It also expresses the current generations' (late millenial but early gen z mostly) longing for romanticism. Today's culture has embrassed the 'end of history' and nihilism - nothing is held sacred, nothing really matters besides vain happiness. We are expected to tow the line of progress in order to deny ourselves and future generations of human impulses and eventually the human experience. Vaporwave is a rejection of that, it looks to sources of the meaning we lack in the present through the past and foreign places; Greek and Roman society, Japanese and Asian society, and the last known period where western society actually had a soul - the 80s and early 90s.
Its really political when you think about it.