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Music

The Alarm Get Anthemic on "Ghosts of Rebecca's" Soaring Folk-Rock (premiere)

Welsh "new wave" band the Alarm return with a folk-rock anthem in "Ghosts of Rebecca" and a stirring new album, STREAM [Hurricane of Change].

Recent
Music

'Sell You Everything' Brings to Light Buzzcocks '1991 Demo LP' That Passed Under-the-Radar

Cherry Red Records' new box-set issued in memory of Pete Shelley gathers together the entire post-reunion output of the legendary Buzzcocks. Across the next week, PopMatters explores the set album-by-album. First up is The 1991 Demo LP.

Music

10 Key Tracks From the British Synthpop Boom of 1980

It's 40 years since the first explosion of electronic songs revitalized the UK charts with futuristic subject matter, DIY aesthetics, and occasionally pompous lyrics. To celebrate, here's a chronological list of those Moog-infused tracks of 1980 that had the biggest impact.

Music

The 1975's 'Notes on a Conditional Form' Is Laudably Thought-Provoking and Thrilling

The 1975 follow A Brief Inquiry... with an even more intriguing, sprawling, and chameleonic song suite. Notes on a Conditional Form shows a level of unquenchable ambition, creativity, and outspoken curiosity that's rarely felt in popular music today.

Reviews

Sparks Still Ignite with 'A Steady Drip, Drip, Drip'

After nearly 50 years and two dozen albums, Sparks continue their reign of resonantly quirky art pop-rock delights on A Steady Drip, Drip, Drip.

Love in the Time of Coronavirus

The Cure's "Seaside" Cure for Sheltering at Home

In these times of pandemic turmoil and outright trauma, what better match does the tempestuous human soul have than the sea? And what better lyricist than the Cure's Robert Smith, who twins the wrath (or sadness) of the sea with similar human emotions?

Music

The 50 Best Post-Punk Albums Ever: Part 3, Echo & the Bunnymen to Lizzy Mercier Descloux

This week we are celebrating the best post-punk albums of all-time and today we have part three with Echo & the Bunnymen, Cabaret Voltaire, Pere Ubu and more.

Music

Go-Go's Bassist Kathy Valentine Is on the "Write" Track After a Rock-Hard Life

The '80s were a wild and crazy time also filled with troubles, heartbreak and disappointment for Go-Go's bass player-guitarist Kathy Valentine, who covers many of those moments in her intriguing dual project that she discusses in this freewheeling interview.

Music

The Boomtown Rats' 'Citizens of Boomtown' Is a Failed Stab at Relevance

After listening to the Boomtown Rats' Citizens of Boomtown, you can't help but wonder if another vanity project is the kind of activism we need to combat the injustices of the world.

Music

La Roux Returns Without 'Supervision'

La Roux's Supervision is a testament to propelling forward, even if its sounds take you backward, and knowing that good synthpop will never go out of style.

Music

The Homesick Make a Big Noise on 'The Big Exercise'

Dutch post-punk, pop trio the Homesick blend a host of influences, from Scott Walker to Meredith Monk, in with their kaleidoscopic sound on their second album, The Big Exercise.

Music

The Revillos Reprise Their DayGlo Pop-Rock on ​'Compendium of Weird'

A collection of ragged rehearsal recordings, out-takes, and alternate versions that is actually worth the price of admission? The Revillos have pulled it off.

Music

Pet Shop Boys Deliver Another Glorious, Smart, and Relevant Pop Album with 'Hotspot'

Four decades in the music business is no small feat, and yet the Pet Shop Boys enter the new decade sounding just as current and catchy as the pop landscape they helped construct.

Books

Morris Day Gives the Reader a Funky Take on a Life in Funk with 'On Time'

Day built his everything on top of Prince's everything, and it's no secret. In his memoir, On Time, he channels the superstar to enjoyable effect.

Music

With a New Covers Project, Juliana Hatfield Sets Her Sights on the Police

Continuing her take on artist-themed covers albums, Juliana Hatfield takes a stab at the Police songbook, with unique, marvelous results.

Music

OMD at 40: Making Sense of a Synthpop Legacy

OMD's first three albums were crucial in the development of ambitious, intellectual, art-pop. They also led to the emergence of a whole generation of electronic pop groups that have continually influenced artists up to this day.

Events

New Order in Berlin: Timeless and Timely

In Berlin, dance-rock legends New Order prove once again why their music draws attention nearly 40 years on.

