(Garage tune….)

(Short sequence of musical beeps)

(Pacey baseline)

(Two-step drum beat)


(Cassette Tape Radio)

(Cassette Tape Radio)

(Cassette Tape Radio)

(Jingle fades)

Talia: Hey, welcome to Cassette Tape Radio episode 3. How are you? I hope you’re ok I hope your loved ones, your friends, your family, everyone is ok. These are very very very anxious times so I hope you’re doing well. Because… I’ve been up and down.

Just like everyone else I’ve had some pretty rough moments these past couple of days, couple of weeks. Um there’s been tears, there’s been anxious dreams, horrible nightmares. There’s been really funny uplifting moments too. So last night Jamie Payne and I – say hi Jamie

Jamie (in the background): Hello

Talia: Hi. Jamie and I ran a zoom pub-quiz-game-show-thing for some of our mates, which was really really silly and just a relief to check in with people and remember who we are a little bit.

And also we asked everyone who came to virtual pub quiz to donate the cost of a round to their local food bank. So I think we probably raised, I dunno 100, 200, 300 quid? That was a nice little moment of light in these incredibly overwhelming times.

I’m not gonna speak about this for very long just so that you know because, um I can’t do too much of the ‘Corona Content’ stuff right now, coz that’s also overwhelming. But I just thought it was important just to kind of lay it all out there, check in.

Um, all the previous episodes that we’ve recorded – we made them and recorded them way before all this stuff had happened. So this is the first time that we’re kind of in the middle of it – or at the beginning of it, who knows?

Um, yeah what’s the date today? It’s the 27th of March so London’s been in lockdown that isn’t called a lockdown but is a lockdown, since Monday. But actually I’ve been doing it, we’ve been doing it since like the 14th or March so we’ve gone a bit stir crazy.

But we’re here, and that’s what’s important. Um anyway, Jamie shall we get on with the show? He’s just done a thumbs up, he’s not even bothering to do woops and hollers in the corner anymore – its been a long day.

Ok so today’s show is called ‘Desperate Island Disks’ and I’m really quite happy with that title. It’s a story, basically. Its about – I dunno – 7/8 minutes long. It’s written in second person, ooo risky, second person. Sometimes that works, sometimes it fails. But you know Cassette Tape Radio is an open sketchbook, so I mean really who cares if it’s good or not.

It’s about sex, this story. S E X for those who like spelling and um, just coz it’s an intimate story doesn’t mean its autobiographical so don’t get too excited. It doesn’t mean that its not autobiographical or not not autobiographical so just…calm down is what I’m saying.

Um mum, dad, I know you’re bored in this lockdown but I beg you don’t listen to this one because oh my days it gets a bit rowdy and we’re socially distancing from each other but still we’re talking a lot at the moment and… I can’t have that in my vibe you know.

So mum, dad take your headphones off… now. Ok cool – click. There we go.

For the rest of you I suppose I should do a content warning that’s always good to do. The story is about sex, specifically about the playlist you make for sex times. Umhm, I’m looking at all of you out there.

So its not too graphic but obviously it chats about sex. Mostly it’s funny and silly and awkward. There are some slightly dark moments in there so if you find that a little bit too much or overwhelming listen to episode 2 or 1, which aren’t about sex whatsoever.

It’s really hard to know what’s triggering for different people; sometimes the most innocuous thing can be a really big trigger for someone but I still think its important to lay it all out there.

Big shout out to Jamie Payne as usual for the music on this one. Um, it’s a really funny soundtrack, I think. He’s smiling at me – it was meant to be funny, I think?

Jamie (in the background): it’s good as well

Talia: Its really good obviously but the best thing about the song is that its called ‘Background del Mar’, which I think is a stroke of genius. It’s almost as good as ‘Desperate Island Disks’

Jamie (inaudible the background)

Talia: Jamie is saying that he came up with ‘Background del Mar’ – yeah obviously coz you made the music so you came up with the title.

Anyway. Enough from me, here is ‘Desperate Island Disks’


(sound of waves gently crashing on a shore)

(low and slow ambient synths – loops throughout)

Your bed is the smallest. ASDA sheets and a strip of fabric you bought on your gap year. Each morning you kitten your toes into the special offer rug, preparing them for the icy sprint to the shower.

By the window there is a desktop computer with a floppy disk drive. Papier-mâché speakers. Here, you write coursework about Foucault and the Medical Gaze and essays discussing the Colonial Industrial Complex of International Aid Work.

You were given the computer for being dyslexic – well done you. With the diagnosis came the double-edged realisation that you are not stupid but you are slow, so slow they can define it clinically.

The dyslexic computer is where you burn CDs. Creating playlists imaginatively titled ‘Drum n Bass etc.’, or ‘Hip Hop 3’. But the playlists you funnel the most effort into are the sex CDs.

(sound of waves drop out)

You may have come here for an education, but far more important is the clocking up of ‘life experience’ and you are diligently shagging your way to gain what the careers advisor called social skills. Its much cheaper that doing an internship.

