Post Punk & New Wave

post punk, new wave

Before I begin I bet some will ask, what the hell has post punk & New Wave got in common?  This is where I will explain as best as I can to you so can better understand the transition of the two genres.  Many other bands who were regarded as post-punk never actually moved over to new wave, but transitioned into a heavier or darker type of music genre.

Sadly for many of these bands in the two music categories mentioned, they did not last long or they produced a few good songs but it never developed any further.  For the ones that got left behind, it was the popularity of New Wave when Post Punk faded out that would be a deciding factor over their demise, some bands switched or put some influence into their music, some of them went on to be successful for many years.

Without any further ado, let’s begin with Post Punk.

History of Post Punk

Post punk is a genre that developed from the dwindling punk rock era.  It began its roots in 1977 with a claim by many from the era that Siouxsie & The Banshees were officially the first post-punk band to emerge from the scene.  It certainly was not popular at the current time, many bands were signed to independent labels that were just beginning.

Many of these independent labels started as a response to the now dwindling original punk scene.  It was an interesting time, the original punk scene was mainly focused on pure rock, whereas post-punk was a broader option, allowing bands & artists to express their music using other influences such as funk, avant-garde, dub, jazz, art pop including a few more.

Post punk was more popular in the United Kingdom & America.  Talking Heads were perhaps regarded as probably the ones who had the best success from the period.  The UK, however… it’s pretty hard to nail down who had the best success as many of the acts from the era moved on to great success as post-punk and new wave.

If a band had to be named, it would probably be U2.  They began their music careers during the post-punk period, but changed their style slightly over the years.  However, they still play today, a testament to a band’s longevity.

Post-punk had a pretty good shelf life though.  Signs of the music genre began dwindling began around the early-mid eighties when many bands moved over to a commercial sound, mainly down to the fact that these bands or artists were now signed to big record labels.  As everyone should know, the music industry is a fickle business and to survive you must adapt or die.  Once your fan base falls below a standard, you were abandoned before you knew it.

post punk
Post Punk is still alive today.

Which moves us on to the next subject….

History of New Wave

New Wave started around the same time as post-punk.  It was more popular in the USA than the UK but many bands from the post-punk era adapted or switched over to this form of music by the eighties.  This was largely down to the commercial success as it was more popular in the charts at the time.

New Wave in the UK was named under a few sub-genres as it was not really well documented to use the term New Wave, instead using terms such as synthpop, electronic etc but its still new wave.

New Wave used synthesisers rather than sticking to pure guitars & drums but if you listen to some music from the post-punk era there is evidence of synthesisers being used, you could say that post-punk and New Wave was kind of being merged together naturally to give the final New Wave sound.

New Wave began dying around the mid-eighties.  Again, as with post-punk, bands were either fading away or changing their style to keep up with the times.  Bands & artists came and went, but few survived to last a lot longer.

new wave
Siouxsie & the Banhees. Perhaps one of the most successful bands to survive post punk & new wave & beyond.

Post-Punk & New Wave Today

The sound of post-punk and new wave is very much evident today.  Many new artists have some influence in their music from the genre.  It is perhaps regarded as the most successful yet from all the other types of music from the time.

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