Retro 80s playlist

I’m a big fan of 80s music, and for the last few years I've been working on an 80s project, which I intend to share on the blog eventually. I'm far from finished as I keep discovering new bands, so posting about that will have to wait for now.  So far I have 185 songs from the year 1980 and have plenty more artists to listen to, so it's looking like a top 200 than a top 100. Even the lesser known bands put out really good songs.

In the meantime, you can listen to the retro 80s playlist I created ON YOUTUBE. Some tracks I have previously shared, others not. All of the songs are from 2000-2015. Below is the tracklist.
Interesting so many of this generation’s musicians have been influenced by the sound from the 80s.

A Real Hero (feat. Electric Youth) by College  (Drive soundtrack)

Chinatown by Destroyer

Beth/Rest by Bon Iver

The Theory of Relativity by Stars

Cherish by Ballet School

Round and Round by Ariel Pink

Fallout by Neon Indian

Seasons (Waiting On You) by Future Islands

Sister Part 1 by Cliff Martinez (instrumental) (Only God Forgives soundtrack)

Anthonio (Berlin Breakdown Version) by Annie (The Guest soundtrack)

Title by Disasterpeace (instrumental) (It Follows soundtrack)

Rimbaud Eyes by Dum Dum Girls

On Our Own by Diamond Rings

Take Another Look by The Cars

Conquest by The Sound of Arrows

Behind the mask by Michael Jackson

Rebecca by Tesla Boy

Outer Limits by SLEEP ∞ OVER

We Have Everything by Young Galaxy

90 Degrees by Ladytron

Halogen (I Could Be a Shadow) by Neon Indian

Lady by Chromatics

On Christmas Dum Dum Girls

Whatever Leads Me To You by Geoffrey O'Connor

The Haunting Idle (instrumental) by The War On Drugs

Fractals by Keep Shelly in Athens

Warm In The Winter by Glass Candy

DNA by Empire of the Sun

Detroit City by Texas

She Will by Savages

Trap Door by Stars

Take It Out On Me by Chairlift

True Survivor feat. David Hasselhoff (Kung Fury soundtrack)

Kaputt by Destroyer

Cosmo Black by Dynatron (Cold in July soundtrack)

Let Me Down Gently by La Roux

Change of Coast by Neon Indian (Grand Theft Auto 5 soundtrack)

Wanna Fight by Cliff Martinez (Only God Forgives soundtrack)

Cheap Shots by Holy Ghost!

Red Eyes by The War On Drugs

Savage Night at the Opera by Destroyer

Shot At The Night by The Killers (feat. M83)

Can't Deny My Love by Brandon Flowers

Let's Get Lost by Carly Rae Jepsen

Heartbeat Overdrive by Ballet School

Disappearing by The War on Drugs

No Title (Molly) by John Maus

Across the Sea by D'eon

In Disco Lights by Blaue Blume

Rocket by Goldfrapp

There's a Girl in the Corner by Twilight Sad (Robert Smith version)

Frack by Princess Chelsea

Emotion by Carly Rae Jepsen

Cover Your Tracks (CFCF Remix) by Young Galaxy

My Plants Are Dead by Blonde Redhead

Wait & See by Holy Ghost!

Vortex by John Carpenter

Pearl of a Girl by Kristeen Young

Last Forever by Molly Nilsson

Streetlight by John Maus

Accelerated by Miami Nights 1984

The Laziest River by Destroyer

New additions:

Roger (Laid Back Cover) by MGMT (Live on KCRW)

Vengeance by Perturbator  (Hotline Miami game soundtrack)

Miami by Jasper Byrne (Hotline Miami game soundtrack)

Miami Disco by Perturbator (Hotline Miami game soundtrack)

This Is It by Michael Jackson

Johnny And Mary (Robert Palmer cover) by Todd Terje and Bryan Ferry

Nightcall by Kavinsky (Drive soundtrack)

Under Your Spell by Desire (Drive soundtrack)

AT2 by AraabMuzik

Decade Dance by Jasper Byrne (Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number soundtrack)

Dust by M.O.O.N. (Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number soundtrack)

I Can Change by Brandon Flowers

Accelerate by Susanne Sundfør

Slowly by Susanne Sundfør

Delirious by Susanne Sundfør

A Million Stars by McCluskey, Kroehler, Antonoff, Dost  (The D Train Soundtrack)

