Gradient Plaza – PLAZA

Recommendation: ☹

PLAZA by Gradient Plaza come out on 18 October 2016, making it the first album released through Oklahoma label Basement Tapes. This album contains twelve tracks of downtempo vaporhop music. Songs flow into each other, making the whole piece more of a twenty-four minute suite rather than twelve individual tracks. The album alternates between quiet ambient pieces and vaporhop parts that occasionally makes use of the frenetic snare-hits that characterizes trap music. The album is quite simple; the beats are generally based on a single phrase that is repeated throughout the track, similar to classic-style vaporwave production. Each track is pretty short, too.

The album does not have many sticking moments, owing to the nigh-lowercase hints of melody and simplistic beats. PLAZA is better seen as an historical release in context of the founding of Basement Tapes and their specialization in vaporhop albums than it is a fully engaging listening experience (in addition to being a pretty early release in Gradient Plaza’s career). However, there are a couple moments that show hints of glimmer below the surface: “Seafoam” and “Daydream” just might be worth grabbing with their great production via the ever-so-slight reverb.



1. NA – (1:36)
2. Rainforest – (2:27)
3. Atmosphere – (1:21)
4. Ginseng – (1:39)
5. 858585 – (1:28)
6. メガドライブ – (2:51)1
7. 0xc000000e Boot Error – (2:13)
8. WIN200.BIN – (1:00)
9. Seafoam – (2:51)
10. Memory Error – (2:53)
11. Intermission – (0:41)
12. Daydream – (3:05)

1Japanese translation: “


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *