Its an ongoing trend in electronic music for micro-genres and sub-sub-genres to be given names and discussed to the point where everyone knows how ridiculous it is. #Seapunk is the penultimate example of this in my mind… more a meme than a genre a pure result of the internet and quite obviously a joke in its creation and execution, but something that many people forget that doesn’t mean the music isn’t sometimes amazing and worth paying attention to. If you want to argue about what is and isn’t #seapunk read this then go away. [pictures by artist Christian Riese Lassen]
For those unaware it is an internet based concept, lifestyle, fashion, design and hence musical style based around retro-futuristic acquatic utopia’s, think gifs of digital 3D waves made in the 90’s viewed on netscape .. with dolphins … and beach parties and twitter. Lots of people say “But Aquatic music has always been around… what about Drexciya… what about Handel??” the point isn’t “hey look what we are doing is fresh and new” it is literally… “hey look we’re on the internet lets have some fun by using 90’s oceanic themes in our art and music instead of conforming to some other strict genre guidelines”.. and it is in that that seapunk is interesting. A “post-genre” genre that doesn’t have clear and concise guidelines beyond the fact that it embraces 90’s rave or it has a aquatic/oceanic/positive beach vibe or simply someone chooses to call it seapunk.
My first experience with this music was actually before the term was coined by LiL Internet in the infamous tweet in June of 2011 when I went to Blip Festival in May in New York City.. Chip Music artist and Unicorn Kid Collaborator Talk to Animals played a section of the set that was amazingly euphoric 90’s rave with some tropical beach vibes..
a few months later as this music was already being made within these circles and Unicorn Kid released the Tidal Rave EP.. Which you can download all 3 tracks for free from his soundcloud.
In my mind this release set the template sound, design and fashion that is Seapunk.. however interestingly nobody (that I know of) just copied the formula of Unicorn Kids sound. Instead the fashion and design elements were picked up by Ultrademon (aka Fire for Effect) and Zombelle and Coral Records was started with #Seapunk vol. 1 and basically got blogged a whole lot. The result of this is a bunch of people listening to a compilation of music that has no real linking feature beyond a musical/sonic representation of a design/fashion and we end up with a whole bunch of music and band wagon jumpers; some great, some interesting, some fairly dull..
Here are my picks .. fight me … tell me seapunk doesn’t exist … tell me seapunk is dead and slimepunk is the future… I just like the music..