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An introduction to Italo Disco


26-07-2023 • 1 hora 16 min

This is a rewind of an episode from 2021.

Today's episode is all about my favourite subgenre of disco and dance music - Italo. What it is, where it came from and why it's so enduring.

Italo disco is a European form of electronic disco that proliferated throughout Europe in the early '80s. It’s a catch all term for 80s electronic pop of mostly Italian origin.

Italo is what happens when disco starts getting made with drum machines and synthesizers - a loveable curio of romantic pop, a tasteless yet tasteful novelty item, A simple music born at a time when music was increasingly sophisticated.

Italo is big fun electronic pop music that doesn't take itself too seriously. It is time capsule of a generally more innocent time of bad dancers, keytars, moustaches and chrome-shimmering fashion.

From Vice’s A Bullshitter's Guide To Italo-Disco by Angus Harrison

Imagine, if you can, if somebody made a B-movie of the entire disco genre. Music so obviously emotional, it becomes inescapably affecting. This is Italo and its heartstring-pulling magic. It's not disco, in fact in most cases it's technically a lot worse, but there is untold charm in the chintz.

Niall and Andrea take you deep into how US disco morphed into Italo, how Moroder and Hi-NRG fits in, the characteristics of Italo disco, the glitz, the glamour and the keytars. Plus, we talk about the Nialler9 Podcast theme song - Red Dragon Band's 'Let Me Be Your Radio...

Patreon members get exclusive access to my 8 hour Italo Disco playlist featuring all of the songs played on this episode, which includes classics like

Doctor’s Cat – Feel The Drive

Mr. Flagio – Take A Chance

La Bionda – I Wanna Be Your Lover

RAF – Self-Control

Ken Laszlo – Hey Hey Guy

Ryan Paris – Dolce Vita

Sabrina – Boys

and many more.

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