Subaeris – Blue Tokyo EP
This five-track release is by Subaeris,1 a multi-faceted vaporwave/dreampunk project that is perhaps best known in the vaporwave community for releasing a series of futurist cyberpunk albums since 2012 that somewhat contrasted with the largely nostalgia-driven focus of the early vaporwave movement on eighties aesthetics and the early Internet Age. Albums such as Shinjuku Underground – Meditation Chamber System Overload on Asura Revolver and Transcendent God on Nirvana Port focused on long ambient pieces of music with occasional short tracks of breakbeat electronica and garage music. Blue Tokyo EP is part of a series of conceptual works about the city of Tokyo, which includes ｎｅｗ ｔｏｋｙｏ ｂｌｕｅ ｍｏｏｄ 東京 on Dream Catalogue and the self-released In Tokyo 2. Blue Tokyo EP was released on DMT Tapes FL as a part of the DMT[REC] imprint, which was a bit of a change from the label’s usual focus in classic-style vaporwave and sample curation.
Blue Tokyo EP foregoes the long ambient pieces of other Subaeris releases for five single-length tracks of garage music with a dreampunk sheen. Tracks such as “Blue Tokyo” utilize trap-esque percussion that largely focuses on treble and hi-hats. “Soul Compression” features some repetitive keyboard lines that dissipate into reverb and have a bit of pitch-/tempo-shifting akin to classic-style vaporwave production. As with many Dream Catalogue projects of around this time (especially from cohorts Sandtimer and チェスマスター), Blue Tokyo EP is nigh-entirely instrumental with the exception of lofty pitch-shifted vocals that slide into the mix as gentle flourishes rather than upstage the instrumentals – as heard on “Soul Compression” and “Install 0002”.
Check this out if you’re into the aforementioned Sandtimer and チェスマスター, especially their post-vaporwave output from 2015 onward. Blue Tokyo EP is a rather simple release that provides mostly what you’d expect from Subaeris around this time. It’s a good addition to any existing cityscape playlist that includes artists such as Remember and w u s o 命.
1. Blue Tokyo – (5:30)
2. Brain Liquid – (4:11)
3. Soul Compression – (5:07)
4. Install 0002 – (2:36)
5. New Mood – (4:00)
1SPOILER ALERT: an alias of HKE.