ccCaffeine’s “ccCaffeine_xx 1995™”: Music review

There’s something brazen and absurd about vaporwave.
Brazen because these artists seem to be going far beyond the boundaries of what could reasonably be called a sample – taking entire lines, verses, solos, choruses from songs and then pasting the slices back together with no new content added, no composition or actual recording of instruments. Yet, the collage-like nature of this approach is compelling and legitimate: just like deconstructing the insidiousness of a glossy magazine advertisement by slicing up a few ads with a box cutter and then rearranging the pieces so that the juxtapositions create oppositions, statements that are farcical, nonsensical, or subtly ingenuous. ccCaffeine’s “ccCaffeine_xx 1995™” is a mismash of samples from songs so cheesy I would never listen to them, but spliced together the tapestry forms some kind of commentary on the cheesiness, exposes something under the veneer, while decompiling the sum of the parts into a different equation that tugs at the nostalgia center in a way that is haunting and distracting, carrying you away.
The splices are sped up, slowed down, repeated like a broken record or skipping CD, taking the organic and making it machinelike, as if hinting at something profane in the over-digitization of the analog.
Yet you suspect that there’s no great plan behind the results, that there’s a great deal of the random and the irreverent at work here.
The alacrity with which someone else’s sincerely meant work is stripped apart and reassembled is flippant, impudent, and the results are as confoundingly engaging and bewitching as they are absurd.
ccCaffeine - ccCaffeine_xx 1995™ - cover

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