General Election Meme War Heats Up: Tories Release Lo-Fi ‘Boriswave’ Beats

The deeply ironic, youth-orientated meme campaign being fought by the Conservative Party ahead of next month’s general election continues as the party’s official account publishes an hour of Lo-Fi beats “to get Brexit done to”.

The looping video of UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson reading on a train while a highly sylised countryside scene of pink cherry blossom trees passes by outside, set to a soundtrack of ambient relaxing music interspersed with occasional clips of Mr Johnson vowing to get Brexit done was published to the Conservative Party Youtube Monday night. The video is a parody of the Lo-fi Chill Beats Study Mix genre and is the latest part of the Conservative’s heavy push on social media to reach a younger voting audience.

The social media output of the Conservative’s in this election has been a marked change from previous votes, in which the output has reached a high level of technical quality but has been very sincere. In the 2019 snap campaign, the emphasis has been on the ironic, and even the post-ironic, with retro aesthetics.

Among the notable content appealing to was an attack on Labour’s policy of nationalising the broadband internet network featuring an early 2000’s dial-up connection, bringing home the inefficiency of state-owned industry to a new millennial audience.

The UK Daily Telegraph newspaper shone some light on the “24-hour meme machine” working behind the scenes at Conservative Headquarters in October, a low-budget, high-impact campaigning effort run by two New Zealand social media experts in their 20s who previously worked on winning the last Australian election for conservatives there.

Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour party has also been trying its hand at internet virality — the Grime4Corbyn music campaign from 2017 was relaunched Monday, with the Metro newspaper reporting Grim artists Wiley, Nadia Rose and Lethal Bizzle collaborating on a forthcoming “grime event” to support the Labour Party.

While the Conservatives have been pushing at the post-ironic door, Labour’s social media output remains unknowingly ironic, with a new campaign video launched Tuesday morning featuring a dystopic future of gulags and Chinese-style organ harvesting. It is not made clear why the hard-left Jeremy Corbyn would be the best leader to steer the United Kingdom away from such outcomes, which have been a feature of left-wing regimes in the past.

 

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