When I first started going to shows, punk rock seemed like a secret club that I had been let in on....that may seem elitist, but I was a kid who had no knowledge of independent music other than Blink 182's Dude Ranch. I had never been to a concert, and my love of music was solely based around listening to CD's on my walkmen and playing air guitar when no one was looking. Hall shows were a complete culture shock to me...it was gritty and felt dangerous.
Calgary's Corta Vita were a band that definitely added to the mystique of danger I had built up around the punk scene. I had heard rumors of their live show being absolutely destructive and vicious, where no one's personal space was safe and you were likely to get a mic in the face or a headstock in the gut. To be honest, I don't remember the first time I saw Corta Vita or whether I was physically abused at the hands of the band, but I remember really loving what I was hearing. They played a genre of music that at the time I had never heard. It was loud, abrasive and weird, and I would later start to associate it with bands like City of Caterpillar, Shotmaker and Drive Like Jehu. In reality, Corta Vita was probably my first brush with emo music, so I guess I'll be forever indebted to them.
Anyways, I came across this tape rip from a great blog, The Calgary Cassette Preservation Society, who have taken it up on themselves to try and document Calgary's independent music scene's love affair with the cassette tape. (Sorry to the people who run the blog for reposting this link. If you're interested in Calgary punk rock and rock n' roll, check the blog out, it's pretty amazing the amount of stuff on there)