Songs About Nuclear War from the Eighties, Index

During the eighties, the topic of nuclear war seemed to come up a lot. It was on the news frequently due to the arms build up under the Regean era. At one point I think there was enough fire power to destroy the world 100 times over (it's probably still something ridiculous like that though). With the end of the cold war all seemed fine, although recent events in India and Pakistan does help remind us that it could be triggered by almost any mad man who is intent enough.

This page currently edited by: Powerslave. Past editor: Speed Racer

Nuclear war songs beginning with: [Index] [A] [B] [C] [D] [E] [F] [G] [H] [I] [J] [K] [L] [M] [N] [O] [P] [Q] [R] [S] [T] [U] [V] [W] [X] [Y] [Z] [misc]
"Let's Go All The Way," by Sly Fox
Sitting with the Thinker trying to work it out
It's a traffic jam of the brain
makes you wanna scream and shout
Presidential party no one wants to dance
Looking for a new star to put you in a trance
Lets go all the way
Lets go all the way
Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah
Lets go all the way
Working in a factory eight days a week
Try to make dollar damn what a beat
Cartoon capers happen in reality
Rich man poor man living in fantasy
Lets go all the way
"Primeval," by Atom Bomb
Time has come for all to know, evil rules on earth.
It's too late to stake your claim, it's all turned to surf
Primeval. Primeval. Burn...Burn...Burn.
"Flame of the West," by Big Country
Subtle lyrics talking about Pres Reagan and Trident nuclear weapons... ÂoeHis eyes were full of demons as he made his message clear
He strode the world like Caesar, and a Trident held his fear
"Protect and Survive," by Runrig
Now you search the open evening sky
Trace the memories in your eyes
For the prophet's hard rain and the deluge
Lie in tears around your door
Once there were trees and livestock here
A mother's love, the warnings clear
But you chose to turn away from fear
Once in a lifetime
You die
Once in a moment
The sun goes down
Protect and survive
"De Bom," by Doe Maar
The chorus of this 1982 #1 hit in The Netherlands translates to:
Because when the Bomb hits,
I'll be sitting in my good suit,
diplomas and my checks in my pocket,
with my insurance policies and my dictionary,
under the high rises of the city next to you.
Just drop the thing already, it's going to happen anyway.
It doesn't matter if you run.
"Time Will Crawl," by David Bowie
The whole song seems to be a reference to the effects of nuclear fallout/radiation on the environment and on living things
"Red Shadows," by T.S.O.L.
Something changed today
Everything is out of place
You said we had to go
Because you saw the red shadows
Close your eyes and it wont go away
You know the end is here today
Say goodbye turn your head
The time has come just like you said (Red Shadows)
I can feel the electric rain
The night won't come again
And your face, it has turned so gray
You wish it was yesterday, yesterday
Goodbye my love
I'll see you soon I don't know where
I don't have a clue
Don't look back, don't make the turn
They told me that these red shadows burn
Red shadows, red shadows
Tell me now it's true
Are these red skyies really blue
Tell me is it a lie
Because I don't see any sky at all
I can feel the electric rain
The night won't come again
Your face has turned so gray
We all wish it was yesterday!!!
"Tropicana," by Gruppo Italiano
An Italian early 80's hit. Set to a cheerful tropical music, the first part of the lyrics translates to something like this:
"What a strange dream
About a volcano and a city
People dancing on an island
A small jazz orchestra
Was playing Blue Gardenia
Water was slowly boiling to the east
The explosion and then,
A sweet, sweet atomic tan
Amidst the sweet, sweet music
Everything was falling apart
While the TV Kept telling
While the TV Kept singing <>."
I've always found the idea of the TV advertising soft drinks during a nuclear holocaust delightfully harrowing.
"Curfew," by The Stranglers
The enemy has cut down all of the power London south of the Thames is invaded
Westminster is razed down to the ground
The government has fled
The government has fled
The government has fled for Scotland today
It becomes black and white
Is it true what they say
They turn the day into night
Black and white becomes
"Atomic Playboys," by Steve Stevens Atomic Playboys
Well, the big boys meet on the Vegas strip
With the S.D.I. as the gun in his hip
There's a gleam in his eye as he shakes your hand and he leaves you
Selling plans alt to walk away and deceive you.
She's a shell shocked baby in the cradle of time
We're just a walk soft army on a human land mine
I'd walk a million miles far beyond the stars of your future.
I'd walk a million miles far beyond the hope of your future.
So ivory tower man was it part of your plan
Turn this city to sand
With a one way ticket to the Promised Land.
Atomic playboys we are radiation Romeos

