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1980s

Desolation Center (Trailer)

Desolation Center (Trailer)

Burning Man, Lollapalooza, and Coachella owe their existence to a series of 1980s guerrilla punk rock events in the California desert. Stuart Swezey’s documentary combines interviews of punk and post-punk luminaries with performances by Sonic Youth, Minutemen, Meat Puppets, Perry Farrell, and more. Drops 9/13/19.

Nintendo’s Weirdest Moments

Nintendo’s Weirdest Moments

When you make games that are as whimsical in nature as Nintendo, you’re bound to have some weird moments over the years. Nintendo fan Shiromi edited together a reel of some of the wackiest things that have happened to Mario, Link, and Kid Icarus and others over the years. Man, the 1990s were a strange time.

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Boombox Lunchbox

Boombox Lunchbox

Celebrate the sounds of the 1980s every time you sit down to eat lunch, with Toynk’s playful tin lunchbox that looks like a squatty little boombox. It’s got lots of neat little details, like embossed speaker grilles, VU meters, and faux inputs on the side. We suggest keeping a small Bluetooth speaker inside for added effect.

Max Headroom Meets Rutger Hauer

Max Headroom Meets Rutger Hauer

Back in 1986, the iconic “digital” character Max Headroom (actor Matt Frewer) would interview various celebs on his short-lived talk show. In this classic gem, he spoke with actor Rutger Hauer, who was at the peak of his career after memorable roles in Blade Runner and Ladyhawke.

Stranger Things Film References

Stranger Things Film References

(Spoilers, Gore) Stranger Things creators Ross and Matt Duffer sat down with Wired to walk through some of the many references to 1980s science fiction, horror, and adventure movies peppered throughout the series. While some, like E.T. and Alien, are obvious, others, like Altered States are a little more subtly integrated.

The Art of Atari

The Art of Atari

If you grew up in the ’70s or ’80s, there’s not much more iconic than the box art from classic Atari games. Authors Robert V. Conte and Tim Lapetino explore the history of videogaming’s great forefather, and the artists and creative process behind these now classic works.

Retro iPhone Concept

Retro iPhone Concept

What might the iPhone have been like had it followed in the footsteps of Apple’s 1980s industrial design? Future Punk envisions just that – along with a colorful 1990s take as well. Funny thing is, Apple did design a concept phone in the 1980s.

It’s Ok Bluetooth Cassette Recorder

It’s Ok Bluetooth Cassette Recorder

It’s been 40 years since the Sony Walkman first came on the scene, and since been supplanted by CDs, MP3s, and streaming. But if you’re craving that old cassette tape sound, NINM Lab’s portable player/recorder has Bluetooth 5.0, so you can wirelessly send its sounds to a speaker or headphones. Sadly it’s not stereo.

Wang Chung: Orchesography

Wang Chung: Orchesography

Musicians Jack Hues and Nick Feldman, better known as Wang Chung teamed up with the Prague Philharmonic Orchestra to record new, symphonic versions of their biggest hit songs, and we think they sound even better than the originals. They even shot new music videos for Everybody Have Fun Tonight and Dance Hall Days.

Floppy Cars

Floppy Cars

Some songs lend themselves better than others to being played by Paweł Zadrożniak’s Floppotron – a band made up of old mechanical computer hardware. We can think of no better fit than the synth-heavy, robotic sounds of Gary Numan’s 1979 hit Cars.

Retro Tech: Triple Tape Boombox

Retro Tech: Triple Tape Boombox

Techmoan dug up another relic of unusual tech from the 1980s, a boombox from Japanese electronics company National that sported not one or two tape decks, but three. It’s basically the “this one goes to 11” of cassette players. Also, once he cracked it open to perform some repairs, he discovered a mechanical nightmare.

’80s Video Game Commercials

’80s Video Game Commercials

Video game nerds, sit back, relax, and enjoy Dave Freeman’s hour-long commercial break featuring dozens of TV ads for classic games from Pac-Man to Space Invaders from the Atari 2600 to the Intellivision. The Toys ‘R’ Us music almost made us cry.

Covers by Clemens Wenners

Covers by Clemens Wenners

Musician Clemens WennersYouTube channel is loaded up with impressive cover versions of tracks from the 1970s and 1980s, accompanied by perfectly selected analog synthesizers and other period-accurate instruments. Tracks include The Bee Gees Nights on Broadway, The Cars’ Drive, and Phil Collins’ In the Air Tonight.

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The Mighty DX7 Medley

The Mighty DX7 Medley

Do you love classic ’80s music? Many of the songs of the era relied heavily on Yamaha’s vaunted DX7 synthesizer, which was the first mainstream synth to use FM synthesis, creating a variety of uniquely textured sounds, like the ones in Power DX7’s medley.

MALL 84

MALL 84

Gervais Merryweather describes his animated short as a “love letter to the 1980s,” and we think he nailed it. From the kids in the video arcade, to the giant hairdos, and TV store window displays. What pushes it over the edge is the synthwave soundtrack by Mitch Murder.

