1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis: LP's.

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japan
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1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis: LP's.

Post by japan » Mon Nov 08, 2010 8:51 pm

1980-2010: 30 years since 1980, the beginning of a golden age for synthesis.

It's not a secret that my favourite LP's from the 80's are from the band Japan, Gentlemen Take Polaroids (launched in november of 1980) and Tin Drum. These albums are the main reason to love synthesizers like Oberheim OB-X, that I own, Sequential Circuits Prophet-5, Moog Micromoog, Roland System 700, among others.

Duran Duran: Duran Duran self titled album and RIO, without a doubt, two of the greatest lp's from the 80's. Two reasons to love Roland Jupiter 4 and 8, but I can't forget the 'lucky synth" of the band, the Crumar Performer, although it was a string machine mainly. I bought a Crumar because of 'that' sound, really a Duran Duran trademark.

Human League: I like a lot the 70's albums, but talking about 80's, Dare is THE lp. Jupiter 4 ("the Jupiter 4 will be tatooed on my heart for ever", Phil Oakley), maybe Korg 700 and 770, don't know...

John Foxx: Metamatics was an album that saw the light of the day in 1980, and put the ARP Odyssey in my map. I love the album and the Odyssey, and this LP is a really big classic from the early 80's.

Depeche Mode: Roland and EMU, two brands that can describe the sound of Depeche Mode from the 80's, among others. Speak and Spell, a Broken Frame, Construction Time Again, Some Great Reward...It seems that there's not a bad LP from DM in the 80's. Emulator, Emax, Jupiter 4,Jupiter 8, etc.

Maaany other Lp's, but I'm lazy and don't wanna write anymore... :?

What are your favourite LP'S and synths from the 80's?
Last edited by japan on Tue Nov 09, 2010 6:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis: L

Post by redchapterjubilee » Mon Nov 08, 2010 9:36 pm

Gee, that could take up hours for me to list them all! The 80s were the decade of the synthesizer, although of course the 1970s could also lay about as much claim to it as the 80s could.
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Re: 1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis: L

Post by rschnier » Tue Nov 09, 2010 4:37 am

Definite +1 on Duran Duran, Depeche Mode, Human League.

Also, how about --

Thomas Dolby. "She Blinded Me with Science" was a groundbreaker and the Linn Drum's coming-out party. Nothing else had sounded like that before.

Howard Jones. "New Song" from his debut album was overplayed so much it got sickening, but his next two albums Dream Into Action and One To One are iconic. The remake of "No One Is To Blame" (bleh version on Dream Into Action) at the end of One To One completely transformed the song, drum programming courtesy of Phil Collins.

Cyndi Lauper. Yeah, it was pop, but great synth work. "All Through The Night" on Lauper's debut album was such a great usage of the arpeggiator that it makes the hair on the back of my neck stand on end just playing the song in my head right now.

Missing Persons. Chuck Wild did some great synth work especially on their debut, Spring Session M. Very underrated.

I find it amusing that "guitar bands" have been at the forefront for, what, 20 years now? Nothing against guitars, but it seems like some new sonic textures should be coming back around by now....
Last edited by rschnier on Thu Nov 11, 2010 3:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis:

Post by vin14 » Tue Nov 09, 2010 1:43 pm

Favourite LPs from the era featuring synths.
Here's 10 that spring to mind.
Ultravox - Vienna
Duran Duran - Duran Duran
Duran Duran - Rio
John Foxx - Metamatic
Kraftwerk - Computer World
Depeche Mode - Black Celebration
A flock of seagulls - A flock of seagulls
Vangelis - Blade Rummer Soundtrack
The Cars - Heartbreak City
Nine inch nails - Pretty hate machine

I'd also add the following from the late 70s
Tubeway Army - Replicas
Japan - Quiet Life
Kraftwerk - The Man Machine

Favourite synths.
If we're talking about ones used on the records mentioned above, I'd say the obvious ones ARP Odyssey, Minimoog, Jupiter 8, Prophet 5, CS80.
If we're talking ones I own / have used, it would probably be the Juno 106.
At the moment the one I covet is an OBXa (or OB8)

It would be interesting to compile a list of singles rather than albums.
Mine wouldn't exactly reflect each other.

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Re: 1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis: L

Post by Micke » Tue Nov 09, 2010 3:56 pm

rschnier wrote:
Cyndi Lauper. Yeah, it was pop, but great synth work by Eric Bazilian (gotta love that name!) and Rob Hyman, who later went on to form The Hooters. "All Through The Night" on Lauper's debut album was such a great usage of the arpeggiator that it makes the hair on the back of my neck stand on end just playing the song in my head right now.

Missing Persons. Chuck Wild did some great synth work especially on their debut, Spring Session M. Very underrated.
As far as Cyndi Lauper's She's So Unusual album is concerned, most of the synth work was done by Richard Termini
(Oberheim 2-voice and Prophet 5 rev 3) and Peter Wood (Memorymoog). Rob Hyman had bought a Juno-60 for the recording
sessions (he had seen Termini playing his synths at the Pennsylvania rehearsals where Rob himself played organ and electric piano) and it did make it on to some of the songs; it was used for the arpeggiating solo on "All through the night" (triggered by a Linndrum) and for the main synth part on "Time after time", doubled with Peter Wood's Memorymoog.

Chuck Wild used an Oberheim OB-X and Minimoog on Missing Persons' debut album.
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Re: 1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis:

Post by krzeppa » Tue Nov 09, 2010 5:02 pm

vin14 wrote:Favourite LPs from the era featuring synths.
Kraftwerk - Computer World
Depeche Mode - Black Celebration
Vangelis - Blade Rummer Soundtrack
Nine inch nails - Pretty hate machine
These are all in my list of favorites as well.
I also like Front 242 Backcatalogue (love U-Men and Don't Crash)
Pet Shop Boys - Please
....there are really just too many to name though.

