'New Age' defines a constellation of beliefs that peaked in popularity in the '60s and '70s. Expect lots of crystal power, psychic dolphins, Atlantis, pyramids, good vibes, reincarnation, quantum consciousness and, above all, the Age of Aquarius, the funkiest, highest-vibration-in-the-spectrum Age of them all! Enemy of all that is bogus, mechanoid or square, friend to the chilled-out and open minded. Rarely depicted without tongue firmly in cheek in actual Aquarian Age media. Also the name for a kind of music. Very calm, peaceful, and deep, man. It often features a mix of electronic Ambient with World Music instruments and occasional vocals, singing something illegible in Dog Latin, Polynesian or Lakotah. "New Age Music" is more of a marketing term than any real connection to beliefs, however. Most of "new age" artists just play what music they like, and some are even angry about the term. See also New-Age Retro Hippie, Granola Girl, and the useful notes page.
ExamplesAnime and Manga
- Sousei No Aquarion.
- Also most of the more fantastic mechs from the Super Robot Wars mythos, most notably Cybuster & family, though in this case the New Age ethos of the plot is much more restrained.
- The... erm, "educational" film Unarius The Arrival. If you liked the film, you'll looooove the real-life (in a manner of speaking) Academy.
- The 1988 film adaptation of Isaac Asimov's Nightfall. Asimov distanced himself from this movie as much as possible.
- The horrible mangling of quantum physics that is What the #$*! Do We Know!?.
- Altered States takes sensory deprivation & hallucinogens and runs with it, kind of like what Jurassic Park did with dinosaurs & DNA.
- Enlightened features quite a lot of New Age thinking, as the lead character has used New Age philosophies as a way of rebuilding her life after a breakdown.
- Ambient as a whole is often used for New Age music purposes. Its relaxing sounds are often used during New Age classes, relaxation, yoga, massage or meditation.
- Minimalistic composers such as Terry Riley, Steve Reich, La Monte Young and Philip Glass have also created music that is very popular in the New Age movement.
- The album Songs Of The Humpback Whale, which contains nothing but the sounds of singing whales has been very popular soundtrack music to New Age fans and spawned a whole series of albums mixing sounds of nature with relaxing music.
- By far the most famous New Age musicians are Kate Bush, Kitaro and Enya. Artists like Brian Eno (Ambient 1: Music For Airports, Apollo: Atmospheres And Soundtracks), Mike Oldfield (Tubular Bells), Wendy Carlos, Jean Michel Jarre (Oxygène), Cluster, Michael Nyman, Klaus Schulze, Popol Vuh, David Sylvian, Tangerine Dream, Isao Tomita, Vangelis and Gheorghe Zamfir have also made music that has been adapted for this purpose. It must be said, though, that not all of these musicians wish to be pigeonholed as solely making music for New Age believers.
- The Atlantis video games.
- Serenia in Myst IV.
- Ecco The Dolphin.
- Zak McKracken and the Alien Mindbenders is an unusual case. Although the game in its final form does poke a great deal of fun at New Age culture in general, designer David Fox originally intended the game to be much more serious in tone - in a brainstorming session, Ron Gilbert convinced him to go for the wackier atmosphere.
- Destroy All Humans! 2 featured a motivational speech by a hippie touting the coming "Age of Aquariums." Really.
- Child of Eden.