This fun deck of creativity-sparking cards – with inspiration from Brian Eno [Tape Op #85] and Peter Schmidt’s Oblique Strategies – was created by Isaac Karns of The Marble Garden studio in Cincinnati, Ohio. (See also: Larry’s End Rant this issue, his review of Laura Veirs' cards, and our front cover image depicting nine images from this deck.) There are 60 cards total, evenly divided into circles, squares, and triangles – each of which contains one third of a sentence. Together, three cards will form a sentence that can guide you in different directions with creative efforts. In general, the triangles seem to represent prompts like sustained waves, voices, or triplets, while the circles and squares represent adjectives that can modify or describe that prompt. Each basic shape also has a “Glyph Family” that can represent different prompts, and different colors are different types of adjectives within a family. For instance, the two sentences from the front cover that you cannot see are, “Watery Triplets Reflected” and “Closed Fuzz As Quiet As Possible.” Try only using a certain family of cards or try removing one or two families. Take two cards instead of three, or only take one. There are no wrong answers here; it's like making music! The paper, printing, and design of these cards is very nicely done, and these should make a nice addition to any studio, music room, or as a gift to your favorite music maker.

Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

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