The 8 best synth-pop anthems, according to Light Asylum

Brooklyn's fiercest synth-pop duo on the songs that made them the band they are today.

New York’s Light Asylum are singer/drummer Shannon Funchess and synth player Bruno Coviello, two musicians united in a love of synth-pop’s industrial past. They’ve just released their self-titled debut album on Mexican Summer and are currently on tour in Australia. Here they share the synth-pop, house and electro anthems that shaped their sound. Listen as you read with our YouTube playlist below.

  1. Heaven 17 Let Me Go
    Shannon Funchess: “That’s a great song. I probably first heard it dancing at a club as a teenager somewhere, late teens. It’s so emotional but it had guitars on it too and these really big swells, very anthemic and epic. It’s dark but really hopeful which is the music that really inspired me to make the music I’m making now.”
  2. Adonis No Way Back
    Bruno Coviello: “It’s actually an old Chicago house track. The bassline is so incredible and it always sounds good on a dancefloor. It could kill any track right now but it was made in the late 80s. I grew up listening to house music so I remember my older brother playing it.”
  3. Depeche Mode Black Celebration
    Shannon: “Just huge – a big anthemic, synth-popping-in-your-face that makes you want to die but at the same time fly. Huge. They’re still killing it 30 years laters. That’s where it’s at – that vision and perseverance is incredible. That would bring anyone to tears.”
  4. Nine Inch Nails Head Like A Hole
    Bruno: “I was always a big Nine Inch Nails fan, it’s got that really throbbing bassline and obviously the lyrics for a teenager, you can’t help but sing along and get into that feeling of ‘no, I’m not going to bow down’.”
  5. Sisters Of Mercy Dominion
    Shannon: “It’s just huge; an anthem.”
  6. New Order Blue Monday
    Bruno: “I have to throw New Order in there. Blue Monday is one of the amazing songs every written. My older brother is ten years older than me so as early as seven or eight years old I was listening to dance music, I had a really good opportunity sharing a bedroom with him to hear all this music from a club environment.”
  7. Ministry I Wanted To Tell Her
    Shannon: “I first heard it dancing in a nightclub in Scottown, Washington. I snuck out of the house. You could stare at your shoes and do this little goth dance. There are so many good Ministry songs. Early Ministry was really electric bass driven and funky and groovy. More dancey and sensual than their later stuff.”
  8. Donna Summer I Feel Love
    Bruno: “Giorgio Moroder is a huge hero of mine. Anything he’s done I love; he’s one of the originators of electro. Along with Kraftwerk, of course.”

Mexican Summer released ‘Light Asylum’ on 1st May 2012

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