EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the first in a series of pieces designed to introduce you to vaporwave artists who release quality stuff but have not been talked about and additionally has not released any new music for quite a while. I feel like the shine should be shown to everyone in the vaporwave community, including those people who I mentioned above, enjoy!
Everybody in music wants to be a superproducer, meaning to produce all genres and all sounds with some form of originality mixed in. However, superproducing takes a very specific set of skills and as a result, very few of those musicians actually become superproducers. This artist is one of those superproducers; in fact, he’s a vaporwave superproducer who managed to build an identity off of taking other artists styles and making it his own.
身元THIEF is an artist who’s persona is built around the notion of “stealing” other artist’s possessions under the genre name of “crimewave”. It’s a nice notion to say the least, crime is very rarely featured in vaporwave so to see somebody do it is nice and in addition, building one’s persona around it is also groundbreaking and innovative. The persona is used to humbly homage some of vaporwave’s greatest artists and their distinctive subgenres from classic-style to ambient to futurefunk to even hard vapour. He has made two albums based around this concept so far and both of them are solidly constructed and excellently executed.
It would be easy for an artist to screw up a homage record, many people get in over their heads with the whole topic and then proceed to make a mess of things but this artist; he clearly took the time to carefully analyze every song, every element of what makes that song tick and then proceed to recreate it in his own image while remaining true to the artist. The examples are far and wide, ranging from copying VAPERROR’s smooth and drum light trap sound to Saint Pepsi’s futurefunk sound to Infinite Frequency’s lo-fi dank computer sound. He even manages to copy 3D BLAST’s trademark of anime sounds so effortlessly to the point where you’d confuse his version for an actual 3D Blast song.
The amount of talent that the artist has is immense and well utilized. If he truly had his mind set, he could replicate any musical genre there was to date. There’s nothing stopping him from doing so because if he can clearly replicate the sounds of other vaporwave artists than just imagine what he could do to music as a whole. He knows how to get a specific sound from an artist, he knows how to crunch a sound just right, he knows how clear he needs to make it to pull off the impression, he knows every single thing he needs to do. Normal people would think that it’s too much for them to handle, that they could never possibly do it. Look at 身元THIEF… he’s doing it without any effort.
There is no limit as to how many vaporwave artists he can sample. He has done past ones like Chuck Person and recent ones like 3D BLAST; in fact I bet that he’s working on a new album right now, one where he’ll rip off many more artists and claim them as their own and he’ll do it with the same amount of skill and effort that he did for the past two albums. Of course, that bet might be wrong, the artist might of moved on to bigger and better things which is understandable considering that his skill is worth much more than the movement of vaporwave but still, this is immense talent that must be recognized by the vaporwave community.
I find 身元THIEF’s work to be amazing and incredible and worthy of rediscovery, there is no limits to what it can do and it’ll do any subgenre without hesitation and completely with satisfaction. The variety here is incredible, the originality here is incredible and it just sucks that he has been forgotten. Let this article stand as a reminder of what an artist is capable of doing once he puts his mind to it.