A look back at 1983: The year of the second British Invasion

Great retrospective piece by David Chiu:

After an amazing 1983, it would have seemed that the British were poised to gain a further foothold in American pop music for another couple of years. The trend continued onto 1984 with acts like Howard Jones, Talk Talk, Wham! and Frankie Goes to Hollywood scoring hits in the U.S. Top 40. But shortly afterwards, New Pop entered a period of declining popularity, reflecting a backlash from those who felt that synthpop music was less credible and the antithesis of rock and roll. Two of the most popular British acts went through a transitional period in the mid 80s that signaled the movements decline: Duran Duran had splintered into two side projects, the Power Station and Arcadia, according to Reynolds; and Boy George ran into legal entanglements regarding drugs, and Culture Club broke up. Meanwhile, American artists such as Prince, Cyndi Lauper and Bruce Springsteen started to rack up platinum hits. By the end of the 80s, hair metal, dance and hip-hop became the popular musical trends in America.

“I think most of those groups, as so often happens, started to make worse records and accompanied them with really bloated, absurd and pompous videos,” said Reynolds. “It was the combination of success and touring and astronomical demands on your time affecting your creativity, but also success bloating egos and destroying any sense of perspective. The Americans by that point had cottoned on to video and making more catchy, singles-oriented, danceable stuff. They were beating the British at their own game. Even old 70s rockers like ZZ Top were making sharper singles and more entertaining videos.”

via CBS News.

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