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Black Tape For A Blue Girl

Black Tape for a Blue Girl's ethereal, mournful sound virtually defined the darkwave aesthetic of their label, Projekt Records, a company owned and operated by the group's founder, composer and keyboardist Sam Rosenthal. Formed in 1983, Projekt was originally envisioned as an outlet for Rosenthal's solo electronic music; upon relocating to California three years later, his music adopted a warmer, deeply personal sound heralded by the formation of Black Tape for a Blue Girl, which debuted in 1986 with The Rope. Where subsequent efforts including 1987's Mesmerized by the Sirens and its 1989 follow-up, Ashes in the Brittle Air, drew heavily on ambient soundscapes, the group -- a revolving ensemble of performers that in addition to Rosenthal also at times included vocalists Oscar Herrera and Lucian Casselman, violinist Vicki Richards, clarinetist Richard Watson, and cellist Mera Roberts -- expanded into increasingly dense electronic textures over the course of records like 1991's A Chaos of Desire and 1993's This Lush Garden Within.

After a three-year hiatus, during which Rosenthal moved from Los Angeles to Chicago, Black Tape for a Blue Girl resurfaced in 1996 with the EP The First Pain to Linger, a disc packaged with a novel authored by Rosenthal. The full-length epic Remnants of a Deeper Purity appeared that same year. Sporting richer string arrangements than previous Black Tape recordings, the album eventually became their most popular release, and was reissued several times over the subsequent decades. The band played its first ever concert after the album's release. As One Aflame Laid Bare by Desire followed in 1999. Julianna Towns sang on several songs, but she was let go from the band before the album was released, and Elysabeth Grant (who initially joined the band as a violist) became Black Tape's singer. Rosenthal and his wife at the time, flutist Lisa Feuer, moved to New York City at the end of the year and began working on the next Black Tape album, Scavenger Bride, which included vocals by Grant, Bret Helm, and Athan Maroulis (Spahn Ranch, Tubalcain, Executive Slacks). The album was released by Projekt in 2002.

Black Tape shifted from their usual ethereal sound to more of a dark cabaret style with their next release, 2004's Halo Star. They toured the United States after the album's release, with Grant and Helm joined by additional vocalist/guitarist Nicki Jaine. Rosenthal and Jaine started a duo called Revue Noir, which issued an EP and toured throughout 2005. Black Tape were quiet for several years, only performing a handful of shows in 2007. They returned in 2009 with 10 Neurotics, featuring Maroulis and Laurie Reade as the lead singers, with additional vocals by Jaine and Grant. The album's artwork and subject matter were significantly more erotic than their previous material.

In 2010, guitarist/vocalist Valerie Gentile of the Crüxshadows replaced Jaine, who retired from music. She was replaced by Pinky Weltzman a year later. Following a few concerts in 2011, the group went on hiatus while Rosenthal wrote an erotic novel and kept busy running Projekt. He moved to Portland, Oregon in 2013, and a Black Tape remix album (Tenderotics) was released that year. He also started a successful crowdsourcing campaign to issue Remnants of a Deeper Purity on vinyl for the first time. He digitally issued several archival releases and preview EPs while working on the next Black Tape album. Titled These Fleeting Moments, it was released in August of 2016 by Metropolis, with a deluxe crowdfunded edition appearing on Projekt. The album marked the return of earlier vocalist Herrera, as well as the group's ethereal sound from that era. ~ Jason Ankeny & Paul Simpson
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: 10 Neurotics

1. Sailor Boy

2. Inchworm

3. Tell Me You've Taken Another

4. The Perfect Pervert

5. Marmalade Cat

6. Love Song

7. Rotten Zurich Cafe

8. Militarhymne

9. In Dystopia

10. The Pleasure In The Pain

11. I Strike You Down

12. Caught By A Stranger

13. Curious, Yet Ashamed

14. Love Of The Father

x

Track List: Halo Star

1. Glow

2. Tarnished

3. The Gravediggers

4. Your Love Is Sweeter Than Wine

5. Indefinable, Yet

6. Knock Three Times

7. Scarecrow

8. Damn Swan!

9. Already Forgotten

10. The Fourth Footstep

11. Dagger

12. Halo Star

x

Track List: The Scavenger Bride

1. The Scavenger Bride

2. Kinski

3. All My Lovers

4. Shadow Of A Doubt

5. The Doorkeeper

6. Floats In The Updraft

7. A Livery Of Bachelors

8. Das Liselottenbett

9. The Lie Which Refuses To Die

10. The Scavenger's Daughter

11. Like A Dog-Letter To Brod

12. The Whipper

13. Bastille Day, 1961

x

Track List: As One Aflame Laid Bare By Desire

1. As One Aflame Laid Bare By Desire

2. Given

3. Entr`acte (The Garden Awaits Us)

4. Tell Me You've Taken Another

5. Entr`acte (The Carnival Barker)

6. Dream

7. The Apotheosis

8. Russia

9. Your One Wish

10. Dulcinea

11. The Green Box

12. Denouement / Denouncement

13. The Passage

x

Track List: Mesmerized By The Sirens

1. Jamais Pars

2. A Teardrop Left Behind

3. Dark Skinned And Inviting

4. Lie Broken, Bleeding

5. Hairline Sunlight

6. With A Million Tears

7. The Sawdust Scatter

8. Beneath The Planks

9. Scream, My Shallow

10. Seireenien Lumoama

x

Track List: This Lush Garden Within (Deluxe Edition)

