• 80s Underground Cassette Culture Volume 1 (2xLP) (CY80LP01)

  • Contort Yourself is extremely proud to present a double LP of original 80s underground cassette music.

    The 1980s. Neo-liberal excess. Crumbling communism. Military juntas ruling with an iron fist. And of course, freaked out music. Contort Yourself are turning back the clock and returning to an unholy fount of inspiration with "80s Underground Cassette Culture Volume 1." A buffet of beaten up and brutalised tracks are on offer from unknown outfits and respected experimenters. Across two LPs expect to find noise reductions, post punk bitterness, no wave grunts, distortion soaked strings and vocals lost in a hail of pain. A road map into the weird and wild world of DIY back alley artists who, armed with only a tape and an idea, gave the established music norms a sharp fist to the throat.


    A1. East End Butchers - Assassins
    A2. Magthea - Magthea & Insanity (Extract)
    A3. Missing Persons - Rotten To The Core
    A4. Doxa Sinistra - The Other Stranger
    A5. PCR - Myths Of Seduction & Betrayal (Extract)

    B1. Urbain Autopsy & K... - Tribal Moment
    B2. Human Flesh - Ancient Smiles
    B3. Nocturnal Emissions - Fat Slimey Parasites
    B4. Merzbow - D.D.T.
    B5. DDV - If You're Looking For Trouble

    C1. ALU - Fies Sein
    C2. Menko - The First Kiss
    C3. Die Klopferbande - Cadillac Im Ghetto
    C4. Jacinthebox - Wipe The Church
    C5. Cripure S.A. - Little Meat
    C6. Software - Human Situation

    D1. Felix Menkar - Buscando El Espacio Interior
    D2. Blackhouse - Numerology
    D3. Ende Shneafliet - Twistin' On The Tombstones
    D4. Muziekkamer - Being Home Tonight
    D5. Dead Tech - Catalavox


    Compiled by Murray CY
    Artwork layout/design - Fraserton Simth
    Mastered at Optimum Mastering
    FORMAT: Double vinyl LP with gatefold sleeve, printed inner sleeves and 2 inserts

    RELEASE DATE: 19/10/17

    VINYL: JUNO and all other good record shops


    "Considering the wild, untamed nature of releases on Contort Yourself to date, the premise of this compilation is a tantalizing prospect. Digging deep into the underbelly of 1980s minimal wave, industrial and much more fringe activity besides, this extensive collection is not for the faint hearted. There are moments of beauty, moments of horror and plenty of just plain weird transmissions that evoke the era they came from so powerfully. Doxa Sinistra, Human Flesh and an early outing by Merzbow are all standouts in what is a truly wonderful document of a fearless time in genuinely underground music." - Juno

    "80s Underground Cassette Culture Volume 1 could function as a miniature Nurse With Wound list for the the tape underground of its chosen era, but it also documents an alternative history of experimental music...excellent compilation." - The Wire

    "Head ready to burst, ears ready to bleed, Contort Yourself have pulled off a blinder here. Listen, take a trip down the memory lane that you didn’t know existed and, be impressed." - Louder Than War

    "80s Underground Cassette Culture Volume 1 is a truly brilliant and eye-opening selection, one to be cherished by anyone who got excited by Ecstatic's Trax comp and Optimo's stellar [Cease & Desist] comp." - BLEEP

    "This anthology places its contents onto a once elusive format to resounding success; hopefully, more volumes will come to fruition."- The Vinyl District

     "The four sides reminded me of classic double LPs as ‘The Elephant Table Album’ or  'Three Minute Symphonie’ and it is to be hoped that thirty years from now this 2LP will rank among these from thirty years ago as great places to step in and find out about the great musical underground of the 80s." - Vital Weekly

  • THE WIRE (November 2017) 

    80s Underground Cassette Culture
    Vol 1
    Contort Yourself DL/LP
    The advantages of the format responsible
    for the recent upsurge in cassette tape
    usage were similarly behind the format’s
    1980s heyday. The freedom to reproduce,
    practical ease of recording and smaller
    postal package size were big wins for
    fringe artists in particular, and thus an
    international underground of tape-released
    music surfaced. This compilation by
    Glaswegian label Contort Yourself joins the
    dots between several obscure artists from
    the era in suitably erratic fashion, filling four
    sides of vinyl with murky proto-noise, prototechno,
    and primitive industrial sounds
    largely from across Europe.
    Besides happily recording in lo-fi, the
    common denominator between these artists
    is a rejection of 80s excess and a pretty
    uniformly angry mood. This had them all
    coercing young electronic gear into odd new
    timbres, such as Dutch new wave trio Ende
    Shneafliet, blaring a maddeningly wobbly
    high-pitched synth over proto-electro
    beats on a track dating back to a 1981 tape
    release. The primal drum machine backing
    up “Assassins” by Sydney duo East End
    Butchers is similarly brutal and ugly – a
    bastardised nightmare compared to the
    Moroder and Prince hits of the time made
    with similar gear.
    It’s tough to trace the direct impact
    and influence of these obscure tracks, but
    multiple genres get foreshadowed across the
    collection. “The Other Stranger” by Dutch
    outfit Doxa Sinistra sounds like a bouncy
    mid-tempo Aphex Twin. Another Dutch group
    – a duo called Muziekkamer – also provide
    an album highlight of coarse drum machine
    rhythms not a million miles from the bruising
    modern productions of Perc, despite dating
    back to the mid-80s.
    80s Underground Cassette Culture
    Volume 1 could function as a miniature Nurse
    With Wound list for the the tape underground
    of its chosen era, but it also documents an
    alternative history of experimental music,
    uninterested in the dominant Anglo-American
    continuum. Most interesting is the hitherto
    under-documented inventiveness of the
    Belgian, Dutch and Spanish undergrounds
    of the time, all represented on this excellent
    Tristan Bath