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  • Synthpop is a genre of popular music that first became prominent in the 1980s, features the synthesizer as the dominant musical instrument. It was prefigured in the 1960s and early 1970s by the use of synthesizers in progressive rock, electronic art rock, disco and particularly the "Krautrock" of bands like Kraftwerk. It arose as a distinct genre in Japan and the United Kingdom in the post-punk era as part of the new wave movement of the late-1970s to the mid-1980s. Early synthpop pioneers included Japanese group Yellow Magic Orchestra and British bands Ultravox and The Human League; the latter largely used monophonic synthesizers to produce music with a simple and austere sound. After the breakthrough of Tubeway Army and Gary Numan in the British Singles Chart, large numbers of artists began to enjoy success with a synthesizer-based sound in the early 1980s, including Soft Cell, Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, Sparks and Depeche Mode in the United Kingdom, while in Japan, Yellow Magic Orchestra's success opened the way for synthpop bands such as P-Model, Plastics, and Hikashu.

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