-up gowns as she addresses her followers with a sceptre. Even though Uriel has since passed away, the Academy is still active today and their YouTube channel provides hours of entertainment if you wish to learn about the Interplanetary Confederation or the Underground Cities of Mars. Space Bros. is a reflection on past ideas of futurism and escapism, smeared in dizzy synthscapes, recorded in a bucket and re-recorded to digital.
As for Planet of the Tapes' future plans, Locke told Exclaim!, "We've got plans for a few more upcoming releases, as well as some dream reissues."
In other words, stay tuned.