It's been a while, but recently I saw a film that reminded me of a lot of great songs from the 1980s, so here I go again...
The Cold-War spy thriller "Atomic Blonde" is a frenetic journey through Berlin during the final days of the Berlin Wall. It's definitely more a comic-book movie than a James Bond-style romp because there is literally NOTHING subtle about this film! Especially the extended, ridiculously violent fight scenes and gun battles! Fortunately, all it takes for Lorraine (Charlize Theron's character) to feel better is a splash in a tub filled with ice!
Well, except for the broken heart...(spoiler alert!)
Anyway, one of the things I liked best about the film was the soundtrack! Tunes by Nena (99 Luftballoons), The Clash (London Calling) and Siouxsie and the Banshees (Cities in Dust, which although was about ancient Pompeii's destruction, it stands as a vivid metaphor to the aftermath of a nuclear war) brought about a bit of cold-war nostalgia.
Being a teenager in the '70s and a young adult in the 80's, I was brought up with the knowledge that the world could end at pretty much any moment! Think about that. The United States and Soviet Union had a nuclear strategy called M.A.D., for Mutual Assured Destruction; or, in other words, both nations had so goddamn many weapons and delivery systems to guarantee that in the case of a nuclear war, there was NO doubt that both countries would be pulverized into radioactive dust, and then the dust would be atomized into a vapor that would no doubt poison the rest of the world!
As a child in the 1960s, I recall that in addition to our standard monthly fire drills, we had nuclear war drills. These were the infamous "duck and cover" routines that may have spared some of us from the initial blast, providing we weren't within the direct kill-zone, but did nothing to prepare us for what we might have had to endure in the succeeding days.
Because, everyone, including the teachers, knew if actual war on that scale broke out, we'd ALL be fucked!
Yeah, try getting a good night's sleep with that thought rattling around your head...
I think that's why I grew up with a sort of hey, whatever happens, happens kind of attitude. Try to effect change where it's possible, but beyond that, you're pretty much at the mercy of...whatever!
Falco released the Euro-hit song "Der Kommissar" in 1981, in German. The following year he released a version in English. But both of those songs failed to chart in America at the time. The band After The Fire released their own English version of the song that was moderately successful, and it brought new interest in the original German version, which became a minor hit.
After The Fire's version is much slicker and marketable, which is probably why I prefer Falco's version in German. The music video looks super-low quality, even for early 80's sensibilities. Which is part of its charm.
Here's Falco - Der Kommissar:
BONUS VIDEO ACTION
I dug a little deeper (2 seconds on Google) and found the After The Fire version of the song, which is a lot cooler and more intriguing than Falco's original. But I still like the Falco version a bit more. Because I think he says "I miss my fucking friends" rather than ATF's safe-for-radio version that has the lyric "I miss my funky friends". But golly, we have a president that says quite a few nations are "shitholes", so I guess the bar for civility has gotten very low indeed!