Just in case you were wondering, I work in a toy/candy store. And it never fails to amaze me how much "new wave" music is played at my place of employment. Wikipedia (oh, please, don't pretend like you don't use it for all YOUR research) defines New Wave as any music that emerged alongside punk, but couldn't be defined as punk, and later on it was expanded to become a catchall for all those other indefinable new types of music emerging, like SynthPop (my favourite!). Perhaps, like the artists and hipsters of the 90's looked towards disco as an inspiration (Hey there, "Groove is in the Heart") and idealized it as "oldies," now in the Troubled Teens we will look at New Wave music of the 80's (generally speaking) as our "oldies" music - if I were to make my ideal playlist of this genre, it would include the following songs:
"Obsession" -- Animotion you really just have to see this video to understand what I'm going for here. They say Lady Gaga is copying Madonna, I think she has her sights set a bit higher...on ANIMOTION.
"The Metro" -- Berlin if you want to suggest that their greatest song was "Take My Breath Away," sir, you've got a fight on your hands.
"I Ran" -- A Flock of Seagulls this is, and I'm going out on a crazy limb here, probably the most widely recognized "New Wave" song I can think of. Plus, the video is evocative of everything New Wave: crazy hair, shiny things, and subpar camermanship.
"Cars" -- Gary Numan oh, and did I mention pasty skin and keyboards? The Five Pillars of New Wave.
"Once In A Lifetime" -- Talking Heads if this song doesn't change your life, then.... congratulations, you're sober. Just kidding. This song makes me cry...sometimes. When I'm not sober.
"Whip It" -- Devo if "I Ran" is not the cornerstone of New Wave, this totally is.
"Rock Lobster" -- The B52's according to legend, John Lennon had given up on creating new music until he heard this song in a club, and he returned to songwriting having been inspired by the new horizons possible in music. Also, pretty girls screaming nonsense.
"Don't You Want Me Baby" -- Human League a cookie commercial, and constant overplay thanks to 80's nostalgia distracts us from the awesomeness that is this song, which may be the most recognized on the list.
"Pop Muzik" -- M totally ahead of its time. I basically subconsciously look down on anyone who has never heard this song. I can't help it.
I totally think we can make this happen. Look at how heavily today's music relies on synthesizers anyway! It's not even a stretch! They're all obviously influenced by this stuff, if they're not outright sampling it. Next time you're at a rockin' party, and someone threatens to pop on that tired old Journey song again, liven things up with a little "Safety Dance" instead!
Just think, someday music history majors will have to listen to these songs to understand how truly messed up the 80's were, what with Reagan and Bush and designer drugs and MTV and neon fanny packs. They'll shake their heads and mutter four letter words under their breath, like "What?" and "Junk!", when they're really searching for a five-letter word instead: GENIUS.