A copy of Taylor Swift’s Speak Now (Taylor’s Version) has been cursed with an erroneous pressing of an obscure electronica compilation led by Cabaret Voltaire’s “Soul Vine (70 Billion People),” The Guardian reports, citing bewildered Swiftie Rachel Hunter. It is unclear whether more mispresses are in circulation, according to Above Board, the label that released the compilation, Happy Land: A Compendium of Alternative Electronic Music From the British Isles 1992-1996, Vol. 1. Hunter’s TikTok followers have listened along to snippets of the fringe oddities, with reactions ranging from horror to intrigue.
When Hunter played her vinyl, the first song she heard was “True Romance,” a darkly pastoral techno track by Thunderhead the Word by Eden. “I thought maybe the vinyl had some sort of special message,” Hunter told The Guardian’s Daniel Dylan Wray. “Because Taylor does that sort of thing. This voice was saying strange things about flesh and anxiety. I was like: This is weird. I thought maybe the other side would be less strange but I flipped it over [to Cabaret Voltaire] and, no, it only got weirder.”
“I was alone and it was late and my vinyl was playing creepy messages,” Hunter also told BBC News.
Ed Cartwright, who curates Above Board with Leon Oakey, told The Guardian, “You couldn’t really have chosen a more perfect compilation of music to mysteriously appear on that record…. It’s possibly the most subversive thing we’ve ever done.”
And Above Board’s founder, Dan Hill, said to Resident Advisor, “Swift fans on TikTok are calling it ‘the cursed version.’ It’s a massive collision of worlds as the music featured is from such different musical spheres. Mistakes happen all the time, we’ve certainly made a few, but I hope the fans enjoy their surprise mix of electronic music. I’m sure it’s going to be a Discogs rare pressing classic in years to come.”
Universal Music Group, home of Swift’s label, Republic Records, said in a statement, “We are aware that there are an extremely limited number of incorrectly pressed vinyl copies in circulation and have addressed the issue.”
Despite initially finding it “so creepy,” Hunter has come around to the Cabaret Voltaire track. “When the beat kicks in I was like: this is a vibe,” she told The Guardian.