Even today in 2018, many decades into the ubiquity of self-publishing and independent distribution, micro-scenes exist without apparent connection to the world beyond the creators’ immediate community. For example, take the mystery people (or person?) behind elementperspective, a mostly-online-only label based somewhere in Japan. Ever heard of them? Neither did I until very recently. Would you be surprised to learn that this obscure label had upwards of 200 releases, distributed over six separate Bandcamp pages? The elementperspective rabbit hole runs deep. I can’t claim to have listened to it all, but so far what I’ve absorbed is impressive stuff. The music ranges from club-friendly techno-pop to rude digital noise… something of a cross between Kompakt, Mille Plateaux, and the similarly “outsider” Zero Gravity label with a striking design sense that recalls Raster-Noton‘s minimal clean lines, solid colors and scant information.
The only name I recognize from their vast catalog of (mostly) free and download-only releases is drone artist Gallery Six (aka Hidekazu Imashiga). Upon exploring a bit, I’ve learned that that Sanmi his own Bandcamp page, indicating a catalog beyond elementperspective. All the other band names might be the work of one person, for all I can tell: Blep, e.p., ±, Itsuqi Doi, Coda… ring any bells for you? No? Most of these artists have only ever released anything on elementperspective, reinforcing the idea of a hermetic community. In any case, this trove of music is worth dipping into.
There are six separate Bandcamp pages for elementperspective… a few for download-only albums, one for mixtapes that stream but cannot be downloaded, and one for streamable albums that cannot be downloaded but have physical editions available for purchase. The same person (or people?) run this Bandcamp page and this Bandcamp page, this one here, this page, this additional page and also this other one. Hope you didn’t have other plans for today.