DAIS X RETROSPEKT
CP-81 CASSETTE PLAYER + C23 CASSETTE COMPILATION - TAPE
Release Date: December 15, 2023
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The legacy and lineage of Dais Records dovetails naturally with the mission statement of vintage electronics innovator Retrospekt: “Reviving retro tech for a new generation.” The fruit of their first collaboration is a chic, white, rose-adorned, limited-edition release of Retrospekt’s CP-81 portable cassette player containing an exclusive 19-track compilation cassette of unreleased material from the label's roster: C23. The title alludes to the year, the catalog number (DAIS223) and to the iconic UK indie collection C86, famously included with a 1986 issue of New Musical Express.
Dais co-founders Gibby Miller and Ryan Martin both came of age in the cassette era and remain champions of “the sacred nature of the analog object.” The medium’s customizable, affordable, and portable nature empowered generations of subcultures to document and disseminate their creations. Although the compact disc dominated much of the 1990s, tapes never went away. Martin is adamant about the format’s enduring potency: “Cassettes aren’t nostalgic, they’re relevant. Making a mixtape for a friend or love interest is a talismanic offering. It’s a reaching out, a sharing of discovery."
For Miller, too, cassette culture was seismic; he continues to see singular strengths in the limitations of older technologies: “Having a device solely dedicated to music may seem unique to a person today, but there’s also a purity in it. The ritual of hitting play. Feeling the hum of the machine. Flipping at the end of the side. Tapes changed everything for me.”
Retrospekt co-founders Adam and Kori Fuerst share a similar ethos. Although they initially started the company refurbishing vintage cameras, it has since expanded into tape players, radios, headphones, typewriters, Game Boys and beyond. Their passion for physicality, aesthetics and direct connection mirrors that of Miller and Martin: “These vintage machines aren’t obsolete – they still provide pleasure and enjoyment,” says Adam. “More and more people today realize this, and they want to have an organic, intentional experience without their metadata being tracked by some corporation.”
Dais in-house creative designer Nathaniel Young reimagined the CP-81’s standard presentation for both player and packaging. The white Dais edition of the cassette player comes packaged in a white box with black text, plus a set of white Dais-branded headphones and the C23 compilation tape.