The PC music movement is kind of the underground Internet successor to vaporwave. It’s a niche genre with a very devoted following comprised of a very small group of people, clamoring to artists with likeminded approaches to creating music. And like 2010 vaporwave, we’re in the thick of what will probably be the only time PC music thrives.
It’s a hit-or-miss trend that’s comprised of an overwhelming amount of misses, but when it’s done right, it’s a pretty stunning exercise in reinventing pop motifs. Stripping away a lot of the layering, the bubblegum aesthetics are cranked to their most hyperbolic, gushing hedonistically uncomfortable vibes. Most tracks are hinged on one chorus, sung by an all-too-perfect vocal style taken from any number of female pop stars. It’s flawlessly polished but feels strangely off nonetheless, like looking at the future of utopian pop.
IRCIRL holds a decent presence in the PC Music scene, though obviously not as strong as artists like Sophie or Danny L Harle or A.G. Cook. His newest track, “FLIRT”, off the collaborative EP with BOYFRIEND, is another in a long line of borrowed approaches to the pile of warped pop tunes. The chorus revolves around the standardly careless and purposefully ironic satire of self-gratification that’s become a staple in the genre. The vocals repeat, “When I’m walkin through the mall/If I could man I probably would flirt with all of y’all”, but disappoint with their normalcy in terms of delivery.
The best parts of songs like these are the amped-up and crazy sound effects, the slightly distorted and undeniably fraught vocalizations, and the infectiousness of the lyrics. Who, after listening to PRODUCT, wasn’t singing, “I can make you feel better, if you let meeeee”? Lines about stealing girlfriends and dropping dope phrases like “step up”, “player”, and “mane” paired against heavenly building synths should equate to a rising paramount of sickly dulcetness. Instead, the poor attempt at cinematic synth build-ups and an overwhelming cheesy lyricism leads “FLIRT” to fall flat as just another addition in a growingly mediocre trend whose discernibility from regular pop music is becoming thinner and thinner.
– Zach W.