Music

Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark: Souvenir [40th Anniversary Box Set]

British synthpop pioneers, Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark mark 40 great years with a singles collection and vault-emptying box set.

Music

Metronomy Create Some of Their Best Music on ​​'Metronomy Forever'​​

Ranging in tone and style, Metronomy's Metronomy Forever feels like a spiritual successor to their second album Nights Out.

Music

Stereo Total Offer Dancing, Dreaming, and Drugs, with a Hint of "Da Da Da"

Eurotrash bargain basement new wave dance pop, with the occasional moody detour, is business as usual for Stereo Total, and business is good on Ah! Quel Cinéma!

Music

Prefab Sprout's Audacious Pop of 1984-92 Is Illuminated on Four Vinyl Re-issues

On remastered and reconfigured versions of Prefab Sprout LPs Swoon, From Langley Park to Memphis, Jordan: The Comeback, and A Life of Surprises, songs involving a chess grandmaster, Springsteen, Elvis, Jesse James, God and Lucifer get a deserved new lease of life.

Music

Ric Ocasek and the Cars: Just What We Needed

That mullet, those shades, the slender build, and his angular mug in those epic videos from the days when MTV ruled. The Cars' Ric Ocasek was the picture boy of '70s and '80s new wave / power pop.

Music

Synthpop Pioneer Fad Gadget's Music Is Finally Back in Release

The singular synth/industrial/performance art innovator and provocateur Fad Gadget influenced Depeche Mode and scores of others, but never really got his due.

Music

The B-52s 30-year Anniversary Re-Issue of 'Cosmic Thing' Keeps the Party Going

With Cosmic Thing, the B-52s launched into the big time, shooting up the national album and singles charts with "Channel Z", followed by "Love Shack" and "Roam".

Music

Bananarama Turn Up the 'Stereo' for Their First Album in 10 Years

British pop legends Bananarama return with their first new music in 10 years and they tell us about their latest work as well as their lengthy career that took off in the 1980s.

Music

The 100 Greatest Alternative Songs of the '80s

One of our most popular series ever, this 2015 list of the 1980s best "alternative" music has it all, from new wave to punk and post-punk to goth.

Music

Hero Worship: The B-52's Embrace Their Place in Rock History

To casual onlookers, they made for the best kind of disposable party pop. To their devoted fans, they were taboo-breaking new wave kingpins. Now, with four decades of history under their belt, the B-52's look back and take their bow. Cindy Wilson speaks to PopMatters about their legacy.

Evan Sawdey
Music

Minimal Compact Revisit Classic, "Statik Dancin'" (premiere)

Minimal Compact revisit classics from their past on new LP produced by Wire's Colin Newman. The sound capitalizes on the legendary group's live energy.

Music

'Birth of a Nation' Unearths a Trove of Music from the Liverpool Scene

Over three discs and four hours, Cherry Red Records does a deep dive into the output of Liverpool's Inevitable Records, home to Pete Wylie and Pete Burns, among many others.

Music

British Electro Band Guest Singer Release Video for "New Experience" (premiere + interview)

"New Experience" pairs Guest Singer's brand of new wave and intelligent electropop with an arresting typographic video from artist and designer Richard De Hoxar.

Music

Still Fun After All These Years: An Interview with Wang Chung

Wang Chung's Nick Feldman recalls making one of the band's biggest hits, working with one of film's greatest directors, and the future of Wang Chung itself.

Jedd Beaudoin
Film

Faceted Depictions of War: On Jan Němec's 'Diamonds of the Night' (Démanty noci)

Are fantasies mixed up with memories in Jan Němec's film adaptation of Arnošt Lustig's autobiographical story of surviving WWII, Diamonds of the Night (Démanty noci)? Will these babes forever be in the woods?

Events

Joe Jackson Celebrates 40 Years of Music in NYC Homecoming Show

Veteran British singer-songwriter Joe Jackson performed songs from his catalog and new album Fool.

Music

New Wave: Turning Rebellion into Money

If 1977 was New Wave's breakout year, by 1979 it had become an industry force, all but replacing punk as a viable vehicle or term of currency.

Music

Buzzcocks' 'Love Bites' Is an Uneven, But Worthwhile, Listen

Although the Buzzcocks were a singles band, their overlooked second album, Love Bites (1978), is still a solid effort, and it sounds better than ever on this reissue.

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