Besides you are a free woman. You are a sex adventurer, a scientist even.

(high-pitched cheesy female vocal)

Your poundshop bedroom is a laboratory. Here you willingly share your body with other test subjects in order to find ultimate sex; the type of sex you can cheers to in the pub afterwards; the type of sex that deserves a running high five along a sports corridor; the type of sex you are told you are meant to be having.

(synth violin riff)                          

(slow rumbling baseline)

The playlists to these sexual escapades are in a very specific order: Stage one – background mix in the living room:

This playlist must show every potential sexmate how interesting you are: Ani Di Franco, Fingerthing, Aphex Twin etc.

(synth violin riff)                          

With this playlist you judge reactions to assess if such-and-such boy is cool enough to bring upstairs, though you tend to bring them upstairs anyway, even if they do not pass this preliminary test.

(rumbling baseline intensifies)

In a few months time one of these such-and-such sexmates will become ‘boyfriend’. As he grows more comfortable he will insult this sub-section of your music taste for being too edgy and intellectual; “too many women angry at the world on this CD” he will say.

(cheesy bongos begin)

He will then ‘borrow’ this playlist to show other girls how feminist and interesting he is. Eventually he will adopt it as one of the tools he uses to welcome them into his bed with.

(synth violin riff)                          

Stage 2 involves music that can only be described as the soundtrack to a raw-juice-yoga-shop-café in Camden Market circa 2001. This playlist is populated with stolen 4×4 rhythms, sparse bass and an un-credited female vocalist.

This soundtrack transforms a student bedroom into sophisticated boudoir. Where smooth bodies pulsate behind a soft focus lens. Where the sex is as smoky and intense as the incense burning a hole on the windowsill.

(baseline drops out)

(cheesy bongos continue)

These are scenes that play out like the romcoms you pretend you don’t watch with deep sighs and far too much eye contact.

Sometimes you are so good at faking orgasm that you almost convince yourself. Every film you have watched or magazine you’ve read has taught you that an orgasm is a thing that someone else gives you.

(cheesy bongos drop out)

(synth violin riff)                          

All you need to do is get the external factors right – music, lighting, waxing. Then someone will do some thrusting on you and boom, there it is.

(subtle drumbeat)

(baseline returns)

Sometimes you steal a wank when they go to wash themselves.

Sometimes the ferocity of your own pleasure shocks you. Who knew your body could be the site of such thunder.

(synth violin riff)                          

Sometimes there is a body you don’t want to let go of. So you cling to each other like pigs on a life raft, squashed in the discomfort of your tiny bed.

(subtle drumbeat drops out)

In your makeshift lab, you skim over the unwanted experiments – like the pill dealer who left his socks and baseball cap on. Or the friend where the morning after regret sunk deep into you both before you had even started but you’d already committed to the mistake by then so you both had to keep going.

And what of the experiences that you record as ‘unfortunate’, ‘embarrassing’, or ‘cringe’ when they should be labeled as ‘unmentionable’? You quickly sweep them behind the filing cabinet. There they will remain for a decade until you will be able to reclassify them.

(music strips back to gentle ambient synths)

Stage 3 is bacon breakfast. If one of them is lucky enough to stay over, (or are you the lucky one?) then you will casually chuck on some hip-hop while you fry things. Something laid back, old school. Yeah, bacon and hip-hop. You’re basically a lad.

After they’ve left and you’ve swallowed your aspirin you recuperate in the pub. At a table full of cider and bravado you and the other girls drink the men under the table. You and the other girls carry signs above your heads that read, ‘We are women and we know what we want’,

(music fades out)

and if you affirm it loud enough we will eventually believe it.


There we have it – ‘Desperate Island Disks’.

This is the third episode, we’ve had two previously, the one before was called ‘ElectroKrud’, if you haven’t listened to that its pretty out there. And the one before that is called ‘Mixtape for the School Trip’.

We’ve got more episodes coming, hopefully every week for a while. We are finding it quite hard to focus and concentrate. Anything more than 15 minutes of concentration at the moment is, like an overwhelming feat of strength. So we’ll see how it works.

If you like the episode just share it because if I know that people are listening and kind of into it then it will probably spur us on to carry on making stuff. So like, subscribe, send it in your multiple WhatsApp groups…

Omigod can we talk for a minute about the WhatsApp groups that are happening at the moment because oh my god… hold tight anyone out there who is having to pretend to parents, friends and family members that the memes they are seeing in the WhatsApp group chats are new to them because there’s some old memes that baby boomers are just discovering.

And as much as I love them and as much as we need to protect them right now at all costs – omigod if I see the same memes in the chats over and over again, I’m gonna cry.

Jamie (in the background): Reign it in boomer, reign it in.

Talia: bit harsh Jamie, but whatever.

Er, don’t go outside unless you have to

(Sign off jingle fades in)

donate to your foodbanks, love you bye.

(Sign off jingle fades out)

– end –