Turning New Songs into 80s Nostalgia: Is This a Thing?

If you came of age musically in the 1980s, you’ll probably remember how futuristic everything sounded. Synthesizers, sequencers, drum machines, samplers. Who needs guitars and real drums when we had this technology?

Well, it turns out that these sounds were fleeting and now date this music like the shot of Michael Douglas and his cell phone in Wall Street. We got tired of Linn Drums, Syndrums, the presets of the Yamaha DX-7 and Phil Collins. Grunge set everything right with a return to the basics of rock instrumentation.

But let’s engage in a little counterfactual/alternative history. Forget what the world would look like had Hitler want WW II. What if the synth sounds of the 80s had conquered guitars forever? Then we might be listening to music like this.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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5 thoughts on “Turning New Songs into 80s Nostalgia: Is This a Thing?

  • But then again we had Depeche Mode.

  • The vocals seem to be a bit lost in the mix. Other than that this is a pure piece of early to mid 80s synth pop perfection.

  • Hilarious! My brain is so confused. I love new music but my heart is still in the 80’s

  • I’m hearing a lot of new stuff, especially on The Edge, that reminds me of 80’s music. The synths and electronic drums are all still there, and a lot of sampling. I can see where these new bands are drawing their inspiration from. I grew up in the 60’s and 70’s, so this was something I got into in college in the 80’s. It makes sense to me, and I like a lot of it, so no complaints from my corner. Nice to have “regular” rock bands still around though, like Billy Talent and The Arkells.

  • Sounds like M83.


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