This post originally appeared on the 10th Dentist blog on Sunday, January 24th, 2021.
Released through Australian “Post-internet” label Sunset Grid on January 24th of 2021, MegaZoneEx’s SEAPUNK’D serves as a hopeful refresher of the vaporwave genre. While weaving their way through vaporwave and sister genres, MegaZoneEx explores but never falls victim to the cliches of those genres. Track highlights include the more accessible Ladytron-esque ‘The Shuffle,’ and industrial-nod ‘On My Mind’ built of a surprisingly soothing mix of vaporwave and industrial sonic aesthetics. SEAPUNK’D should be worked into casual rotation for the more particular vaporwave and future funk connoisseurs who may find themselves overwhelmed with quantity and underwhelmed with quality.
Unfortunately, where SEAPUNK’D ultimately suffers is in its inability to distinguish itself as a fully realized album. From smaller details such as directionless track naming to a much more jarring max volume inconsistency, this effort at times can feel more like a mix-CD. Its 16 track, 29 minute runtime can feel very bloated, but hopefully going forward MegaZoneEx can enforce a stricter self-editorial approach.
As stated in the album closing manifesto ‘PSA,’ “…[vaporwave] is still young. Its pioneers come and go, leaving it astray with no rules or guidelines. Vaporwave keeps dying because no one is here to save it.” While vaporwave is far from saved, MegaZoneEx is keeping it alive with yet another breath.
For fans of: Ladytron, Macintosh Plus, Ventech97