Floral Shoppe

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Floral Shoppe
A composite image consisting of a bust depicting the Greek god Helios, a black checkerboard on a pink background, and a screenshot of the New York City skyline with the World Trade Center visible.
Studio album by
ReleasedDecember 9, 2011 (2011-12-09) [1]
GenreVaporwave
Length47:47
LabelBeer on the Rug
ProducerRamona Andra Xavier
Vektroid chronology
Dream Castle
(2011)
Floral Shoppe
(2011)
Contemporary Sapporo
(2012)
Alternate cover
2012 reissue cover (featuring the faceless bust of Helios)
2012 reissue cover
(featuring the faceless bust of Helios)
Alternate cover
Cassette release artwork
Cassette release artwork

Floral Shoppe (Japanese: フローラルの専門店, Hepburn: Furōraru no Senmon-ten) is a studio album by the American electronic musician Vektroid under the one-time alias Macintosh Plus, released on December 9, 2011 by the independent record label Beer on the Rug. It is her ninth full-length album and was one of the first releases of the 2010s microgenre known as vaporwave to gain popular recognition on the Internet. Since then, Floral Shoppe has been considered by some critics to be the defining album of the style.

Background and composition[edit]

Vektroid's alias for Floral Shoppe was Macintosh Plus, named after the computer of the same name.[2] The album is frequently cited as an example of the then-emerging Internet-based vaporwave subgenre,[3] along with works from other artists released by the record label Beer on the Rug.[4] Prior to Floral Shoppe, Ramona Andra Xavier had previously produced other chillwave and vaporwave releases under multiple pseudonyms, including Vektroid, Laserdisc Visions, dstnt, and New Dreams Ltd.[4] Adam Harper of Dummy, in an article about the vaporwave culture, described the album's content as "chopped, glitching and screwed adult contemporary soul alongside twinkling spa promotional tunes."[4]

Xavier takes a rather unsettling approach to sampling throughout Floral Shoppe, with "voices slowed to wordless drawls, tempos abused at whim, [and] snippets mashed over each other at clashing time signatures."[5] Material sampled throughout the album includes several songs from new-age group Dancing Fantasy's 1993 studio album Worldwide, various funk and R&B songs from the 1980s,[6][7] especially Diana Ross' take of "It's Your Move",[8] the soundtrack for the 1997 video game Turok: Dinosaur Hunter [5] and the soft rock band Pages.[9][10]

Lisa Frank 420/Modern Computing[edit]

The album's second track, リサフランク420 / 現代のコンピュー" (Lisa Frank 420 / Modern Computing), has become nearly synonymous with the term "vaporwave" within popular discourse. The song had over 40.5 million views on YouTube before being taken down on April 27, 2018 due to copyright claims by Sony Music,[11] and has spawned many covers. The song was used in the Digg video "The Most Satisfying Video In The World".[12]

A fan made music video was created by YouTuber "Sun Levi" in 2014. It features highly surreal and colorful imagery with crude animation. The video was made from CGI shorts from the 1980s uploaded by YouTube channel "VintageCG". The shorts in the video include Deja Vu and Mental Images.[13] The video currently has 1.5 million views on YouTube.[14]

Release[edit]

Floral Shoppe was released digitally to Vektroid's Bandcamp music store on December 9, 2011 by independent record label Beer on the Rug.[15] The album's tracks titles are all written in Japanese.[16] It received considerable online popularity, eventually becoming "the most hyped vaporwave release on the Internet."[17] Beer on the Rug later announced a re-release of the album in C44 cassette format.[18] The cassette edition, limited to 100 copies, includes two bonus tracks not found on the digital issue and a code to download the album.[18] Several songs appear in edited and/or crossfaded forms, while "Library" and "Mathematics" are featured at slower speeds than the versions found digitally. Vektroid later launched a line of tank tops and hoodies sporting a variation of the Floral Shoppe album cover.[19]

On August 6, 2017, New York-based record label Olde English Spelling Bee announced an official version of Floral Shoppe on vinyl. The record is colored "bubblegum pink" and follows the cassette version of the track listing. It included a fold-out poster and a download card for a digital copy of the album that included a download-only bonus track.[20][21]

