作为一个风格名，极简潮（Minimal Wave）并不是一开始就有的。2000年后，同名厂牌Minimal Wave发行了一系列此风格的回顾合辑和再版，引发了一波复兴热潮，此风格名才正式确定。简要的说，它是新浪潮（New Wave）, 冷潮（Coldwave）,合成器流行（Synth Pop）和后朋（Post-Punk）等曲风的电子极简形式。
因Minimal Wave诞生于Midi（乐器数字接口）电子技术发展之前，使用的仍是较原始的类比合成器（Analog Synthesizer）和鼓机，所以其更像业余玩家捣鼓出来的东西，有低保真的特质，没有太多花俏。人声部分不拘一格，较疏离，冷漠。
Minimal Wave was coined as a genre name in retrospect. It makes reference to the most electronic and minimal forms of New Wave, Coldwave, Synth Pop and Post-Punk. In its most purely electronic and synth driven form is referred as Minimal Synth. It is also named as Synth Wave and Minimal Electronics (instrumental Minimal-Synth).
In comparison to mainstream Synth-Pop the Minimal Wave sound is sparse, amateurish, stripped down and lo-fi, using analog synthesizers, drum machines and pre-MIDI electronics. The singing is unconventional, with detached/cold vocals. Minimal Wave was mainly developed during the years 1979-85, specially in Belgium, France and Germany. Most bands kept a low profile and a DIY ethic, sometimes releasing self-published cassettes or limited editions by private labels. Since the mid-2000s the interest in the genre has become more widespread, with several reissues and new releases by labels such as Minimal Wave or Anna Logue Records.(By RateYourMusic.com)
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