Gwen Stefani made Harajuku Girls popular and accepted outside of Japan. But Gwen’s music isn’t exactly the kind that Harajuku girls would actually listen to. These candy-colored underaged girls hanging around Tokyo’s Harajuku and Shibuya districts with their candy-colored headphones and accessories are much more in tuned with Shibuya-Kei, a kind of candy-colored electro-pop music made famous by DJ’s like Fantastic Plastic Machine (FPM, see left).
Just like our two friends below, Shibuya-Kei truly is rainbows on acid, and is gaining grounds outside of Japan. Even its less extreme, hyper flying J-Rock agents – Puffy AmiYumi have landed safely to America, bringing us music with beats averaged over 160 bpm, and girls that made us feel old and detached from reality.
FPM produced a commercial animation on behalf of Luis Vuitton (click below). The short featured a young girl eaten by a cute LV monster, and then fallen into a LV rabbit hole. The graphic movie isn’t as well-known as Takashi Murakami’s (remember the psychedelic LV inspired graphics and plastic sculptures exhibited in New York’s Brooklyn Museum), but, you get the point – LV is everywhere, even living inside a 6 year old Japanese girl’s cellphone.
If you want a true taste of Shibuya-Kei through FPM, we suggest to start with FPM’s Beautiful, (click here for Beautiful Days MV on YouTube) a 2001 classic that sweetens your ears without making them bleed.