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ASV Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: Like, Oh My God, it's the 80's!

Looking at the track listing to Grosse Point Blank - and judging from responses to all these categories, plus several other times I've mentioned it here - you people love your new wave. Which is a good thing, as I love new wave, too.
So, yes. We are now going with the wide-open, generic categories of Best New Wave Band/Artis AND Best New Wave song. First, we shall define and set some parameters.

New wave is not punk. The Clash, Blondie, etc. are punk. If a band was defined as punk first, they don't count for this category. We're talking synthesizers and funny hair, here. Skinny ties. 12 inch dance remixes. Mostly 80's bands (though some did get their start as early as 1976) and only through about 1986 at that.

New wave covers a variety of sub genres including goth (Bauhaus, early Cure), synthpop (Depeche Mode, Soft Cell), and the new wave brand of Ska (Madness, the Specials). It goes from the Cars to Duran Duran, from Killing Joke to the Violent Femmes. (see here for more details on this). When you think new wave, you think Flock of Seagulls and Split Enz. You might also think New Order and Joy Division, Ultravox and the Boomtown Rats. There are literally thousands of new wave bands and songs to choose from. I, for one, don't think I could even narrow it down to one in this category, as this genre by far takes up the most room in my CD collection and I could go on about these songs and artists forever. But that's what you're here for. To do the choosing for me.

For further reference:

My favorite new wave songs
The punk v. new wave discussion
Punk v. new wave part II

For those unsure about the specificaitons, please click on the links provided in the post before you cast your vote to get some ideas and to make sure you are staying within the category. The artist thing is wide open, but for the song, try to pick one that really defines the new wave movement for you. You can vote for both categories or just one, doesn't matter. So, to reiterate:


I'll be right over here, going through my twelve inch remix vinyl and reminsicing about the nights dancing to Steven "Tin Tin" Duffy's Kiss Me on top of a speaker in a night club called Spit. I'll also upload some choice songs for you later.


The post punk/new wave lines seem to be mixed in the eyes of a lot of folks and some bands went through periods of both genres. Anyway, my favs are ....

New Order - Blue Monday, Bizzare Love Triangle and Sub-Culture.

The Cure - In Between Days , The Baby Screams, Close to me.

The Fixx - Saved By Zero, Reach the Beach, One Thing Leads to Another

Maybe someone can tell me where the Cars fit in?

Best New Wave Band (I'm going to stay away from goth nominees, like Bauhaus, The Cure, and Siouxsie and the Banshees, because I kind of think they need their own category):

This is a tough one, as I'm tempted to nominate The B-52s, Depeche Mode, and The Violent Femmes. But in my heart of hearts, if I'm going to choose among those three, it's going to be The B-52s. I think.

Best New Wave Song:

OK, the one song that I love and really defines New Wave for me. I guess I'm going to have to go with "Who Needs Love Like That" by Erasure.

The Cars are totally new wave.

Lol, I have never even heard of the bloody movie and it wins the award? WTF?

Best new wave band: Duran Duran.
Bubbling under: the Cars

Best New Wave Band - Depeche Mode. They STILL kick all the ass, their concerts are amazing, and their music just keeps getting better.

Still smile every time I hear "Our House" by Madness,the video was hilarious to me.
And then there is one of my fave really bad movies that doesn't really hold up well but is still fun to watch in that car-wreck kind of way:
"Liqud Sky"
The dark-side of New-Wave

Depeche Mode, The Squeeze, Duran Duran, The Cars, all have my vote.

Best New Wave Song:

---> Cars - Gary Numan
---> You Spin Me Right 'Round - Dead or Alive

Best New Wave Band:

--> Duran Duran
--> KajaYngwieMalmstein

Best New Wave Song:
Girls on Film - Duran Duran
Tainted Love - Soft Cell

Best New Wave Band:
Duran Duran

hmm Duran Duran tops it, for being my favorite, but Ultravox was a really rad band, too. And Squeeze. but wine is all i have.

