100 Greatest New Wave Songs



Criteria: These songs were chosen for their musical quality, originality, and popularity in the "New Wave" era of approx. 1978 to 1987.

Background 'New Wave' evolved from 'Punk' in the late '70s being less anti-social and more radio (and MTV) friendly, hitting it's high in '83 and faded around '87. It can be best described as mixing the energy of Punk with a bit of 'Glam', 'Pop', 'Art-Rock' & 'Dance' and relied heavily on synthesizers. (Note - These songs are not necessarily the artists all-time greatest, but their best of the 'New Wave' sound.)
Greatest New Wave Songs
1. Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)
Eurythmics (1983)
2. Don't You (Forget About Me)
Simple Minds (1985)
3. Everybody Wants to Rule the World
Tears For Fears (1985)
4. Relax
Frankie Goes to Hollywood (1983)
5. One Way Or Another
Blondie (1978)
6. Burning Down the House
Talking Heads (1983)
7. Tainted Love
Soft Cell (1981)
8. Down Under
Men At Work (1982)
9. I Ran (So Far Away)
A Flock of Seagulls (1982)
10. Don't You Want Me
Human League (1981)
11. You Might Think
The Cars (1984)
12. I Melt With You
Modern English (1983)
13. Take On Me
a-ha (1985)
14. Hungry Like the Wolf
Duran Duran (1982)
15. Once in a Lifetime
Talking Heads (1980)
16. Whip It!
Devo (1980)
17. Blue Monday
New Order (1983)
18. Peace, Love And Understanding?, (What's So Funny 'Bout)
Elvis Costello (1979)
19. Don't Stand So Close To Me
The Police (1980)
20. Shout
Tears For Fears (1985)
21. People Are People
Depeche Mode (1981)
22. True
Spandau Ballet (1983)
23. Brass In Pocket
The Pretenders (1980)
24. Something About You
Level 42 (1986)
25. Hold Me Now
Thompson Twins (1984)
26. Turning Japanese
The Vapors (1981)
27. She Blinded Me With Science
Thomas Dolby (1984)
28. Psycho Killer
Talking Heads (1977)
29. Is She Really Going Out with Him?
Joe Jackson (1979)
30. Poison Arrow
ABC (1982)
31. Rock Lobster
B-52s (1979)
32. Need You Tonight
INXS (1987)
33. Come On Eileen
Dexy's Midnight Runners (1982)
34. Heart Of Glass
Blondie (1978)
35. Everyday I Write The Book
Elvis Costello (1983)
36. Cars
Gary Numan (1980)
37. Tempted
Squeeze (1981)
38. Who Can It Be Now?
Men At Work (1982)
39. It's My Life
Talk Talk (1982)
40. West End Girls
Pet Shop Boys (1985)
41. Do You Really Want to Hurt Me
Culture Club (1982)
42. Pump It Up
Elvis Costello (1978)
43. Doctor! Doctor!
Thompson Twins (1984)
44. Promises, Promises
Naked Eyes (1983)
45. Spirits In The Material World
The Police (1981)
46. Goody Two Shoes
Adam Ant (1982)
47. More Than This
Roxy Music (1982)
48. Pulling Mussels (From the Shell)
Squeeze (1980)
49. Love My Way
Psychedelic Furs (1982)
50. Wouldn't It Be Good
Nik Kershaw (1984)
51. Two Tribes
Frankie Goes to Hollywood (1984)
52. Senses Working Overtime
XTC (1982)
53. Obsession
Animotion (1984)
54. Save It for Later
The English Beat (1982)
55. Alive and Kicking
Simple Minds (1985)
56. Saved By Zero
The Fixx (1983)
57. Here Comes the Rain Again
Eurythmics (1984)
58. Tenderness
General Public (1984)
59. Voices Carry
Til Tuesday (1985)
60. Mexican Radio
Wall of Voodoo (1982)
61. Beds Are Burning
Midnight Oil (1988)
62. Send Me An Angel
Real Life (1983)
63. Always Something There to Remind Me
Naked Eyes (1982)
64. Steppin' Out
Joe Jackson (1982)
65. Why Me?
Planet P Project (1983)
66. No One Is To Blame
Howard Jones (1986)
67. Shake It Up
The Cars (1982)
68. The Metro
Berlin (1982)
69. You Spin Me 'Round (Like a Record)
Dead Or Alive (1985)
70. The Safety Dance
Men Without Hats (1983)
71. One Thing Leads to Another
The Fixx (1983)
72. She's a Beauty
The Tubes (1983)
73. Rock Me Amadeus
Falco (1986)
74. In a Big Country
Big Country (1983)
75. Life In a Northern Town
The Dream Academy (1985)
76. Major Tom (Coming Home)
Peter Schilling (1983)
77. Just What I Needed
The Cars (1978)
78. Time (Clock of the Heart)
Culture Club (1983)
79. The Sun Always Shines On TV
A-Ha (1985)
80. Come Back and Stay
Paul Young (1983)
81. Der Kommissar
Falco (1986)
82. Video Killed the Radio Star
The Buggles (1979)
83. Girls on Film
Duran Duran (1981)
84. Only the Lonely
The Motels (1982)
85. Wishing (If I Had a Photograph of You)
A Flock of Seagulls (1982)
86. Avalon
Roxy Music (1982)
87. I Want Candy
Bow Wow Wow (1982)
88. Too Shy
Kajagoogoo (1983)
89. Fade to Grey - Visage
90. Dance Hall Days
Wang Chung (1984)
91. A Little Respect
Erasure (1988)
92. Our House
Madness (1983)
93. Reap the Wild Wind
Ultravox (1982)
94. Destination Unknown
Missing Persons (1982)
95. I Don't Like Mondays
Boomtown Rats (1979)
96. Messages
OMD (1980)
97. Love Plus One
Haircut 100 (1982)
98. I Got You
Split Enz (1980)
99. So In Love
OMD (1985)
100. Lawnchairs
Our Daughters Wedding (1980)
Adam Ant

A Flock of Seagulls


Edited By:
Last Updated: 2017-04-19
Newly added names are in Red