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Re: 1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis: L

Post by balma » Tue Nov 09, 2010 5:59 pm

The happiest period of my life. I was truly seduced by the synthesizer sound of the 80ies.

I also can say, the 80ies was the most productive decade of the pop music. So GOOD artists, so much creativity on

the 80ies!!!!!

Also, the gold age of the MTV video, along with the 90ies. Every band wanted to have a video on MTV.

And there's so,so much awesome synth on 80ies pop, that 100 pages of thread would not make justice to them.


I'll start with ANIMOTION:

the sounds on the this track, specially the reverse bridge, have influenced me for the rest of my l


Where the f**k are the electronic tom drums when we need them the most!!!!


please, I beg you, post POP SYNTH videos from the 80oes with TOM DRUMS!!!


Here's Billy Ocean, with LOVERBOY....

cheesy video as h**l, but I can't avoid it, I love it:




there comes, La isla bonita, from Madonna.

MADONA is all over present during the 80ies, and 90ies. Her music has always been the best of pop, impossible to
deny such fantastic talent. Synths on la isla bonita are discrete but present all over the track.





For my taste, this is the maybe the most awesome electronic track that have reached the boards. Relax is pure

awesome. Great sound engineering (Jupiter?)

The combination of the kick and bass, with the white noise explosions... this song has such amazing

best of the best. I remember that gay video

GOD BLESS FRANKIE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD





When you see all these music, and other thousand tracks from 80/90ies, you realize about the true contribution

of the synthesizer to the modern music, and wonder, why still so unknown to masses, if the synthesizer, is the coolest

musical instrument ever made. Not a single doubt about it.

Makes me feel so proud and lucky.

oh!!!

I forgot:

His sex dungeons are rumored to hold hundreds of people in secret locations around the world.
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Re: 1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis: L

Post by japan » Tue Nov 09, 2010 7:55 pm

I should add the next albums:

Michael Jackson: Thriller ( Synclavier, CS80, Jupiter 8,Prophet 5, Minimoog, Emulator I), and Bad ( he had to be used some of the mentioned synths on the album surely ).

Prince: Dirty Mind, Controversy, 1999, Purple Rain ( the beginning of 'Let's go Crazy' is pure OB-X...lovely). OB-X, Oberheim 2 or 4 voices maybe, and the beloved LM-1 Drum Computer and LinnDrumm, among others.

Alphaville: Forever Young (Jupiter 8, Arp Odyssey maybe)

New Order: Low-Life and Technique.

Talk Talk: It's my Life

Eurythmics: Sweet Dreams
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Re: 1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis: L

Post by aXL » Wed Nov 10, 2010 3:20 pm

japan wrote:Talk Talk: It's my Life
I want to put in a good word for TT's much-maligned debut The Party's Over. OK, so it's much more commercial and imitative than everything else they've done, but you cannot take away the fact that the tracks in themselves are top-notch, and - let's face it - you set Mark Hollis to sing a song, it's already set apart from run-of-the-mill synthpop. And seriously, if the album is such a Duran rehash as people claim, how do you explain tracks like "Have You Heard The News", or "Candy", or even the darkly bitter stab at fashion that is "Mirror Man"?

Oh, and I'd like to pull out the early-to-mid-'80s output of our friendly neighbourhood Berliners in Tangerine Dream. Basically, the entire catalogue of the Froese/Franke/Schmoelling era. Lots of grand work there (listening to the title track of Exit as I'm writing this), even with their stylistic shift.
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Re: 1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis: L

Post by Esus » Wed Nov 10, 2010 3:47 pm

What?!?! No one's mentioning:

Nik Kershaw (Wix was awesome--saw him with McCartney recently)
Scritti Politti (should be a shoo-in)
Pseudo Echo
Thompson Twins (I know, I know, but the synth work was pretty cool)
Ebn-Ozn (Ebn made a Fairlight fly--see Scritti Politti)
Yaz/Yazoo/Alison Moyet solo stuff
Blue Nile--the guys who put Roger Linn on the map

...and the list goes on and on...

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Re: 1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis: L

Post by I12 » Wed Nov 10, 2010 4:35 pm

Dont bother its not worth it!

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Re: 1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis: L

Post by iProg » Wed Nov 10, 2010 9:44 pm

Duran Duran and Scritti Politti made my favorite 80's albums.

I never get tired of 80's music. 1980 is a favorite year of mine.

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Re: 1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis: L

Post by krzeppa » Wed Nov 10, 2010 10:30 pm

Esus wrote: Pseudo Echo
...and the list goes on and on...
Funny you mention them because we were considering doing an industrial cover of "His Eyes." I loved Pseudo Echo, and I think they were very underrated.

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Re: 1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis: L

Post by stephen » Wed Nov 10, 2010 10:41 pm

I like Jarre's Magnetic Fields (no, really!) and Concerts in China. I have that one on video too.
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Re: 1980-2010: 30 years since the golden age of synthesis: L

Post by rschnier » Thu Nov 11, 2010 4:23 am

stephen wrote:I like Jarre's Magnetic Fields (no, really!) and Concerts in China. I have that one on video too.
Magnetic Fields / Les Chants Magnetiques is my favorite Jarre album -- I just happened to listen to it earlier today! For a long time the album version wasn't available on CD...so I had to digitize my vinyl LP :geek:

BTW Micke -- thanks for correcting and expanding on the info about who played what on She's So Unusual.

This thread is reminding me how much I miss this period. At least there's still great new synth work being put out by the Trance/Electro folks. Hooray for satellite radio! (e.g. Sirius 38 / XM 80 "Area") My wife hates it when I'm driving and get to pick the station :lol:
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