In the Fall of 2008, the fifth and final Iamaphoney suitcase was left in Berlin, Germany and reportedly found at the Brandenburg Gate by YouTube user sdofik. Your friend and mine, MikeyNL1038 chronicled this momentous event in his famous video paul is dead - nothing is real 333, which features the obscene gesture heard around the world.
At the time, the famous finger was credited to blog reader Yenz, who I'm told is back on solid food and should be released within the next few months. People were a bit unkind to poor Yenz, who was never proven to be the individual in the famous video with the famous middle finger.
MikeyNL1038 continued to put pressure on Mr. sdofik, and eventually, I think, came in possession of what some consider to be the most interesting items from the suitcase. "The Twin Peppers" (two Parlophone vinyl copies of The Beatles "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" album) were strategically attached to a rumor that if you play them in sync, hidden messages would appear.
Mike made another video called paul is dead - nothing is real 334 suitcase contents showing the items found in the suitcase.
More recently, Mike generously shared a link (no longer active) to what he claimed were digitized versions of the two vinyl albums at rapidshare. He instructed listeners to open the two files in Audacity and play them at a speed of 0.93%. Do you have any idea of what happens to 40 year-old sleeveless vinyl records that are left in a suitcase on the ground in Germany? Am I supposed to try to play them in sync? They both skip a lot, so one would have to do quite a bit of editing to keep them in sync. Playing them at 93% speed results in a nearly imperceptible difference, even to a trained ear.
I did do some experiments with them, but the results were not too inspiring.
I was hoping that Rotten Apple 59 was giving us a clue. Released about one year before the German suitcase was dropped, the video features the sound of scratchy vinyl and a loop from the song "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band." My first slightly out of sync attempts at playing the Twin Peppers simultaneously reminded me of the Iamaphoney mashup.
But a close listen to the soundtrack, which can also be found in Mike's Iamaphoney Bootleg 2 under the title iamaphoney - Paperbags For Pepper shows that the Iamaphoney recording bears no resemblance to the scratchy records I downloaded from rapidshare.
The idea of syncing up two vinyl records that skip is folly. And please don't suggest that the skips may have meaning. Variables such as the quality of the turntable cartridges, weight of the tone arm, condition of the stylus and environmental elements would not allow for planned skips in vinyl records. It is possible to sync them to some degree by putting breaks in the skips to equal the amount of time lost, but nothing emerged from that experiment.
There is one thing I can tell you about those two records. These are not alternate mixes of the Sgt. Pepper tracks. The sound on these records is what you would get if you played them on a monaural record player with a stereo needle. You basically have a mono mix of one channel with some bleed through. So, Paul's part at the beginning and end of the title track is buried, as are the backing vocals on "When I'm 64," the lead vocals of "Being For the Benefit of Mr. Kite," the laughter at the end of "Within You Without You," the chorus vocals on "Good Morning Good Morning" and the lead vocal of the first verse and bridge of "A Day In The Life." There is nothing on these records that can't be heard on the standard issue of the album. The only highlight would be that it is easier to hear the vocal at the end of "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise)," which some interpret as "Paul is dead, really dead."
So basically we have a phony alternative mix (actually two identical ones) of the Sgt. Pepper's album that can be easily achieved by using improper equipment. That was a rather curious choice by whoever it was that ripped them and uploaded them to rapidshare.
It is a surprise that neither record has the inner groove recording that existed on the first British release of the album. There is an extra bit of sound at the end of Side Two of Album Two, but it sounds like an accidental needle drop. Attempts to slow down this artifact did not result an any meaningful discovery.
I have inquired to MikeyNL1038 for some clarification, and will update this post when I receive any information.
There are some new videos inspired by the Rotten Apple Series. TheMagickian gave us A Craftsman in the Works.
YouTube user VomitonRBX303 has been uploading Rotten Apple videos with Spanish sub-titles. I have posted a permanent link on this blog under Essential Links. Sunssol also has a new backwards backwards video, if you know what I mean. And I'll be uploading a new video shortly.
It will be interesting to see if Iamaphoney says hello to us in April. April has always been an interesting month in the Iamaphoney saga.