New Order: 1933 Style

New Order: 1933 Style

The New Order tune Blue Monday isn’t exactly contemporary – it’s over 35 years old, in fact. BBC Arts’ Orkestra Obselete took it back even further, envisioning what it might have sounded like had it been recorded in 1933, using instruments that were in favor at the time.

Kingdom of Night

Kingdom of Night

Diablo meets 1980’s suburbia and a sweet synthwave soundtrack in Kingdom of Night. This retro action RPG has you slaying demons in your neighborhood. Choose from three specializations, each with three classes. Coming to PC, Xbox One, PS4 and Switch.

A Flock of Metal

A Flock of Metal

Musician and producer Andy Rehfeldt transformed the 1980s classic I Ran (So Far Away), leaving the original vocals intact, and then re-recording the instrumentals with his own original hard rock arrangement. He should do a whole new wave album like this.

99 Brass Balloons

99 Brass Balloons

Everyone’s a super hero… everyone’s a Captain Kirk. ’80s kids will get a kick out of musician Seb Skelly’s all-brass rendition of Nena’s bi-lingual hit track 99 Luftballoons aka 99 Red Balloons here in the states.

Video Killed the Piano Star

Video Killed the Piano Star

Ireland-based musician Luke T Duffy shares a wonderful piano cover of the seminal MTV classic, the Buggles’ 1979 hit Video Killed the Radio Star. Be sure to check out some of Luke’s original compositions on Soundcloud.

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The DeLorean Paradox

The DeLorean Paradox

Introduced in 1981, the DeLorean DMC-12 was supposed to be the “car of the future,” yet despite its striking looks, it wasn’t that groundbreaking. The company that built it quickly crashed, but Back to the Future made it an icon and dream car for decades to come.

Siri in the ’80s

Siri in the ’80s

If voice assistants like Siri had existed back in the ’80s, they might have had a slightly different user experience than we’re used to today. Squirrel Monkey imagines what life might have been like if Siri shipped on a 3.5″ floppy and downloaded answers via a 1200 baud modem.

Queen in the ’80s

Queen in the ’80s

After filling our eyes and ears with some of Queen’s most epic performances of the 1970s, the official Queen channel is back with a reel of the band’s best moments in the decade of Pac-Man and big hair. Despite the controversy, we never thought adding synths hurt their sound.

Leonard Nimoy’s Laser Disc Player

Leonard Nimoy’s Laser Disc Player

A wonderful time capsule of the early 1980s, this fantastically cheesy promo clip for the Magnavox Magnavision VH-8000 Laser Video Disc Player featured a mustachioed Leonard Nimoy as the curious consumer as he learned about the player from a talking light-up rock.

The Floppy Disk Boombox

The Floppy Disk Boombox

Techmoan shows off some more more awesomely weird retro tech. The Roland MT-80S was a compact music player that played back MIDI files using songs stored on a 3.5 inch floppy disk. Since it was designed for learning music, it also packed a digital metronome.

Do It All the Time

Do It All the Time

While the song’s sound is distinctively 1980s, the music video for I DONT KNOW HOW BUT THEY FOUND ME’s track Do It All the Time looks like it was created by Kraftwerk back in the late 1970s. Even if they got their dates a little wrong, the track is a serious earworm.

Aaron Grooves on Pac-Man

Aaron Grooves on Pac-Man

Musician AaronGrooves puts a seriously shiney new coat of paint onto the theme music from the 1980s arcade game Pac-Man, playing the classic 8-bit tune on xylophone, drums, ukulele, cowbell, and a loop machine.

Morrissey: Back on the Chain Gang

Morrissey: Back on the Chain Gang

Musician and vocalist Morrissey applies his trademark sad wail to The Pretenders 1982 hit Back on the Chain Gang, offering up a delicious mindmeld of two iconic 1980s sounds. The song appears as a bonus track on the upcoming deluxe edition of Low in High School.

Oculus Rift in the ’80s

Oculus Rift in the ’80s

Wow, look at this! It’s like I’m in the movie TRON! Squirrel Monkey’s Wonders of the World Wide Web offers up another bit of retrorevisionist technology – a version of Oculus’ rift virtual reality system designed to run an IBM PC with at least an Intel 80286 chip.

California Games: 30 Years Later

California Games: 30 Years Later

If you never played the 1980s computer game California Games, load up a copy today. French creative studio ELMØ decided to reimagine the game for the 21st century, amping up the intensity to 11 for today’s crowd with extra zombies, gore, and garbage.

Visit the Chopping Mall

Visit the Chopping Mall

Looking for a movie to watch with your pals this Halloween? Look no further than Chopping Mall – a cult classic from the 1980s about a group of horny teens hang out in the mall after work, only to be stalked by killer robots. In Praise of Shadows explains why you need to watch.

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