1. a movement, trend, or vogue, as in art, literature, or politics, that breaks with traditional concepts, values, techniques, or the like.
2. (often caps.) a group of leaders or representatives of such a movement, esp. of French film directors of the late 1950s and early 1960s. Cf. nouvelle vague. 3. (often caps.) a largely minimalist but emotionally intense style of rock music, being an outgrowth of punk rock in the late 1970s, typified by spare or repetitive arrangements, and emphasizing energetic, unpolished performance.