Tascam Portastudio meets Teenage Engineering OP-1 in retro-hipster cassette loop heaven

If you still have an old 4-track cassette recorder up in your loft, this new video from Oora might just inspire you to get it down and set it up.

In it, he shows you how he creates experimental loops using his Teenage Engineering OP-1 and classic Tascam Portastudio 414 - a gear combination that should have sonic hipsters salivating.

The process involves opening up a cassette and physically cutting a tape loop that runs for 10 seconds. Oora then fires up the OP-1 and records a loop on track 1; he’s not working to any kind of click so the results can be pretty random.

This loop then serves as a reference for three other loops. Once these are recorded they can be mixed using the Portastudio’s faders, with the whole lot being pitched down to add ambient flavour.

This is further aided by the use of a reverb pedal - in this case the Death By Audio Rooms Stereo Reverb - which delivers the requisite space and ambience.

It’s all rather lovely, and if you want to have a go yourself, there’s a handy step-by-step section towards the end. Ooora has also posted a cassette performance during which he adds a further live layer with the OP-1.

Ben Rogerson

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it. 

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