while I resisted doing a deep dive on the catalog for C103 (you can watch two gents flip through the physical catalog if you’re interested in some twee nostalgia, as if we’re not all using the web catalog at this point), it doesn’t mean I’m not scrounging anyway. turns out we’re in a banner year: miko miko nurse is 20 years old, and loser kashiwagi is gracing us with a memory booklet, a retrospective book, and a two-disc album full of remixes. don’t dare call him a one-hit wonder, though, because he’s also the composer behind cho ren sha. he seems self-aware enough to have already reminded us for about as long that he’s not dead, a forgivable mistake to make unless you also keep up with touhou m-1 gand prix and have never forgotten to keep your doujin spirit. have you ever wanted a shoegaze take on peak denpa? probably not, but no one was asking for neko nabe either. it’s not trudempa unless you’re deeply unsettled by it.
miko miko nurse is something of a forgotten older sibling to some of the more heralded denpa tracks that have somehow lept into the tiktok era. while it didn’t manage to make the cut for kumikyoku, you could count on it to pad out the less prestigious melodies that came after it. more to its height, dwango was using it to promote ringtones1 before they got involved with that weird streaming video thing you might know them for. chibi-tech swept the inagural famicompo with their cover of it, something you’d probably never know from the boost that youtube gave to runner-up artificial intelligence bomb beyond the contest. under that banner, it feels appropriate that its only real champion twenty years on is its adamantly indie creator, now leading a remix album and a mini live for aging uncles too tired to stand anymore. if kids had more respect for the animutation as an establishing medium, we’d probably already have the nightcore and soundcloud mixes it damn well deserves to have organically in its wake.
if you sip from the poison well that is the matome blog, one topic that’s been hard to avoid over the last few years has been the harsh buzz that comiket is a fading phenomenon. most recently that’s come as a long expose claiming that we’re exiting the “comiket era”. as useful as this aggregate of data is to peek into trends like female-focused genres retreating to satellite events or drying up entirely, or previous wall circles abandoning distribution to field skeb requests instead, it’s also annoyingly grandiose about what has always been an event that has never existed on unshifting ground, quite literally outgrowing the campus halls and old harumi fairgrounds that were once able to contain it. turf wars have been fought over circle numbers for about as long as such numbers have been observed, so perhaps it’s also no surprise that this expose has largely become yet another launchpad to gripe about how the korean boogeyman is sweeping the event, helped along by the otaku appetite to cheer for cultural collapse that will accelerate discovering the next big thing. undeniably, comiket is morphing and having new external pressures appied to it; that’s always been true, even when we didn’t have the hard data to prove that it was. although the long tail for particiption at it appears bruised, it is, for now, guarded by names that will show up to keep its spirit alive no matter how far it falls. loser kashiwagi isn’t dead yet.
for any comiket soldiers that might happen to be reading this on their first train, you can find loser kashiwagi’s table today at 東W25a. no word on the book yet, but the remix album is available for mail order on melonbooks!
hiroyuki has unfortunately infected every facet of japanese net history, so of course he also happens to be the narrator you hear at the end of these CMs ↩