Modern English
Men at Work

Well, we've got to find a place for Devo somewhere. How about here?

Best New Wave Band/Tune:

The Pretenders/The Middle of the Road

Heh, every time someone brings up Depeche Mode, all I can think about is Andy Partridge's quote when he was asked why XTC didn't play live concerts. "It's not like we're Depeche Mode, we don't just jump onstage and push a bloody button!".

For the record, I don't consider Squeeze to be new wave, They were pop, really really good pop, but I'd put them more in the same genre with Joe Jackson. My biggest dilemma is whether to consider XTC new wave. I don't think I will.

Also, New Order/Joy Division were part of the Manchester invasion and not, IMHO, new wave. It would be difficult for me to lump New Order/Happy Mondays/The Charlatans UK in the same pile as Haircut 100 and ABC.

So, with those objections:

Best New Wave Band:
Psychedelic Furs
Duran Duran
Missing Persons

Best New Wave Song:
All That Money Wants - Psychedelic Furs
Million Miles Away - The Plimsouls
Stand and Deliver - Adam and the Ants

Oh yeah, one other song I can't believe I left out:

Lips Like Sugar - Echo and the Bunnymen

Best New Wave Song: Tainted Love, Soft Cell

Band/Artist? Duran Duran. Arena rock and ego in a new wave package. Great live too.

Matt, I've done a lot of research on the subject and the music historians consider all those bands new wave. If you don't want to consider them, fine, but for all intents and purposes, they are allowed to be included in these nominations.

if we're going to split hairs, duran duran and adam and the ants were more New Romantic than New Wave.

I mean, i have a hard time calling the Plimsouls new wave, to me they were a straight rock band. But, whatever turns your crank. People call the Gun Club a punk band.. again, the crank thing.

There will be no splitting of hairs here. If Matt wants to be all pedantic, that's his problem. This is MY Hall of Fame and I say the category is wide open for interpretation, but you should peruse the links above.

I understand, not trying to start a debate, just personal opinion. At least people aren't nominating Ska bands.

Ultimate song- Toss up between Tainted Love and Gary Neuman Cars.

Ultimate band, I have to go with Duran Duran. I'd be betraying myself if I didn't.

I'll Melt with You, Tainted Love for songs

New Wave is the heart and soul of my music collection. Everything from one hit wonders like Ice House (Electric Blue) and T'Pau (Heart & Soul) to groups still going strong today like Duran Duran and The Pet Shop Boys. Overall I'd have a really hard time choosing just one great band and one great song but since that's what Michele has asked for, that's what I must do.

My nominees are;

Best New Wave Band:
This was tough but no other New Wave group has as many songs as Erasure that you can be sure will get people at a party to dance. From Victim of Love to Oh Lamour to A Little Respect, we all know them and we all know we'll dance to them.

Best New Wave Song:
Blue Monday - New Order
What can I say? You could go with "Obsession" or "Tainted Love" or any number of other songs, but for me and those I hang with, Blue Monday will always be the epitome of New Wave's awesomeness. Come on, sing it with me... "Every time I see you falling I get down on my knees and pray..."

I second "Cars" by Gary Numan for best song.

You count Split Enz as New Wave ? In that case, they have to get my vote.

Best New Wave Single: The biggest selling 12 inch single in history has to get that one - Blue Monday by New Order.

(Geekman: those lyrics at the end of your post are from "Bizarre Love Triangle" not "Blue Monday")

Violent Femmes are the best!

Geekman, Frank is right. That's totally Bizarre Love Triangle. Blue Monday is "How does it feel. To treat me like you do. When you have your hands upon me. And told me who you are."

Rushes to turn on iTunes and play the New Order.

Although, really, if we're talking New Order songs, where's the love for Temptation?

I just came in here to say that the best New Order song is Temptation, hands down.

Oh you've got green eyes...

