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Island Records '1+1' - anyone remember them?


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Old 18-05-2013, 22:35
Soundbox
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Today at the charity shop I picked up Grace Jones 'Warm Leatherette' album for 20p on cassette. On getting it home I was miffed to see that it was a fake - but on looking closely it is genuine. It is the whole album on one side (with tracklisting) and on the other side is a label with 'A FULL SIDE OF CHROME TAPE' printed. It then says:

1+1: The complete album is on side one. It is also on this side but if you prefer to record your own programme on this side just record in the normal way and our recording will be automatically erased. 1+1: One side of what you like, one side of whatever you like.

The inlay adds that it is BASF Chrome-dioxide tape (it smells of wax crayons and sounds superb so they must be right).

So who remembers the 1+1 range? It seems strange to think they are pushing for you to put your own recordings on with all the piracy scares of the time.
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Old 19-05-2013, 04:52
Chris Frost
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Blimey, that's a obscure blast from the past. Here's a pic on flickr for those interested http://www.flickr.com/photos/rk-dd/7874713278/

I remember a point in the mid to late 80's when it was announced that cassette was outselling LP. But I think that was more of a reflection on the new trend of listening to music on the move with Walkmans rather than any claim that cassette was the audiophile's format of choice. Certainly myself and my music collector friends never bought cassette where LP and later CD was available as the prime source. We made our own recordings to blank tape, so we missed the arrival and demise of the 1+1 cassette format.
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Old 19-05-2013, 10:33
Nigel Goodwin
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I never bought any (cassette was too low a quality), but I certainly remember the 1+1 tapes coming out, and that they used decent quality tape (for a change).
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Old 19-05-2013, 18:28
Soundbox
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Any idea what the year would have been? Does 1981 sound right?

As to cassette quality, I was on forced (due to budget) to buy used vinyl in my student days. I have had enough clicks, pops and wear distortion to see me through several lifetimes. I never minded tape hiss though as I could tune out of it after a few minutes.
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Old 19-05-2013, 18:38
mac2708
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Any idea what the year would have been? Does 1981 sound right?
Below the pic on flickr it says

Island 1+1 Cassette

Grace Jones "Nightclubbing", Island Records UK 1981 - "Plus a full side of blank chrome tape"
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Old 19-05-2013, 22:03
Chris Frost
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As to cassette quality, I was on forced (due to budget) to buy used vinyl in my student days. I have had enough clicks, pops and wear distortion to see me through several lifetimes. I never minded tape hiss though as I could tune out of it after a few minutes.
Well that's more about you buying poorly cared-for LPs. I have some s/h vinyl in my collection but it came from people who knew how to take care of a record and had decent playing gear.
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Old 20-05-2013, 00:06
Soundbox
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Well that's more about you buying poorly cared-for LPs. I have some s/h vinyl in my collection but it came from people who knew how to take care of a record and had decent playing gear.
I know this is off subject but I tell you Chris the early 90's were hard going if you wanted older music. The choises were:

Used vinyl - the likes of Queen, ELP and John Cale which I was buying were always well played because they were pop
music and unlike the mint easy listening or classical LP's (of which I had a few too) the record noise often competed with the quiet passages.


CD - these were often very expensive, poor quality with tape hiss and the shoddiest paper sleeves possible. Lots of 1970's material still not released (like Amazing Blondel and Fairport Convention). It was not until about 10 years ago that the 70's started to get the effort put into them.

So this chrome cassette I have now would have been much appreciated by me 20 years ago.
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Old 20-05-2013, 03:03
Chris Frost
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I'd certainly agree that the early 90's were a bad time for new vinyl. It all but disappeared from record shop shelves for a while.

I don't recall the same CD horror stories as you though. I was a relatively early adopter. I got my first CD player in early '84 when the format was less than 18 months old. Certainly the early releases had an abrasive sound because the engineers and studios hadn't got to grips with mastering for the digital format. Hiss would have been heard for the first time from the studio master tapes because of CDs dynamic range and top end extension, not to mention the AAD chain. However, by the later part of the mid 80's things had improved. Peter Gabriel's So album was released on CD in '86 and that didn't sound bad at all.
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