Sticking again with a very well-known song with mainstream cred, let's have a look at The Eurythmics' "Here Comes the Rain Again", with it's video filmed up on the Orkneys, showing Annie Lennox wandering around in peasant garb with a lantern. This melancholy visual is a perfect counterpoint to the sounds of the song itself, and the lyrics.
While The Eurythmics' "Sweet Dreams" is arguably more iconic, I've always liked this one better. Now, I know that the point of this is synthpop, but one thing that I love about this song (relative to "Sweet Dreams") are the real instruments; the string sounds that add a very lush overlay to David Stewart's synthlines and Lennox's deeply timbred vocals.
One of the reasons that I loved the 80s music so much is that stuff like that was so mainstream. Arguably better synthpop is around these days, and has been since the 90s when the grunge wave pushed out all the old electronic bands, but where do you find it? (Actually, with the internet, that's not so hard these days either, but it used to be!) Having bands like The Eurythmics (and plenty of others) who were big mainstream successes while playing in an artsy "New Wave" style is part and parcel of what made the 80s so much fun musically.
Of course, there's a lot of music in today's mainstream pop world that's pretty overtly synthpop-like too (Lady Gaga, anyone?) but during the 80s it was all much more new and exciting.
At least I thought so. Of course, I was a dumb, somewhat provincial and ignorant teenager through much of the 80s, so what did I know?