Plastic Love

Plastic Love by Mariya Takeuchi Official Video

To receive an official music video decades after its first release is a rarity for a pop song. For Mariya Takeuchi’s 1984 tune Plastic Love this was actually the case. It took its record company, Warner Music Japan, until 2019 to issue an official music video. In the meantime, Plastic Love had become a smash hit on the Internet, accumulating millions of views on YouTube and other music sharing platforms.

Plastic Love belongs to a subgenre of J-pop called Japanese City Pop. Stylistically, it is a blend of Western disco and funk music, spiced up with a bit of East-Asian flavor. The song tells the story of a woman who lost the man she truly loves. Any new guy pursuing her could not make her forget the loneliness she was feeling after her loss.

City Pop Playlist

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Vanishing Vision by Internet Club, imageVanishing Vision
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Music You Thought You Knew

The comeback of Plastic Love and City Pop is closely linked to streaming and music sharing platforms.

Andy Cabic of the American folk band Vetiver explains the music’s appeal to Westerners with its similarities to US West Coast pop. According to Cabic, the musical experience is like “a fresh listen to the stuff you may have already heard and thought you knew.”