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
Pitchfork8.8/10[22]
Sputnikmusic5/5[5]

Floral Shoppe was met with a polarizing reception from critics [23][24] and casual listeners alike, being equally "criticized and acclaimed for [Xavier's] soulless take on muzak".[19] Jonathan Dean of Tiny Mix Tapes wrote positively of Floral Shoppe, citing the album as "one of the best single documents of the vaporwave scene yet, a series of estranged but soulful manipulations of found audio that carefully constructs its own meditative headspace through the careful accretion of defamiliarized memory triggers."[25]

On the year-end annual Pazz & Jop critics' poll for albums, administered by The Village Voice, the album received two votes.[26] Perfect Sound Forever's Miles Bowe cited Floral Shoppe as one of his year-end best albums.[27] It was also named the sixth best album of the year by Tiny Mix Tapes, with reviewer James Parker opining that it "slid seamlessly between pure pop pleasure and the ironic framing of that pleasure, the presence of the artist at turns barely noticeable and dramatically foregrounded."[28] Assessing the influence of Floral Shoppe on vaporwave, along with the genre's eventual decline, Parker wrote:

In many ways, New Dreams Ltd., the umbrella moniker for Macintosh Plus, 情報デスクVIRTUAL, Laserdisc Visions, and Sacred Tapestry, embodied the genre best. Not only did it provide some of vaporwave's most essential releases, but it also cannily folded at just the right moment, thanking us all for visiting the Virtual Casino. 2012 wasn't just the year vaporwave broke; it was also the year it exhausted itself: morphed, rebranded, its practitioners moved on. If any single release deserves to be remembered, though, it is surely Floral Shoppe. From the very beginning, it stood out not only for its artful marrying of the conceptual with the sensual, but also for its performance of the inseparability between the two.[28]

Floral Shoppe has since been heralded as one of the most significant albums in the early days of vaporwave.[29] In a retrospective review, Adam Downer of Sputnikmusic characterized the album as "constantly—and delightfully—unsettling" and "a beautiful record that's both warm and strange, nostalgic and futuristic, bizarre and totally simple."[5] Writing for Pitchfork, Miles Bowe concluded, "Nothing could change or improve its sound which, even after thousands of soundalikes, has lost none of its perception-shattering power."[22]

Track listing[edit]

2011 digital release
No.TitleLength
1."Booting" (ブート Būto)3:24
2."Lisa Frank 420 / Modern Computing ( sometimes translated as the computing of Lisa Frank / contemporary 420 )" (リサフランク420 / 現代のコンピュー Risa Furanku 420 / Gendai no Konpyū)7:20
3."Floral Shoppe" (花の専門店 Hana no Senmon-ten)3:55
4."Library" (ライブラリ Raiburari)2:43
5."Geography" (地理 Chiri)4:46
6."Chill Divin' with ECCO" (ECCOと悪寒ダイビング ECCO to Okan Daibingu)6:42
7."Mathematics" (数学 Sūgaku)6:54
8."Standby" (待機 Taiki)1:10
9."Te" ()2:16
10."Moon" ( Tsuki; untitled on original release)6:14
11."Seabed" (海底 Kaitei; untitled on original release)2:18
Total length:47:47
2012 cassette and 2017 vinyl/digital releases
No.TitleLength
1."Booting" (ブート Būto)3:21
2."Lisa Frank 420 / Modern Computing" (リサフランク420 / 現代のコンピュー Risa Furanku 420 / Gendai no Konpyū)7:12
3."Floral Shoppe" (花の専門店 Hana no Senmon-ten)3:18
4."Library" (ライブラリ Raiburari)2:47
5."Geography" (地理 Chiri)4:38
6."Chill Divin' with ECCO" (ECCOと悪寒ダイビング ECCO to Okan Daibingu)6:23
7."Mathematics" (数学 Sūgaku)7:31
8."Foreign Banks Aviation" (外ギン AVIATION Soto Gin AVIATION)2:30
9."I Am Pico" (ピコ "Piko")2:03
10."Standby" (待機 Taiki)1:10
11."Te" ()2:02
Total length:42:57

