Dance, dance revolution

Dance, dance revolution
Members from the J-pop girl group Perfume in their music video for Electro World.

SINGAPORE - Where J once ruled, K now lords over.

For the past decade, J-pop has been fighting a losing battle against the attack of the K-pop clones.

It has been hit by the double blow of its waning influence in Asia and a failure to conquer the Western market.

Even an accomplished singer like Utada Hikaru, who at her peak was THE outstanding musical talent in Japan, made changes to her winning formula for her two forays into the American market.

Some would say that she sold out.

Unfortunately, her albums didn't.

Her attempts to connect with the stateside audience by going mainstream R&B failed miserably.

But it's not all bad. Mega-idol group AKB48, kawaii rockers Babymetal and the phenomenon that is Kyary Pamyu Pamyu have shown they are able to make an impact overseas without changing their style to suit a global market.

Which brings us to chart-topping electronic dance group Perfume.

Leading The Charge

Having recently celebrated the tenth anniversary of their major debut, the group is leading the next wave in J-pop's counter-attack against the Hallyu Wave.

The trio of 26-year-old Ayano Omoto (Nocchi), Yuka Kashino (Kashiyuka) and Ayaka Nishiwaki (A-chan), both 25, are essentially the result of the marvellous work of their producer, technopop genius Yasutaka Nakata.

Despite their heavily vocoded and autotuned vocals, there is plenty of heart in their music. And plenty of energy.

K-pop fans rave about Korean artists' dance routines, but Perfume's choreography is truly innovative, giving off a retro-futuristic yet ethereal feel.

Quite a feat considering the complex routines are done while wearing high heels.

A typical Perfume concert is an onslaught of bass, beats and innovative visuals.

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