The Sheffield Tape Archive is a Post-Punk Demo Treasure Trove « Bandcamp Daily
In the late 1970s, Sheffield—the former industrial powerhouse in the North of England—was a city in a state of flux. It was still defined by its manufacturing industry, one that churned out masses of steel and coal. Tall brutalist concrete buildings towered over the city’s skyline, drawing comparisons to Fritz Lang’s Metropolis. “Sheffield was bleak, colorless and derelict,” Jane Wilson of I’m So Hollow remembers, but it would soon become a city defined by its colorful musical output. Despite pockets of crumbling desolation and dreariness, Sheffield began to birth a cultural movement rooted in glamour, Dadaism and futuristic sounds that were both a contrast to, and a representation of, its surroundings. The music took many forms around this period, some groups harnessing the momentum of punk and distilling it into wiry and urgent post-punk, others reimagining the industrial force of the steel mills, whilst others went about creating a template for a new type of electronic music through synthesizer experimentations, tape loops and cavernous plunges into territories unknown.