The 1980s are a highly underrated decade for music

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IsabellaLinton
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04 Jul 2022, 10:04 pm

Yes, but at the time my radio station played them all day.

They played that type of music until about five years ago.

It wasn't called "classic rock" in the 80s because it was only ten years old (max).



DuckHairback
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05 Jul 2022, 4:39 am

Personally, I like very little 80s music. It's not so much the music as the instruments that were being experimented with and the production styles that were in favour at the time. For me those things ruin what was probably perfectly good music. Even albums from that era which I do like - Talking Heads stuff, Paul Simon's Graceland, Dexy's Midnight Runners, Michael Jackson's Thriller, even some of Dylan's 80s stuff - I generally prefer to listen to live performances of because they don't have that fake plasticky studio sound that was applied to everything in the 80s.



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05 Jul 2022, 4:42 am

funeralxempire wrote:
IsabellaLinton wrote:
Same.

I always thought New Wave was the electronic no-guitar stuff.

I remember being freaked out when all the kids in high school in LA were into "New Wave".
I didn't have a name for it at the time.
I didn't know what radio station to listen to or how to fit in.
Suddenly everyone was wearing bright colours and listening to stuff I didn't know.
My cousin dragged me to a Smiths concert.
I'd never heard of them and I pouted the whole time.

I was still obsessed with OZZY and Zeppelin, because of my resistance to change.
It was like someone suddenly changed the rules without telling me.

I just finally got adapted and then discovered I'd missed the entire Grunge phase.


I always got the impression that new wave lumped together a lot of stuff that came up after punk, not all of which was closely related. Bananarama and Dead or Alive don't have much in common with The Cure, who don't have much in common with Elvis Costello, yet those are all acts that I've heard lumped together as new wave.

It's more of a catch-all term than a lot of other genre names, new wave's main commonalities seem to be a few models of synthesizers and some production techniques.

For what it's worth I've also heard bands like The Smiths described as more of a reaction to the synth based bands. They kinda represented the next wave of British rock music that followed new wave, which maybe makes them more analogous to a band like REM.

You got it.

That said it is one of those things that if you ask 100 people you will get a hundred different definitions of "New wave".

What contributors of this thread need to be mindful of is that there is generally a big difference between how New wave is defined in America and how it is defined in the U.K.

In the U.K. it is considered an arty and commercialized version of punk rock. Even then it was varied from Elvis Costello, Talking Heads, B-52's, Blondie, Squeeze, XTC, Devo, ska revival acts like Madness fell under the New wave umbrella. Nothing much after 1981 or 1982 is considered New wave there. Synthpop, New Romantic etc are considered completely separate genres with good reason those genres have roots in glam rock and disco not punk.

Those late 70s acts are considered New wave in the UK are also considered the New wave in America. The difference is Punk was a major cultural phenomenon in the UK, in America, it was a few sensational newspaper stories so the American audiences did not know or care that all those Second British Invasion synth-playing androgenous bands on their MTV had little to do musically with punk. From the sound to its video delivery, it was literally a "New Wave" to most Americans. That I think is why the change was so jarring to Isabella. Having been a miserable teen during the 70s I embraced the change.

REM and the Smiths were first labeled New wave when they started out in the 80s. When Alternative exploded in the 90s people realized they were not New wave but Alternative pioneers.


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05 Jul 2022, 5:09 am

IsabellaLinton wrote:
It wasn't called "classic rock" in the 80s because it was only ten years old (max).

In the 70s and most of the 80s, it was called rock, the radio format it was played on was called Album Oriented Rock(AOR).

Classic Rock started as a radio format during the 80s and was adapted by the public as a genre. Now Classic Rock stations play acts from the ‘90s.


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