Our little friend here marked EMI's entry into the unrecorded (blank) cassette market sometime in the late 60s/early 70s - and here is what an early Soundhog cassette case and tape looked like.
Originally, these cassettes came in opaque plastic snap-cases like this one (above), and not the more familiar 'Norelco' cases using clear plastic for the front, spine and part of the back (for the back flip). Rather than folding out and open like a Norelco case, these ones just pulled apart enough to be able to slide the cassette in and out - they couldn't be folded back. Instead of an inlay, a label stuck to the back of the box was provided for noting the contents.
You may think the Soundhog was one not keen to blow his own trumpet - but you'd be wrong! This advert, from a 1971 edition of Melody Maker, was kindly sent to us by musician Ben Hayes, who also pays tribute in namesake for his pseudonym. See how at his website here.
Many thanks Ben!
A slightly more dour example, more likely marketed at the serious audio enthusiast rather than the typical domestic customer, this EMITAPE blank cassette came bedecked in the metallic gold colour prefered by EMI in the early 70s.
Whether the colour choice similarity to contemporary pre-recorded cassettes was coincidental, or by design, we're not sure.
Recording studios, for many years, used cassettes to produce advance/internal copies of new recordings being mastered in the studios, for distribution to reviewers, DJs, those involved in the production, or to record company executives.
These took the place of the thereto-common 'acetate' discs cut for the same purposes before cassette technology became cheap and accessible.
Each studio would have their own generic inlay designs onto which track details would typically be handwritten or typed. Here is an Abbey Road example from the 1970s.
Note the use of the iconic Beatles sleeve cover photograph as the interior fill for the lettering, albeit without the Fabs in shot.
The cassettes themselves were standard domestic blanks of any description (this one was a Maxell) with no labels on them whatsoever.