WHY EVERYONE is GOING CRAZY FOR 80s-inspired SYNTHWAVE MUSIC
By Mark Nobes
So what exactly is Synthwave and why should you be bothered about it?
Its origins lie in the late 1970s and relates to synthesizer-based new wave, dark wave and synthpop music. I am no expert on the scene, but I can tell you that the latest synthwave resurgence (which started sometime in the mid noughties) marries modern production techniques with retro sounds, and is often heavily influenced by 80s video games, movie soundtracks and cartoons. Sub-genres include retrowave, futuresynth and outrun, the latter obviously gaining its title from the eighties 3D arcade driving game.
The main aim of synthwave is to revive the 1980s and early 90s electronic sounds, and tracks are often, but not always, instrumental. One of the best-known albums is the soundtrack to the movie Drive by Cliff Martinez.
Within the last few years, the scene has started to gain a wider audience, and I would urge anyone who grew-up listening to 80s electronic music to go onto Youtube and type in "synthwave". The videos are often accompanied by very cool 80s-inspired, neon and Tron style landscapes and many of them are compilations of the best tracks from the latest artists.
If you're a fan of electronic music legends such as Depeche Mode, Brad Fiedel (Terminator), John Carpenter or Jean-Michel Jarre, you're certain to gain some enjoyment listening to a huge array of new synth artists creating new tracks with a distinctly 80s or retro vibe. I have only recently discovered the scene, but I adore it, and it has opened up a whole new world of music for me. As much as I enjoy listening to the original 80s synth artists over and over again, I was in urgent need of something new, but with a familiar sound. Something that isn't going to induce a headache or force me to watch scantily-clad ladies slut-dropping, twerking, or whatever else it is they do these days - synthwave fits the bill perfectly!
This track by Miami Nights 1984 (A.K.A. Michael Glover) is just one fine example of synthwave. Don't be put off by the bizarre opening, you will soon experience a more familiar sound.
Please don't miss the video at the top of the page which includes over two hours of gorgeous retro electro music.
OUTLAND LONDON 2017 | Live Synthwave, DJs & Film
Here is an upcoming event I would like to mention. In celebration of the Blade Runner 2049 film release a week later, OUTLAND SYNTHWAVE EVENTS hosts it’s inaugural Synthwave | Outrun | Retro 80s | Sci-fi party extravaganza at The Grand in London on Friday 29 September 2017 - 7pm to 2am.
Event organiser Stuart McClaren told me that "it is a single evening, full immersion event, showcasing some of the best Synthwave/Retrowave music live, followed by DJs and a party. We will begin the evening with a showing of the film DRIVE on our huge 24 ft screen, and are expecting between 600 and 1000 people."