DAT was introduced in 1987, I doubt a 16 year old kid from Cornwall got one that year.
I used to misunderstand the tidbit about SAW 85-92 by assuming it was recorded on compact cassette (which is analog), but once I read it was DAT makes more sense. DAT is still digital information, so as long as the tape is intact and readable it's as consistent with each playback, hence the ability for it to be remastered and repressed easily. That said, it's very likely many parts and tracks of SAW 85-92 were recorded on analog tape of different forms.
No, you were right the first time. :)
Everything was originally mastered on standard tape on a hi-fi cassette deck. I've only had a DAT for just over a year... With the first track, the tape had chewed in about seven places... It's a retrospective look, and the tape munching was all part of the stuff I was doing, so I've left it in.
That was back in 1993. He'd lend his tapes out to his friends to listen to in their cars. Then he got them back and recorded them to DAT, and from there to vinyl and CDs. It's great music, not at all worth worrying about the quality of the equipment you're playing it back on, as long as you can still hear those subbass lines reasonably well... :)
Note that Surfing on Sine Waves also predates him getting a DAT player by quite some way, being recorded between 1986 and 1989, again to cassette tape. That's the one with the orange juice spillage.
I can only imagine how boring it must have been going through all those old cassette tapes digitising old tracks when you could be making new tracks instead... With that kind of setup, I can see why he preferred making music to actually compiling it into releasable albums.
Damn! I stand corrected. This is a very informative thread, I love when these get going in this subforum.