You built this body but can't take away my soul.
Atomic playboys we are radiation Romeos
"Besuchen Sie Europa (solange es noch steht)," by Geier Sturzflug
The lyrics of this 1983 German pop song translate to something like this: "When submarines anchor in the Canale Grande,
and missile launchers stand on Saint Peter's Square in Rome,
a bomb capret floats over the bazaar of Ankara,
and a Pershing 2 lifts out of the hills of Mount Olympus,
then everything is far too late,
then it's not possible anymore,
so visit Europe while it's still standing.
When the Haute Cuisine turns into a witch's cauldron
where the cook from overseas flambeés his old world,
there will be laughter and applause because even the waiter gets a kick,
what's left to us except for culture, we hope you enjoy your meal. (...)"
"I Remember the Sun," by XTC
I'm thinking of the days we had
Enormous super powers
Yes I'm sleeping, my mind's on the blink
I thought a page, like it's written in ink
When I remember distant days
I remember many things, but
Most of all, I remember the sun
"Atom Drum Bop," by The Three Johns
Welcome to district no. 8.
Land of the American helpers
The security needs of the United States
Have written the great modern fiction
This is the jargon of playground brawl
Who is the toughest?
American tests and Soviet tests
The odd computer reads out death
As new missiles come in generations
New models to be sold like cars
A bomb, H bomb, Minutemen
The names get more attractive
Welcome to the land of the Tomahawks Missiles for American cowboys
Where our decisions are made by N.A.T.O.
The press call it British opinion
See the reports on the television
The decisions are already made
The a voice is the voice of the expert
Oh Queen Mother smile again
Welcome to the land of the mutants
Radiation and destruction...
"Listen," by Tears For Fears
Mother Russia badly burned
Your children lick their wounds,
their wounds
Pilgram father sailed away
Found a brave new world,
New world
"Strike Zone," by Loverboy
When the sun comes up in the dead of the night,
you won't escape from the blinding light.
Feel the blood running through your veins.
See the madness burning in their brains.
Nowhere to run.
No place to hide.
We're all along for that one-way ride.
"Behind the Barrier," by Planet P Project
"Get out of the pouring rain" (Ref radiation contaminated rain) "Get behind the barrier" Ref protection from the wasteland and radiation. The soldiers are walking dead (skulls)
"Test Ban Treaty," by Laura Monagan and Melissa Davis
This song came out of the Great Peace March for Global Nuclear Disarmament, a nine-month, cross-country walk from Los Angeles to Washington, DC. The Soviet Union had already stopped nuclear testing; the peace marchers called for the US to join the ban. The song is available as part of Monagan's online memoir at:
I want a test ban treaty under my tree;
I want a test ban treaty, give it to me.
I don't want no hat or high heeled shoes;
I want a gift that will make the evening news;
I don't want no diamonds or LTD;
I want a test ban treaty under my tree;
I want a test ban;
I want a test ban;
I don't want no wrappin', ribbons or bow;
I want the only thing sweeter than mistletoe;
Give it to the country, give it to me,
give it to the world and set us free
with a test ban, you know we really want a test ban;
I want my stocking stuffed with someting legit,
and a test ban treaty, well I know it would fit;
"Ignorance," by Sacred Reich
Evil minds bend on destruction
Ignoring the pleas of their race
The final chapter in humanic abduction
All signs of society erased
People asking fewer questions
Letting politicians do their thinking
Not questioning nuclear judgement
As warheads enter our space
Our atmosphere clouded with poison
We're killing ourselves to live
Filling the world with hate and dissention
We'll have only our lives to give
What we do now is the key to the future
We'll only have ourselves to blame
For arming the world with the tools of destruction
Our ignorance means death
Warring on opposite nations
Starvation amongst impoverished nations
Outlook bleak for the world residue
Ignorance of mankind
Clouding the world with residue Of man's toxic industry
Slowly killing nameless victims
Whose ignorance leaves them dead
Our atmosphere clouded with poison
We're killing ourselves to live
Filling the world with hate and dissention
We'll have only our lives to give
"Merry Minuet," by Kingston Trio
"For we should be tranquil and thankful and proud, for man's been endowed with a mushroom-shaped cloud; and we know for certain that some lucky day, someone will set the spark off and we will all be blown away."
"Good Day," by The Kinks
One of Ray Davies' zillion songs about facing up to all the reasons life gives us to despair, and taking heart in spite of it all. From the 1984 album "Word of Mouth." partial lyric:
Holes in my socks and I canâ€TMt find my shoes.
Itâ€TMs no surprise that Iâ€TMm singing the blues.
So many holes in my life still to mend,
And someone just said that the worldâ€TMs gonna end.
So today better be a good day,
Today is gonna be a good day,
Today has got to be a good day,
Good day, good day, good day, good day.
If we blow away the past with a bloody great blast,
Make it fast, make it fast.
So have a good day today because it could be your last,
Make it last, make it last.
Will it light up the sky?
Will it blot out the sun?
Well weâ€TMve waited this long,So it better be a good one.
Nuclear war songs beginning with: [Index] [A] [B] [C] [D] [E] [F] [G] [H] [I] [J] [K] [L] [M] [N] [O] [P] [Q] [R] [S] [T] [U] [V] [W] [X] [Y] [Z] [misc]

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