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Meet the New Wave, Same As the Old Wave

Dr. Spin looks a the 'new' New Wave and relives his formidable years.

by Dr. Spin
May 16, 2005

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Meet the New Wave, Same As the Old Wave
Dr Spin,
The song that Beth was looking for is called "Ooh La La" from the album When We Were the New Boys.
Dear Anonymous Tipster,
Ah, so that explains it. "Ooh La La" is actually a song Rod Stewart originally recorded back when he was a member of the Faces. The version on When We Were the New Boys is Stewart re-cording some of his classics. Beth, if she still reads my column, will be glad to know.
Dr Spin,

What are your thoughts on New Wave? I can see a resurgence in 80's electro in many modern bands, such as Interpol, the Killers, and the Bravery, amongst many others. I would say that Duran Duran were at the forefront of the synth-pop movement, followed closely by New Order, Depeche Mode and the Pet Shop Boys. Were you ever a fan? What do you think of the new crop of 80's influenced bands?

As always, keep up the good work. I read your column religiously.

Best regards,

Mir Raza
New York, New York
Dear Mir,
My take on the new "New Wave" is, why reinvent the wheel? Back in the early 90's there seemed to be a lot of bands trying to imitate the psychedelic sounds of the 60's bands (the Stone Roses, the Soup Dragons, etc.,) but the bands of the 90's at least distinguished their sound enough not to confuse listeners to think they were actually listening to a band of the 60's (perhaps technological advances made that impossible). Bands such as Franz Ferdinand, the Killers and Bravery sound so much like 80's New Wave, they seem irrelevant.
True New Wave lived only a short time, from about 1979 to about 1984. I would classify the Pet Shop Boys and Duran Duran as late-comers. Bands like Blondie, Berlin, the Police, and the Cars I would more likely call the forerunners of New Wave. At the risk of dating myself, the original New Wave was a little before my time, and I was into more pop-rock bands like Men At Work and Pat Benatar than the core New Wave groups. I do remember asking my older brothers who did "sending out an S.O.S." (the Police's "Message in a Bottle"), so I guess you could say I was a marginal fan.
Dr Spin,

You should read some Freud, and realize that your brain can be filled up with lots of things you don't want there! We all have a subconscious part!

Anyway, I'm a fan of frontward music and Rock n Roll. :o)


ALE, Necochea,
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Dear ALE,
Freud? What band was he in?
I realize that our brain subconsciously sucks up a lot of needless information; this is why I can still recall commercial jingles from my childhood and why I know every "Brady Bunch" episode by heart (do people in Argentina know about "The Brady Bunch?")
I have always hated Culture Club, yet I could sing along to just about every one of their hits. Why? Because somehow they've all seeped into my subconscious, so that any given moment someone could trigger their memory, and I'll suddenly see Boy George waving his hands back and forth on the back of a steamboat, like in the video for "Karma Chameleon."
Music like this is dangerous enough at face value; there is no need for subliminal messages.

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