In this sense, nostalgia is just another form of mediation—another technique of circulating images and melodies and stories through the portals of time. That’s part of the paradox of the Beatles: while making fantastically novel and innovative music, they were also the most mediated thing you could imagine, saturated inside and out with signs and frames and codes.
Mediation is always in part a technical operation. With George “Mr. Jones” Martin on the decks, the Beatles became arguably the first band to transform the multi-track studio into a virtual reality, a space of controlled hallucination equal parts LSD and magnetic tape, exploiting all the loops, dubs, edits, and backwards masking that good old Nazi format affords.
Until this article, I was unaware of the studio’s connection to Nazis. From my limited secondary research this morning, magnetic tape appears to have been used in radio (propaganda) broadcasts. New mediums always have the potential to change the world.
Related: I’m still suprised we haven’t had a government official “deep fake” incident yet.
Then again, maybe we have.