*"This colorful and wildly entertaining look at the New Wave era in pop music (roughly, late 1970s through the end of the 1980s and defined within as “a straightforward songwriting approach relying heavily on synthesizers and other electronic equipment”) covers more than 150 artists and bands-from a-ha to Ze Popes. Best-selling acts such as Duran Duran, the Police, and the Smiths are included alongside one-hit wonders like the Flying Lizards, Kajagoogoo, and Q-Feel. Influential music-related personalities of the era, including Malcolm McClaren and Brian Eno, are also featured. A foreword by Gerald Casale, of the band Devo, and the introduction by the author serve to define New Wave and explain who was included as well as what was left out. Entries range from one column to three page spreads. The longer entries are made up of many photographs, with larger, well-known bands getting more coverage. The text is highly subjective and meant to be more for entertainment than research. A snarky-but amusing-tone is found throughout (e.g., 'Despite writing songs for uniformly despicable films, Go West has managed to keep a career going; In 1989, Cutting Crew released the appropriately named The Scattering, which sent record buyers running in all directions looking for somewhere-anywhere-to go in order to not buy it.' The eye-popping graphics-featuring a massive amount of photographs-will delight any fan of the music and the time period. Interesting sidebars are peppered throughout the text, such as 'Gender-Bending,' 'NY Clubs,' 'Heartthrobs,' 'Men's Fashion,' 'The Many Sounds of New Wave,' 'Music Videos,' 'Female Sex Symbols,' and 'Movies.' Appendixes include several 'Best of New Wave' lists, including 'Fifty Most Essential New Wave Singles,' 'Top Ten New Wave Bands with the Most Ridiculous Hair,' 'New Wave Timeline,' 'Ten Weirdest New Wave Singles,' and 'Top Twenty Essential New Wave Albums.' A bibliography and an index of artists and song titles round out the book..Cheeky yet incredibly informative, this is an inexpensive must-have for any music collection and will do especially well in circulation." --Booklist [STARRED REVIEW]
About the Author
Daniel Bukszpan is a talented freelance journalist and music critic, but only a mediocre guitarist. He has written countless music reviews and feature articles for various newspapers, magazines, and online publications. Bukszpan is also the author of the best-selling Encyclopedia of Heavy Metal, with a foreword by Ronny James Dio. In his spare time, he performs heavy metal and occasionally produces records under his own label, Smoking in Bed Records. Bukszpan lives in New York City with his wife and son.