仮想夢プラザ – 仮想夢プラザ
仮想夢プラザ1 is the eponymous release of the enormous 仮想夢プラザ project by telepath. It’s also the title of and first song on a massive thirty-one track compilation that comprises the project’s first installment; this article will focus on just the song.2 This album is listed first in the 仮想夢プラザ chronology, implying that it is to be interpreted as the project’s first entry. As with the other 仮想夢プラザ releases, this release is approximately one half hour of evolving hypnagogic drift and ambient vaporwave music that began the crowning achievement of telepath’s career thus far; as of this writing, the third installment is underway.
仮想夢プラザ utilizes the late night lo-fi approach of previous telepath (and t e l e p a t h テレパシー能力者) solo releases: long, instrumental sections built from extant adult contemporary and pop songs. The track is permeated by telepath’s signature swirly production and reverbed percussion, deemed “slushwave” by creator and fans, that lends a heavily surreal3 milieu to its entire run. Whereas later albums would make heavier utilization of synthesizers, 仮想夢プラザ is pretty much entirely built off of its sample. This blunts the personality of 仮想夢プラザ due to how analogous that style is to the main telepath releases.
Like the minimalist ambient of Brian Eno’s Discreet Music, if you’re listening to 仮想夢プラザ for compositional virtuosity, then you’ll want to look elsewhere. The vast majority of the early 仮想夢プラザ releases are made from a sample that steadily loops with no audible cut, similar to how those Eno albums were made from short recorded pieces and layered on top of each other at variable speeds. The appeal of 仮想夢プラザ – and, indeed, the rest of the project – is not in virtuosity, but in how effective these releases are in creating the surreal, soporific, and somewhat sterile4 environment of the Virtual Dream Plaza..
1. 仮想夢プラザ – (31:46)
1Japanese translation: “Virtual dream plaza”
2“Movement” is probably a better word.
3Dare I say “dreamy”?
4I am very proud of this alliteration.