Pure '80s DVD: Totally New Wave (Music DVD)

Pure '80s DVD: Totally New Wave (Music DVD)
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Pure '80s DVD: Totally New Wave (Music DVD)

About this item

The Pure '80s CD series collected some of the biggest hits of the big-hair-and-spandex era of excess, so it was natural to spin the brand off into DVD releases as well. Pure '80s DVD: Totally New Wave compiles 15 promotional videos from many of the genre's defining acts from 1979 to 1987. Generally speaking, this was new wave's heyday. New wave generated plenty of one-hit wonders (a few managed to chart two or three hits) but these token singles were instantly memorable and became classics over time. Appropriately, this DVD kicks off with the Buggles' "Video Killed the Radio Star" because it's the answer to an eternal trivia question: what was the first video MTV played when it started broadcasting on August 1, 1981? (It should be noted that the song was released in 1979.) New wave and MTV are synonymous. One couldn't have fully succeeded without the other. The music business was suffering greatly at the time, and one commonly accepted reason for this was that kids were spending their money on video games at the arcade instead of records and tapes at the record store. New wave artists had flashy images and made surreal videos perfect for this visual promotional medium. Two of the most important videos here are Duran Duran's "Hungry Like the Wolf," which was one of the first with a respectable budget to depict a band in exotic locales, and a-ha's "Take on Me," which featured breathtaking animation. (Duran Duran's sudden success in early markets whose cable television systems were wired with MTV is now part of industry legend.) They are great videos -- and great songs, period -- that demonstrate how a story line could be followed that had little or nothing to do with the song's lyrics. Three videos here that are at least loosely based on the lyrics are Joe Jackson's "Steppin' Out" (from his New York City-inspired album Night and Day), Madness' chuckle-inducing "Our House," and ABC's "When Smokey Sings" (a tribute to Smokey Robinson). As for rarities, this DVD includes the banned original version of Frankie Goes to Hollywood's "Relax," which is set in a gay bar and loaded with S&M imagery. Other featured videos -- each with its own charm -- are Devo's "Whip It," Blondie's "Rapture," Soft Cell's "Tainted Love," the Fixx's "One Thing Leads to Another," Men Without Hats' "The Safety Dance," Big Country's "In a Big Country," and Bananarama's "Cruel Summer." With the exception of "Video Killed the Radio Star," which barely grazed the Top 40 at number 40, all of the aforementioned songs were huge hit singles. That makes the Plimsouls' "A Million Miles Away" the odd man out on the DVD because it only rose to number 82. Pure '80s DVD: Totally New Wave includes informative liner notes and credits. It's far from comprehensive or definitive -- where's Gary Numan's "Cars" or A Flock of Seagulls' "I Ran (So Far Away)," for example? -- but it will bring nostalgia-fueled smiles to the faces of anybody who listened to Top 40 radio or watched MTV at the time. ~ Bret Adams, All Music Guide

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Artist: Various Artists - General
Studio Label: DVD
Edited: N
Format: CD
Enhanced: N
Number of Discs: 1
Shipping Weight (in pounds): 0.2
Product in Inches (L x W x H): 0.5 x 5.5 x 7.44
UPC: 0060249840653
1. Pure '80s DVD: Totally New Wave (Music DVD)

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