35 years ago, a Christian band hid a computer program on a vinyl record

Back in the days when everyone was into CDs and vinyl, acts sometimes hid Easter eggs within the packaging, the artwork, or on the album itself. The most common was the hidden/unlisted track, but occasionally someone would go above and beyond.

For example, Information Society, an alt rock-ish band from the late 80s put a fax message on their 1992 album, Peace and Love Inc. There was a track listed as “300bps N, 8, 1 (Terminal Mode or Ascii Download).” Play it on a CD machine and it as just noise. Play it through a phone to a fax machine and you ended up with a secret message. It didn’t make much sense, but still…

You can read the whole thing here.

But something even earlier has been uncovered. A band called Prodigal left a Commodore C-64 program to be discovered on a vinyl record released in 1984. To run the program, you have to record the audio onto a cassette and then load it into an old Commodore.

(Via Polygon.com)

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

2 thoughts on “35 years ago, a Christian band hid a computer program on a vinyl record

  • October 21, 2019 at 11:50 pm

    The Information Society track is not fax-format data; it is just straight ASCII. 🙂

    • October 22, 2019 at 7:40 am

      True. But the way we decoded it was playing down a phone line to a fax machine. Good clarification, though.


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