Upbeat Synthpop
May 31, 2009 6:47 PM   Subscribe

I'm interested in finding more upbeat-sounding synthpop or alt/pop singles with electronic elements for my music library.

Good examples of what I've been liking include "Rocket" by Polysics, "Step Step Step" and "Exploding Impacting" by Belaire, "Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots" by The Flaming Lips, and "Microwave" by The Soft Lightes. I also like a few B52 songs, and generally the entire discographies of Beck and REM, in case you wanted an idea of what kind of music I like as a whole. This specific slice of music is a kind I've just realized I really enjoy, but I have not too much of it in my library.

This is all about the melody of the song. Darker lyrics are perfectly fine, and I actually kind of like the dichotomy, so that's a bonus. 80's songs are perfectly fine, as I am a college student and they will (shamefully) probably be new to me.

Thanks for your help, and feel free to ask me to clarify my points. I've never studied music, so I have trouble describing it as nicely as I would like.
posted by mccarty.tim to Media & Arts (40 answers total) 42 users marked this as a favorite
Check out Ganymede, especially Neon Rain.
posted by Kirklander at 6:55 PM on May 31, 2009

posted by Herschel at 7:10 PM on May 31, 2009 [1 favorite]

The entire Erasure and Petshop Boys back catalog.
posted by cosmicbandito at 7:11 PM on May 31, 2009

A Flock Of Seagulls
... plus I found a (synthpop type) song which sounds like from back in the 80's but was recorded last year: Neon Neon - I Told Her On Alderaan.
posted by Webbster at 7:20 PM on May 31, 2009

posted by infinityjinx at 7:20 PM on May 31, 2009

Junior Boys and Passion Pit come to mind.
posted by telegraph at 7:28 PM on May 31, 2009

A Different Drum is a record label with a fairly large catalog. Some stuff is kind of cheesy or over the top, but I rather enjoy other bands.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:29 PM on May 31, 2009

ETBG! Specifically Walking Wounded and Temperamental!
posted by 2oh1 at 7:29 PM on May 31, 2009

Alice in Videoland
posted by martinrebas at 7:40 PM on May 31, 2009

More Goldfrapp.
posted by timing at 7:45 PM on May 31, 2009

Seconding The Postal Service.
Cut Copy?

And, in the spirit of being only a little helpful, Wikipedia's list of synthpop artists.
posted by papayaninja at 8:06 PM on May 31, 2009

Magnetic Fields...e.g. (that's a very cool fan vid btw... found footage(?) of cuba)
posted by Flashman at 8:14 PM on May 31, 2009

Battles, perhaps?
posted by HumuloneRanger at 8:21 PM on May 31, 2009

Yaz--Upstairs at Eric's.
posted by Ironmouth at 8:26 PM on May 31, 2009 [1 favorite]

Upbeat synthpop? Junior Senior!
posted by merocet at 8:26 PM on May 31, 2009

A little off the beaten track, but Mathématiques Modernes were fun back in the day.
posted by gimonca at 8:35 PM on May 31, 2009

If you subscribe to iTunes, check out groovera.com.

Upstairs at Eric's is also what you are looking for.

As for dichotomy, you may want to try Portishead.
posted by Cookbooks and Chaos at 8:40 PM on May 31, 2009

Stereolab x 1,000,000,000,000
posted by numinous at 8:41 PM on May 31, 2009

More artists not yet mentioned: Pete Shelley's post-Buzzcocks output is worth looking into. And OMD did more than just "If You Leave".
posted by gimonca at 8:54 PM on May 31, 2009

2nding Junior Senior
Tom Tom Club
maybe later era Talking Heads
Dan Deacon
Big Digits (hip-hoppy and less poppy)
Bonde Do Role
The Go! Team
Four Tet
posted by ishotjr at 9:05 PM on May 31, 2009

Ok, some more:
Crystal Castles
Black Moth Super Rainbow
Super Furry Animals (only Guerilla really)
posted by ishotjr at 9:09 PM on May 31, 2009

Crystal Castles(!!!)
LCD Soundsystem

also, nthing Capsule, Cut Copy, Goldfrapp, the Go! Team, Royksopp, Stereolab, and most of the rest of what's already been said... god i love synthpop :) thanks for the new suggestions too!
posted by lizbunny at 9:28 PM on May 31, 2009

Most of these guys are a little less conventionally poppy than some of the groups mentioned above, but I'd consider them all to have strong pop elements as well as electronic (or pseudo-electronic) sounds:

Black Moth Super Rainbow
Boards of Canada
I Am Spoonbender
Holy Fuck
Out Hud
posted by ubersturm at 9:29 PM on May 31, 2009

Dan Deacon
posted by phrontist at 10:26 PM on May 31, 2009

Pop synth music with darker lyrics basically describes of Montreal's Hissing Fauna Are You The Destroyer? If you want a sample, there's The Past Is A Grotesque Animal (yt) or maybe A Sentence Of Sorts In Kongsvinger (yt) for something more upbeat (and shorter).
posted by theiconoclast31 at 11:03 PM on May 31, 2009

Good suggestions so far.

This music blog is absolutely amazing, and will over time yield a gold mine of what you're interested in, as well as a lot of other great stuff. Most selections have a "try" link that will allow you to download the full album using rapidshare or a similar service.
posted by Derive the Hamiltonian of... at 2:55 AM on June 1, 2009

Best answer: You might like Ladyhawke. Great upbeat synth.
posted by theraflu at 4:19 AM on June 1, 2009

Whoops. Ladyhawke.
posted by theraflu at 4:20 AM on June 1, 2009

You'd probably enjoy most of Oppenheimer's music.
posted by LolaGeek at 4:35 AM on June 1, 2009

nthing Crystal Castles
posted by spec80 at 6:49 AM on June 1, 2009

There are a few singles up on Myspace (and if you do some Google searching you can find some downloadable MP3s) for this summer's forthcoming album from Discovery, which is a collaboration between members of Vampire Weekend and Ra Ra Riot and seems to fit your description perfectly.
posted by ckolderup at 7:13 AM on June 1, 2009

try Shout Out Out Out Out. i didn't think i would like them but i saw them live, and now i'm addicted!
posted by gursky at 7:34 AM on June 1, 2009

nthing Capsule.

And: Supercar

shameless plug: supercar provide most of the soundtrack for the movie Ping Pong which is about the best sports/friends movie out there, in my opinion
posted by emmling at 8:04 AM on June 1, 2009

nthing Freezepop. They are an indie synthpop band with a mostly upbeat sound. Except for their latest album, Future Future Future Perfect.
posted by majikstreet at 11:45 AM on June 1, 2009 [1 favorite]

FM Belfast, upbeat synthpop straight out of Iceland.
posted by sillygwailo at 10:32 AM on June 2, 2009

Orange Juice
Gary Newman
Heaven 17

Sound like the 80s:
posted by hydrophonic at 12:17 AM on June 3, 2009

Styrofoam has always been a favorite.
posted by andrewcilento at 11:34 PM on June 4, 2009

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