February 27, 2013

One of Japan’s most well known, and well liked, electronic music DJ-producers, FPM was born in Kyoto as Tomoyuki Tanaka.

Short for Fantastic Plastic Machine, FPM’s clean-cut sound draws from a jazz, bossa nova, funk, soft rock and pop, but he isn’t restricted by genre classification and also incorporates many other types of music into his sound palette. In the late 1980s, Tanaka was the bassist in a new wave rock band called Margarine Strikes Back, and in the early 1990s, he became a regular club DJ in the Kansai area of Japan, working as part of a DJ team – which included PIZZICATO FIVE’s Tasuharu Konishi, and artist and fellow beat-head Towa Tei – known as Sound Impossible.

While playing with Sound Impossible, buddy Towa Tei convinced Tanaka to go back to making beats, and in 1997 Tanaka created his solo project Fantastic Plastic Machine under Columbia Japan’s Readymade Records label. His first two albums, “The Fantastic Plastic Machine” and “Luxury,” released in 1997 and 1998 respectively, got the all-round thumbs up and put him in to the international spotlight. And now in 2013, he’s fresh off his newest album “Scale,” released off of Avex’s Cutting Edge imprint.

Because of his bold but playful use of sampling, FPM’s beats have been used in all sorts of games and TV commercials over the years – pretty much all of the tracks on his latest offering “Scale” have been used in various ad campaigns nationwide. And not limited to Japan – he’s had his tracks featured in some of DJ Stephane Pompougnac’s silky “Hôtel Costes” series, and he’s also been featured on the soundtracks for “Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me,” and British sitcom “Spaced.”

When it comes to laying down beats for CMs and soundtracks, or just plain DJing, FPM has years and years of experience under his belt, but with every release he comes out with, he manages to stay at the forefront of Japan’s electronic pop music scene.

■ Artist official site