Get SF Weekly Newsletters
Pin It

Voice of Tomorrow 

Wednesday, Aug 24 2011
Comments
Next time someone makes the rusty old complaint that the future was supposed to have jetpacks, hit them with this. Silvery-voiced, anime-inspired, dreamed-up-in-a-computer pop stars are the thing now — the thing to which kids groove, academics expound, and all of previous pop music has been building. Like pop singers worldwide, Japan’s vocaloid starlets sound like sugar spun from the guts of a laptop, but in this case there’s a sort of synthetic authenticity: These vocals are a computer, rather than an Auto-Tuned human. Almost as fascinating are the pretend singers’ digital avatars, who star in videos, games, and occasional in-concert holograms. There’s grist here for a generation’s worth of conference papers. You can marvel at (and maybe make sense of) this phenomenon at the J-Pop Summit, a two-day Japanese pop-culture street fair that features dance parties (with the Danceroid crew!) and live performances from real live performers including the Patsychords, Layla Lane, and teen duo the Bayonettes from the Bay Area Girls Rock Camp. There are also films (including premieres of anime and J-pop videos) and a conference featuring thoughtful discussions of all the latest in Japanese pop music, especially vocaloid. Look for the vocaloid greats the Zaneeds, who are sort of like the Neptunes except the Zaneeds’ electro hitmakers are entirely virtual. Their music is delicate, soaring, and wistful, something like a baby bird first shoved from its nest.
Saturdays, Sundays, noon. Starts: Aug. 27. Continues through Aug. 28, 2011

About The Author

Alan Scherstuhl

Related Locations

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed
  1. Most Popular

Slideshows

  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"