Review Summary: It is impossible to predict the time and progress of revolution. It is governed by its own more or less mysterious laws. -Vladimir Lenin
In an immediate sense, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu’s music and image mean nothing and are of no relevance to anyone’s sober, adult reality. She has no social agenda, no cultural agenda and no political agenda. Hers is an essence of musical and physical aesthetic meant to cast aside intention and objective purpose in favour of the listener’s conception of the feeling and the imagination akin to a child’s spiritual connection with their stuffed toys. It is then perhaps, in another sense, that Kyary Pamyu Pamyu’s music could be the aggregate of so much more.
Enter Japan’s latest frivolous sensation: Caroline Charonplop Kyary Pamyu Pamyu – Model, blogger, entrepreneur, recording artist and newest poster girl for all things Harajuku. The late summer release of her debut EP, Moshi Moshi Harajuku
, took over the blogosphere to a tune that began as a flippant, guilty pleasure, proceeded as “in heavy rotation”, finally taking a top spot on many bashful year-end lists of 2011. While many were simply enamoured by Kyary’s colorful videos, notably that for PonPonPon
, garnering many well-earned comparisons and misplaced “American equivalent” comparisons to Perfume
and Lady Gaga
, respectively, many praised her (and producer Yasutaka Nakata of Capsule [JPN]
) for bringing the “Pop” back as the very core of pop music.
With Nakata at the reigns of production once more, Pamyu Pamyu Revolution
has not slowed down the engine of the starlet’s perfectly asinine rendition of a storybook fairy tale devoid of anything but happy endings. Boasting distant cherubic synths, set ablaze onto a comet made purely out of various chimes, a plump bassline and the innocent imagination of the world’s children personified within a vocalist that one would not feel justified labelling as “soprano”. However easy it may be to imagine that this release would be served with the authenticity of a TV dinner, the truly amazing aspect is that there isn’t a hint of false joy presented, rare to find upon a genre that can be so frequently over processed. At the helm of a series of singles, Tsukema Tsukeru
finds the timing for every musical entrance so immaculate you’d have thought the atomic clock finally discovered it could dance. Candy Candy
follows up with a similar approach involving one of the most infectious melodies to ever come out of a music box, walk on its own two feet and show the discoteque what their emotional needs have been lacking.
Wait, emotional needs? I suppose that’s going a little far. After all, not everyone can relate to songs about putting on false eyelashes, the simple pleasure of eating candies out of your pockets or drinking in an expansive mind state until the dawn greets you. Or can they? Perhaps Kyary is surpassing a songwriting barrier previously met by those feigning affectation for shame of appearing too simple to a listener. Perhaps none of this is even meant for you, in a strange, convoluted way. Whatever her aim, Kyary’s choruses are going to stay stuck in your heads the summer (and beyond) over. Pamyu Pamyu Revolution indeed.