Musician Astrophysics takes songs from various genres, and slathers them with a thick layer of 1980s electronic sounds, then complements them with appropriately retro graphics. There’s lots of great stuff to enjoy on their YouTube channel, but this synthwave remix of Outkast’s 2003 hit Hey Ya! is our favorite (so far.)
THE BEST 1980s
Screen Junkies goes back to the ’80s to poke some fun at The NeverEnding Story, a childhood fantasy movie that’s loaded with imaginative imagery and the kind of darkness you’d expect when you hire the guy who directed Das Boot and Outbreak to make a kids movie.
Hey! What a wonderful kind of day! Hot Dad turns the theme song from the PBS Kids show Arthur on its ear, replacing the warm reggae riddims of Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers’ original with a moody 1980s synthwave sound. It shouldn’t work, but somehow it does.
Aerobics videos were one of the hallmarks of 1980s cheese. And while they might have been incredibly campy when set to Olivia Newton-John music, this video shows how they can be improved upon when the choreography lines up with Rob Zombie’s Dragula. It also works well with Superbeast.
Before the Internet we know today, we had standalone services like AOL. And before that, we had Bulletin Board Systems. These homebrew hangouts let people with similar interests congregate via their computers. Off the Cuf looks back at the first BBS and its creators, and how they laid the groundwork for much to come.
Vocalist Jared Halley is an expert at creating multi-track recordings of his own voice, demonstrating his excellent vocal range and harmonic abilities. Sure, we’ve heard dozens of covers of A-Ha’s 1985 hit Take on Me, but we’re still not sick of it, so here you go.
After 8 long months, Chicago remix duo the The Hood Internet has completed their retrospective series, with each of their tracks representing a year from 1979 and 1989, and each brilliantly capturing the best and most memorable music of the era. Enjoy our playlist and let all 11 tracks fill your ears with joy.
’80s kids might remember Atari’s classic Star Wars arcade machine. The sit-down cabinet version always had a line at our local arcade, and it’s become quite collectible, with prices upwards of $7,000. Retro Recipes decided to replicate the machine using parts from 1upArcade’s $400 standup version of the game.
Decades after their time-traveling hijinx, Bill and Ted are back for another excellent adventure. Original stars Keanu Reeves and Alex Winter decide they’re heding to the future to visit their future selves and steal the Wyld Stallions song that will save the universe. Directed by Dean Parisot (Galaxy Quest).
Remember that John Hughes movie where Anthony Michael Hall and Ilan Mitchell-Smith engineered their own unrealistic fantasy woman? Well what if her name wasn’t Lisa, but instead was Black Betty? Imagine no longer. Thanks to mashup artist DJ Cummerbund, we have our answer. Bam-ba-Lam, mama-sa, mama-koosa!
Basic Fun, the guys behind the portable version of The Oregon Trail, comes another retro-inspired handheld game. This time, we get the educational mystery adventure Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego?, complete with authentic sounds, graphics, and gameplay, and a case that looks like a tiny computer from the 1980s.
Toto’s 1982 hit Africa has seemingly been covered a million times. But we can say with certainty that this is the first time we’ve heard it played by a pair of high-voltage Tesla coils. We could almost feel the hairs on the back of our neck standing up from the electricity. Performance by Franzoli Electronics.
If you grew up in the 1980s, Garfield was everywhere. The cynical, lasagna-loving kitty was licensed beyond belief. Snellby Reviews looks back at perhaps the greatest Garfield merch ever – Tyco’s phone that was shaped like the fat orange tabby, along with a strange story about the phones washing up along the coast of France.
CreatorVC is producing this documentary about the science fiction films of the 1980s. The retrospective will include more than four hours of footage and interviews with the actors, directors, writers, SFX experts, and composers who brought these futuristic visions to life. The project has already blown through its Kickstarter goal.
The 1980 remake of Flash Gordon is one of the campiest sci-fi movies of all time, but over the years, it’s become a cult classic. Now, the film is getting a re-release with a full UHD digital remaster, bringing out all of the colors and details in the costumes and scenery, and cranking up the audio on Queen’s original soundtrack. Drops 8.2020.
What started out as a satirical “AI” music video host became one of the most recognizable characters of the 1980s, appearing in Coke ads, a music video, and even a TV series. Space Feather’s comprehensive analysis of the character is well worth a watch for anyone familiar with Matt Frewer’s iconic glitchbot.
We’re pretty sure not a single member of Kaboom Percussion was born yet when these tracks came out, but that shouldn’t take anything away from their playful performance of 1980s hits on their totally tubular music makers. They did a medley of tunes for ’90s kids too.
UK shop ReadyPlayerTwo creates neat 3-dimensional logo signs inspired by classic video game and computer systems. Each one is 3D printed from PLA plastic to accurately replicate the original color scheme, and has neodymium magnets securely mounted inside. They also make personalized C64 and Sinclair ZX logos.
“My heart is human, my blood is boiling, my brain IBM.” Styx’s 1983 track Mr. Roboto represented the pinnacle of overwrought concept rock. Yet there has yet to be a more appropriate song played by Paweł Zadrożniak’s electromechanical orchestra, the Floppotron and its servo-powered instrumentation.
The music video for The Treble’s track No Secrets (There For You), features shot-for-shot remakes of dozens of classic 1980s music videos, from A-Ha’s Take on Me to Nena’s 99 Luftballons to Devo’s Whip It. See if you can name them all, then check your guesses in the video’s YouTube description.
The Mighty Mighty Bosstones’ track The Impression That I Get came out in 1997, but it’s ska sounds are pretty timeless. On the other hand, Mick Mazz’s cover of the track uses the distinctive synth pop sounds of the 1980s to place it smackdab alongside songs like A-Ha’s Take on Me and Howard Jones’ Life in One Day.
While sheltering in place at their homes, Green Day frontman Billie Joe Armstrong teamed up with Susanna Hoffs to perform a great cover version of the song that was made famous by her band The Bangles, and written by none other than the late great Prince Rogers Nelson.
Kings Wild Project masterfully makes unique premium playing cards. Among their decks is this series, with a design inspired by VHS tapes. The card backs look like video tapes, their packs look like VHS boxes, while their fronts are a 1980s cyberpunk dream. Sadly, the affordable standard edition has already sold out.
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