Every year, the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in California publishes a hotly anticipated poster detailing which artists will be playing the most buzzed-about festival in the United States and possibly the world.
The 2020 offering didn't disappoint, and even had a treat for fans of Japanese music. This year's Coachella, held across two weekends in April, will feature Vocaloid avatar Hatsune Miku and Harajuku ambassador Kyary Pamyu Pamyu playing on both weekends' Fridays and Sundays, respectively. The news saw Twitter go wild, and early reaction from English-language music writers was positive, with Stereogum hailing the pair as "wildly conceptual J-pop" and Pitchfork devoting decent space to both in a reaction piece.
This double dose of J-pop at a festival best known for Beyonce's 2018 blockbuster showing and a clientele made up mainly of Los Angeles influencers marks a high point for a recent trend for festivals booking Japanese acts. Artists from this country aren't selling out arenas abroad or commanding much media attention, but they've carved out a certain success that's impressive in a boom-or-bust industry.