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Who doesn’t love New Wave? It was the soundtrack of the 80s! With their overuse of synthesizers, the gated reverb, and high-pitched vocals, New Wave reigns immortal in the hearts of 80s and even 90s kids. The New Wave genre came about when people started to get sick of the blues and the rock ‘n’ roll of the 70s. Thus, this new “futuristic” genre of music was created to showcase new instruments, hence the term New Wave.

If you loved the New Wave tunes of the 80s, there’s no doubt you’ll also love its revival. Today’s modern New Wave acts combine nostalgia for the 80s with a crisp new sound that you’re sure to love.


You’ve probably heard one of his most popular songs (Nightcall) from the movie Drive. Kavinsky is a French musician, producer, and DJ whose unique sound instantly brought him Hollywood fame. The great thing about Kavinsky is that he created a persona whose life unfolds through his songs. Kavinsky, the character, is a man who crashes his car in the 80s and comes back to life in 2006 as a zombie. If that doesn’t add a fascinating quirk to his music, we don’t know what will!

Nation of Language

This New York band mixes the New Wave sound of the 80s with a modern twist. From the first guitar chord until the drums kick in, you might think you’re listening to a throwback song. However, once you’re greeted with the vocals, you’ll realize that you’re listening to a newer New Wave band. Nation of Language frequently rubs elbows with other New Wave of New Wave bands such as The Strokes and The Wombats.

Franz Ferdinand

Hands down, you can’t talk about modern New Wave without mentioning this legendary band. This Scottish rock band mixes a bit of indie rock with dance-rock, but they sound so New Wave thanks to Alex Kapranos’ distinct vocals. The band released their latest studio album, Always Ascending, in 2018. It’s proof that the band still engages in playful experimentation that mixes genres yet remains true to their original sound.


Interpol creates tunes that might make you think they’re 30 years to late to the New Wave game. However, despite their staccato bass and snare-heavy mix, they still draw in more listeners with every single they release. The band’s latest album, Marauder, was released last 2018. The verdict? It’s like they’re frozen in time, in the best way possible.

Refresh your love for New Wave music by checking out these modern bands!