The Best New Wave Bands Bands/Musicians

The Best New Wave Bands

20,819 votes 1,444 voters 91,703 views 371 items tags f p @

List Criteria: Only bands whose music is considered primarily New Wave or rose to fame during the periods of new wave from the 1980s and beginning of the 2000s. Though there can be exceptions, though these were the most popular periods

This New Wave bands list ranks the best New Wave groups and musicians by votes. This list of top New Wave artists let’s you see who jazz fusion fans think are the best in New Wave. New Wave was movement that took the music world by storm. It changed the landscape of popular music and was one of the most important genres of the 1980s. The best new wave bands had a profound impact on shaping music for decades to come. With their mix of glam, punk, goth, electronica, and art rock, new wave bands were very important in shaping pop culture. New Wave bands were also aided by the growth of MTV, which helped visualize their songs, and reach a broader audience. Thanks to iconic videos, many New Wave bands were able to capture the hearts and minds of young music fans. Even today, the best New Wave bands are still important and still sell out arenas and headline festivals around the world.

So, what are the best New Wave bands? Any list of New Wave bands has to include British bands like The Cure, Depeche Mode, Tears for Fears, Psychedelic Furs, Duran Duran, and The Police just to name a few. There are so many great New Wave bands that it's hard to limit naming them to just this few, but, that's the beauty of this list. If you like New Wave music, you should be familiar with many of the names on here. With the continued popularity of 80s New Wave bands, it's not surprising that it made a comeback in the early 2000s. Alternative rock acts like The Strokes, The Killers, and more citing New Wave music as helping shape their sound.

If you know New Wave, and think someone is missing from this list, feel free to add them. This list answers the questions "who are the best New Wave bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest New Wave musician ever?" If you know enough about the genre, please vote based on the quality of the band's music instead of just voting for the most popular New Wave bands that you might've heard of. 


List Photo: user uploaded image
  • 15 ReRanks
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  1. 51
    + 57
    - 28

    added by looksharp
    New Wave, Rock music, Pop rock

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  2. 52
    + 188
    - 104

    ranked low on reranks
    Adult album alternative, Synthpop, New Wave

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  3. 53
    + 59
    - 36


    Synthpop, New Wave, Pop music

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  4. 54
    + 83
    - 60


    Synthpop, New Wave, Rock music

    ;
  5. 55
    + 79
    - 46


    New Wave, New Romanticism, Post-punk

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  6. 56
    + 74
    - 41


    Soundtrack, New Wave, Spoken word

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  7. 57
    + 68
    - 12

    ranked low on reranks & added by RobinGallego
    Krautrock, Synthpop, Electronic music

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  8. 58
    + 51
    - 29


    New Wave, Pop rock, Alternative rock

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  9. 59
    + 63
    - 50


    New Wave, Pop music, Rock music

    ;
  10. 60
    + 17
    - 4

    added by punksnotdead
    Noise rock, New Wave, Dance-punk

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  11. 61
    + 38
    - 16

    added by RobinGallego
    Synthpop, New Wave, New Romanticism

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  12. 62
    + 65
    - 38


    Synthpop, New Wave, Pop music

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  13. 63
    + 55
    - 45

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    New Wave, Rock music, New Romanticism

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  14. 64
    + 29
    - 8

    added by looksharp
    New Wave, Psychobilly, Rock music

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  15. 65
    + 56
    - 29


    Jangle pop, New Wave, Rock music

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  16. 66
    + 54
    - 36


    New Wave, Industrial rock, Alternative rock

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  17. 67
    + 31
    - 11

    added by looksharp
    New Wave, 2 Tone, Ska punk

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  18. 68
    + 37
    - 32


    New Wave

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  19. 69
    + 46
    - 31


    New Wave, Alternative rock

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  20. 70
    + 61
    - 43


    Girl group, Synthpop, New Wave

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  21. 71
    + 50
    - 39


    Synthpop, New Wave, Dance-rock

    ;
  22. 72
    + 61
    - 50


    Synthpop, New Wave, Rock music

    ;
  23. 73
    + 45
    - 10

    added by looksharp
    Celtic rock, New Wave, Rock music

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  24. 74
    + 45
    - 36


    Pop punk, New Wave, Pop music

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  25. 75
    + 35
    - 16

    added by RobinGallego
    Music hall, Pop music, Rock music

    ;
  26. 76
    + 52
    - 37


    Synthpop, New Wave, Electronic music

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  27. 77
    + 39
    - 24

    added by RobinGallego
    Synthpop, New Wave, Pop music

    ;
  28. 78
    + 33
    - 30


    Synthpop, New Wave, Rock music

    ;
  29. 79
    + 37
    - 25

    added by RobinGallego
    Celtic rock, Blues-rock, Rock music

    ;
  30. 80
    + 41
    - 30


    New Wave, Rock music, Dance-pop

    ;
  31. 81
    + 46
    - 34


    New Wave, Pop music, Rock music

    ;
  32. 82
    + 41
    - 27


    New Wave, Rock music, Dance music

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  33. 83
    + 37
    - 26


    Downtempo, Alternative hip hop, Synthpop

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  34. 84
    + 46
    - 35


    Synthpop, New Wave, Electronic music

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  35. 85
    + 19
    - 2


    Hip hop music, Pop punk, New Wave

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  36. 86
    + 45
    - 36


    New Wave, Pop music, Rock music

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  37. 87
    + 39
    - 32


    New Wave, Pop rock

    ;
  38. 88
    + 30
    - 8


    Pop punk, New Wave, Rock music

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  39. 89
    + 27
    - 22

    added by HelenNguyen
    Synthpop, New Wave, Pop music

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  40. 90
    + 10
    - 4


    Synthpop, New Wave, Pop music

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  41. 91
    + 26
    - 5


    New Wave, Gothic rock, Alternative rock

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  42. 92
    + 36
    - 26

    added by Mweihn
    Synthpop, New Wave, Pop music

    ;
  43. 93
    + 37
    - 25


    New Wave, Power pop, Mod revival

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  44. 94
    + 25
    - 7


    ;
  45. 95
    + 25
    - 16

    added by looksharp
    Pop music, Ska, Reggae

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  46. 96
    + 22
    - 7

    added by looksharp
    New Wave, Rock music, Pop rock

    ;
  47. 97
    + 36
    - 34


    Synthpop, New Wave, Sophisti-pop

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  48. 98
    + 13
    - 7


    New Wave, Rock music, Pop rock

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  49. 99
    + 27
    - 24

    added by RobinGallego
    Hip hop music, Synthpop, New Wave

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  50. 100
    + 29
    - 30


    Synthpop, New Wave, Electronic music

    ;
372 +

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