Blog The Tomorrow That Never Was: Japanese Iconography in Vaporwave


Since the 1980s, Japanese media culture has spread into the United States and Europe with ever-increasing visibility in popular culture. Aided by the internet, what began as a creeping influence became a huge phenomenon in the 21st century, producing some notable appropriations of Japanese culture in recent pop music: Gwen Stefani’s entourage of Harajuku girls, Katy Perry wearing geisha attire at the 2013 AMA’s, and Avril Lavigne bouncing around in a cupcake skirt through candy stores and sushi bars in ‘Hello Kitty.’ Amidst the crude mainstream representations of ‘Cool Japan,’ a subtler form of influence emerged in 2011 from the murky undergrowth of online communities like Bandcamp, Soundcloud, Last.fm and 4chan. Relying heavily on samples from 1980s and 90s lounge, smooth jazz and Muzak, producers such as James Ferraro, Daniel Lopatin, and Vektroid (Ramona Xavier) pioneered a genre created and consumed by a largely anonymous clique of internet citizens with a shared appreciation for hypnagogic music and an ambivalent attitude towards consumer capitalism, globalisation, and manufactured nostalgia. 

Continue reading on: https://www.britznbeatz.co.uk/single-post/2017/10/15/The-Tomorrow-That-Never-Was-Japanese-Iconography-in-Vaporwave


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