Tonight by Timecop1983

Interceptor by Mitch Murder

Green Lady by Merchandise

Wallflower by Peacock Affect/George Holman

Great Expectations by Toto

The Music (Instrumental) by Marcus Marr (Pusher soundtrack)

Intro/Opening song by Trentemøller (Halt and Catch Fire soundtrack)

Hands All Over Me by Tamaryn

The Story by KING (2011)

Body Talk by Foxes

1982 by Miss Kittin & The Hacker

The Twilight Hour by Still Corners

Jay by Disasterpeace (instrumental) (It Follows soundtrack)

Sonic 1 Music: Scrap Brain Zone

Warning Call by Chvrches

So Much It Hurts by Niki & the Dove

Closing Shot by Lindstrøm

Beautiful Sea (Sing Street soundtrack)

News from the Sun (live bootleg) by Neon Indian

We"ll Be Waiting by Cat's Eyes

Kiss Me Goodbye by ABC

The Neon Demon by Cliff Martinez (The Neon Demon soundtrack)

Stranger Things (Intro Theme)

Kids (Stranger Things soundtrack)

Im Taking Off (Shield your Eyes) by Space Knife

In Your Arms (Final Fantasy) by Vår

Red Earth & Pouring Rain by Bear's Den

What's It Gonna Be? by Shura

I Feel It Coming (ft. Daft Punk) by The Weeknd

City Lights (aka Danger Zone) by Blanche

Build A Fire by Young Ejecta

Candy May by Alex Cameron

Happy Not Knowing by Carly Rae Jepsen

Los Angeles by The Midnight

True Blue (featuring Angel Olsen) by Mark Ronson

Which retro 80s songs or albums are you a fan of?


  1. This looks like a really fun playlist. I'll have to give it a listen during work this week.

    Have you listened to the Hotline Miami game soundtrack? It's heavily influenced by 80s music, and I think you might dig it. Here's a link:

    There's also a sequel but I haven't played that yet or listened to the soundtrack.

    1. Eric @ The Warning Sign: Thanks for showing an interest! There’s a lot of amateur 80s retro music on youtube that’s forgettable, hopefully my list contains some of the better stuff! Remember you said you loved The Guest 80s retro soundtrack, so some of the other music here should appeal to you also.
      I haven’t listened to that game soundtrack, will give the music a try. On a side note, I think The Grand Theft Auto gaming series has done a good job of bringing back 80s music, not retro, but actual 80s songs, I sometimes browse through those soundtracks.

    2. I gave it a listen -- lots of good stuff on there! Found a few new bands to dig into. Glad to hear you enjoyed the Hotline Miami soundtracks, too.

      Yeah, the GTA series has always had great soundtracks. I still have the box set of Vice City -- Wildstyle is my personal favorite radio station from that game.

    3. Eric @ The Warning: Thanks for listening! If you “dig up” anything great, let me know, and I might add to the playlist.
      Re. Hotline Miami soundtracks, as you can see in the new additions, I especially took a liking to the work of Perturbator and Jasper Byrne.
      I’ll give GTA Vice City: Wildstyle radio station a listen soon, hope I enjoy as much as you did.

  2. I'm so underversed in 80's music. Thanks for a great list of tracks to check out!

    1. @Fisti: You’re welcome!

      There’s a lot of new music that’s influenced by the 80s. Some good, some mediocre

  3. I love retro 80's song. And what a good topic to blog. Of course I love A Real Hero.

    Haven't heard Empire of The Sun for a while now.

    I love The Pierces, and haven't heard their new music if there's any now. She & Him is probably retro '60s or '70s

    1. @Andina: Agree it’s a good topic to blog on, because so much new music is retro 80s. I think Drive soundtrack was successful in bringing the new synthwave genre to mainstream attention.
      Empire of the Sun are best known for their 2008 hit Walking On A Dream, but I think their second album is quite underrated(which I shared a track from here). Yeah, She and Him is suited for a different retro list.

  4. Great stuff! I need to check out some of these, as I love 80s-influenced music and several of these tracks already. So glad to see a couple of Carly Rae Jepsen songs on here. Surprisingly, her album Emotion is one of my favorites of the year. It's such a great pop album!

    1. @Josh: Thanks, and hope you enjoy the playlist :) Carly Rae Jepsen surprised me too this year, because her old stuff didn’t really appeal to me. Her new album is so upbeat and happy and I love the 80s pop vibe.


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