As with most emerging genres, Hyperpop has quickly made its way through internet-based communities around the world and landed in Tokyo. Although the term “Hyperpop” is still debated as a lackluster term coined by a Spotify playlist, there is no denying that the current soundscape is energy-packed and emotionally charged.
Introducing a maximalist sound designed to purposefully echo the sonic rawness of a dense track, layers of anime samples, synthesizers, and auto tuned vocals set the tone. New sounds continue to grow out of this DIY aesthetic that pull from internet culture memes, echoing reddit threads and popular hip-hop culture at the same time.
The origins of hyperpop started on digital platforms like Soundcloud and YouTube where young listeners born into the internet-age pulled inspiration and taste from hip-hop, anime, and a strong sense of popular culture. In the early-years of the 2010s, the genreless creative form was celebrated for its expressive nature without the typical overly masculine or feminine characteristics present in modern music. This neutrality opened up a new way for young artists to explore soundscapes that connected to listeners in a way the internet had yet to see.
Within the online communities, artists such as Sophie, A. G. Cook, and Charli XCX began to catch the attention of mainstream media pushed by the backing of their original followers. Later on, additional artists such as 100 gecs, Rico Nasty, Slayyyter, and Dorian Electra, would go on to be critically acclaimed and bring more attention to the genre.
In Tokyo, a growing number of live shows and events continue to gain traction as the next generation finds their own voice in Japan. Online collaborations and projects provide an organic way to experiment and connect new artists unafraid to take risks, and eager to put on live shows that pack out major venues in the city.
Check out the artists we’ve had the chance to connect with below.
Awasetsu Mona (Instagram)
BBY NABE (Instagram)