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Floral Shoppe - Macintosh Plus | User Reviews". AllMusic.
  2. ^ "Vektroid – Bio". Vektroid. Retrieved December 7, 2013.
  3. ^ Gibb, Rory (November 8, 2012). "The Month's Electronic Music: Through The Looking Glass". The Quietus. Retrieved December 7, 2013.
  4. ^ a b c Harper, Adam (December 7, 2012). "Comment: Vaporwave and the pop-art of the virtual plaza". Dummy. London. Retrieved December 7, 2013.
  5. ^ a b c d Downer, Adam (February 16, 2014). "Review: Macintosh Plus – FLORAL SHOPPE". Sputnikmusic. Retrieved February 27, 2014.
  6. ^ "I Only Have Eyes for You". January 23, 2017 – via YouTube.
  7. ^ "Macintosh Plus". WhoSampled.
  8. ^ "It's Your Move". March 11, 2015 – via YouTube.
  9. ^ "You Need A Hero". October 8, 2015 – via YouTube.
  10. ^ "If I Saw You Again". September 22, 2014 – via YouTube.
  11. ^ "The Original Macintosh Plus 420 Video With 42 Million Views Has Been Removed". www.reddit.com. Retrieved 2018-06-15.
  12. ^ "The Most Satisfying Video In The World - Video Dailymotion". Dailymotion.
  13. ^ "VintageCG". YouTube.
  14. ^ "MACINTOSH PLUS - リサフランク420 / 現代のコンピュー (Music Video)". June 5, 2014 – via YouTube.
  15. ^ "Floral Shoppe | Beer On The Rug". Beer on the Rug. Bandcamp. Retrieved December 7, 2013.
  16. ^ Zha, Tim (March 2, 2013). "The Best Records of 2012…". Pi. London. Archived from the original on March 6, 2013. Retrieved March 6, 2013.CS1 maint: Unfit url (link)
  17. ^ Gierczak, Antoni. "Vektroid: Rainbowtrinity". WQHS-DT. Archived from the original on November 29, 2014. Retrieved December 28, 2013.
  18. ^ a b "BOTR009 – Macintosh Plus :: 'Floral Shoppe' C44". Beer on the Rug. Retrieved December 7, 2013.
  19. ^ a b Petty, Alec (August 20, 2013). "Vektroid is Now Making T-Shirts, Hip-Hop". Ad Hoc. New York. Archived from the original on August 28, 2013. Retrieved December 28, 2013.
  20. ^ "FLORAL SHOPPE by MACINTOSH PLUS". Olde English Spelling Bee. August 6, 2017. Archived from the original on October 5, 2017. Retrieved October 4, 2017.
  21. ^ "FLORAL SHOPPE VINYL DEMO & PLAYTHROUGH". Olde English Spelling Bee. October 4, 2017. Retrieved October 4, 2017.
  22. ^ a b Bowe, Miles (April 21, 2019). "Macintosh Plus: Floral Shoppe". Pitchfork. Retrieved April 21, 2019.
  23. ^ "Macintosh Plus- Floral Shoppe ALBUM REVIEW". November 28, 2012 – via Internet Archive.
  24. ^ "10 Times I Changed My Opinion On Albums Pt. 2". March 29, 2019 – via YouTube.
  25. ^ Dean, Jonathan (July 2012). "Favorite 30 Albums of 2012 (So Far) – Macintosh Plus: Floral Shoppe [Beer On The Rug]". Tiny Mix Tapes. Retrieved December 7, 2013.
  26. ^ "Albums – Votes For Macintosh Plus: Floral Shoppe". The Village Voice. New York. Retrieved December 7, 2013.
  27. ^ Bowe, Miles (December 2012). "2012 writers' poll: Miles Bowe". Perfect Sound Forever. New York. Retrieved December 29, 2013.
  28. ^ a b "2012: Favorite 50 Albums of 2012". Tiny Mix Tapes. December 2012. Retrieved December 28, 2012.
  29. ^ "Vaporwave: subversive dream music for the post-Internet age". Vaporwave: subversive dream music for the post-Internet age | Editorial | Bandwagon - Live music, bands and concert guide for Singapore, Manila and Jakarta. May 18, 2016.
  30. ^ "Macintosh Plus - Floral Shoppe (OESB Vinyl LP Download Version)". Discogs.

External links[edit]