Disc 1

7. The Turbulence And The Torment

Disc 2

1. Forbidden

2. The Glass Is Shattered

3. Pandora's Dream ('92 W/Lucian)

4. Overwhelmed, Beneath Me ('93 W/Lucian & Lyrics)

5. I No Longer Remember The Feelings

6. A Good Omen

7. Seven

x

Track List: Remnants Of A Deeper Purity

Disc 1

1. Redefine Pure Faith

2. Fin De Siecle

3. With My Sorrows

4. For You Will Burn Your Wings Upon The Sun

5. Wings Tattered, Fallen

6. Fitful

7. Remnants Of A Deeper Purity

8. Again, To Drift

9. I Have No More Answers

Disc 2
x

Track List: Remnants Of A Deeper Purity (2014 Remastered Deluxe Edition)

1. Redefine Pure Faith

2. Fin De Siécle

3. With My Sorrows

4. For You Will Burn Your Wings Upon The Sun

5. Wings Tattered, Fallen

6. Fitful

7. Remnants Of A Deeper Purity

8. Again, To Drift (For Veronika)

9. I Have No More Answers

x

Track List: The First Pain To Linger

1. Forbidden

2. The Glass Is Shattered

3. Pandora's Dream ('92 W/Lucian)

4. Overwhelmed, Beneath Me ('93 W/Lucian & Lyrics)

5. I No Longer Remember The Feelings

6. A Good Omen

7. Seven

x

Track List: Ashes In The Brittle Air

1. Ashes In The Brittle Air

2. Across A Thousand Blades ('89)

3. The Touch And The Darkness

4. Through Sky Blue Rooms

5. The Scar Of A Poet

6. You Tangle Within Me

7. From The Tightrope

8. Am I So Deceived

9. Is It Love That Dare Not Be?

10. I Ran To You

11. I Wish You Could Smile

x

Track List: Forbidden Colours (Single)

1. Forbidden Colours

2. Love Of The Father

x

Track List: The Best Of (Deluxe Edition)

Disc 1

1. Remnants Of A Deeper Purity (2004)

2. Across A Thousand Blades (2007)

3. All My Lovers

4. Griffith Park

5. Given (1. The Waterfall 2. The Illuminating Gas)

6. Memory, Uncaring Friend

7. For You Will Burn Your Wings Upon The Sun (Part 1)

8. Dagger (Stripped Mix)

9. Overwhelmed, Beneath Me (2000)

10. Could I Stay The Honest One? (1998)

11. The Lie Which Refuses To Die

12. Knock Three Times (Skinny Kinda Mix)

13. I Have No More Answers (2008)

Disc 2

1. The Scar Of A Poet

2. Across A Thousand Blades

3. Tear Love From My Mind

4. A Teardrop Left Behind

5. The Turbulence And The Torment

6. The Lingering Flicker

7. Seven Days Till Sunrise

8. The Hypocrite Is Me

9. We Watch Our Sad-Eyed Angel Fall

10. Beneath The Planks

11. Hide In Yourself

12. How Can You Forget Love?

13. Ashes In The Brittle Air

14. Seireenien Lumoama

x

Track List: The Pleasures Everlasting

1. Fortune Presents Gifts Not According To The Book

2. Shadow Of A Doubt (Sonic Youth Cover)

3. Star Power (Sonic Youth Cover)

4. Secret Girls (Sonic Youth Cover)

x

Track List: These Fleeting Moments

1. The Vastness Of Life

2. Limitless

3. One Promised Love

4. Bike Shop/Absolute Zero

5. Affinity

6. Please Don't Go

7. Six Thirteen

8. Zug Köln

9. Meditation On The Skeleton

10. Desert Rat-Kangaroo

11. She's Gone

12. She Ran So Far Away That She Can No Longer Be Found

13. You're Inside Me

Comments

Report as inappropriate
kryan957
This Lush Garden Within is their darkest and most put together album...
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One day soon I will hear Remnants of A Deeper Purity in its entirety. It deserves that.
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andrewjboss6
Dafuq did I just get done listening to?!
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peter8795
Follow the breadth
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Haunting, but oh so Angelic at the same time, Meditation at it's finest.
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Blown away!
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sbholl84
Been a fan of Black Tape since the early 90s. I wish Pandora would get more of their records though, especially Remnants. That album is a masterpiece.
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I love their dark beautiful sound!
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Majick
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marvelously haunting....
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stevetanya7
This group is great They put in this mellow mode.
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I would also recommend This Mortal Coil to anyone who likes this band, in particular the album Filigree and Shadow.
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I'm new to this sound, but like what I'm hearing - true 'bout this pandora experience is addictive - and it intrigues me that this group put out an album called 'before the buildings fell' in early 2000. because, a year later, buildings fell, and for awhile , it felt like time was measured as, before, and after, the buildings fell. but you all know that..
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thegrunionon e
wow! its good for this time of year. 4feet of snow on the ground...xma s in 2 days...it fits.
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thegrunionon e
listening to the apotheosis right now...feel like i need a nap.but in a good way. seriously. this pandora thing can be addictive.
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I love the sad songs; they do this very, very well.
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I AGREE
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One of my long-time favorites; I just wish Pandora also featured their earlier albums.

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