When Depeche Mode comes to mind, I think of easy chicks, because anyone who walked around wearing a Violator shirt was guaranteed to get laid by the proto-goth chicks in our school. Life was good,

Still, I'd have to bite the bullet and say Duran Duran was the best New Wave band of the 80's, if only because of Girls on Film, the best video of the time. For me, New Wave is synonymous with the MTV I grew up with and I can't think of a song without its video immediately playing in my head. Duran Duran had the best videos and they didn't sound too bad, either.

The best New Wave song is West End Girls by the Pet Shop Boys.


I wrote the wrong lyrics! I humbly ask forgiveness of those who corrected my flagrantly foul quote. I was listening to one song while writing about another and the two became one in my mind. I am sorry.


a vote for depeche mode here.

New Order
Depeche Mode
The Cars

OK. Here are a slew of favorites, in no particular order:

Obsession - Animotion
AEIOU and Sometimes Y - EBN OZN
Men Without Hats - Safety Dance
Under The Milky Way - The Church
Look of Love - ABC
Dear God - XTC
Just Another Day - Oingo Boingo
Love Will Tear Us Apart - Joy Division
People Are People - Depeche Mode
Half a Person - The Smiths
Every Little Counts - New Order
Ball of Confusion - Love and Rockets
Who Needs Love (Like That)- Erasure
China Girl - David Bowie
She Sells Sanctuary - The Cult
The Globe - Big Audio Dynamite
Stand and Deliver - Adam and the Ants

But if I'm going to have to vote for just one, it'd be Look of Love for the song (although Safety Dance, especially with that trippy video, comes close), and New Order for the band.

Along with the many fine nominees previously listed I'm going to toss the obligatory new wave ska band in: The English Beat.

In addition I'd add a hastily considered top 5 new wave bands:

The Replacements
The Jam
Split Endz
Too Much Joy

There would definitely be songs from each of those bands on my best song list. If I had to choose just one song from that six-pack of bands I'm not sure that I could. Most likely it would come down to a choice between Split Endz "History Never Repeats" and TMJ's "Crush Story."

Having heard a live version with Finn and special guest Eddie Vedder, I'd probably go with "History Never Repeats."


Question: Where do Joy Division fit in your categorisation ? If they go into New Wave, then I have to nominate both "Love Will Tear Us Apart Again" and almightly awesome manic depressives best friend "Dead Souls".

They have to be nominated for best band too. As much as I love Split Enz (I Got You was the first record I ever bought), Joy Division just edges them if they fit into this category.

Michele, Michele, Michele.... You can't just leave out fac 50! The Him is THE best New Order tune ever. This is not up to discussion. lol

Everytime I see the words "The HIM" I'm reminded of that stupid faux goth band and how every teenager this side of Hot Topic assures everyone else of their darkness by wearing The HIM's visage on their shirts, hats, ass, whatever.

sorry... By the way, the real deal about New Wave is that the new wave kids were in fact the ones who became Punk after the Teddy's and Mods. So, Punk is New Wave and vise-versa.

Loverboy - "The Kid is Hot Tonight" or "Working for the Weekend"

I can't pick a "best" New Wave band since, while some were entertaining, most that I'd file under that category would be cross-filed under "Must be Destroyed."

And Kevin? How the hell can you consider The Jam? "In the City," "Going Underground," and "Tube Station," to name a few, to me takes them out of consideration. They might not have been a straight-up punk band, but a guitar, bass and drums plus plenty of anger does not meet the basic New Wave paradigm. I always had the impression Weller and his sidekicks would beat the crap out of bands like Adam and the Ants just on general principles if given half a chance.

This is too hard, but since they haven't been mentioned already (at least on this thread):

Tears for Fears - Change

Simple Minds - Love Song

The Chameleons - Second Skin (or almost anything else from 'Script of a bridge')

This Mortal Coil - Song to the Siren

Modern English - I Melt with You

Orchestral Manoeuvers in the Dark - Enola Gay

Ultravox - Vienna

Bronski Beat - Smalltown Boy

Once upon a time (speaking of 'Boy'), U2 was considered New Wave, but ...