Album Reviews of the 80s, Index
The 80s had a very wide range in music, so don't expect this page to contain
every album you liked from the 80s. I welcome submissions, so feel free to use the form
at the end of this page to add yours.
This page currently edited by: No One. Past editor: Vapor Trails, Rock 'n' Roll Fan
Album reviews sorted by performer:
Creatures of the Night, "KISS"
Review by: Eugol Dlareg
The hardest album KISS released to that point. This album is a face-melting piece of heavy metal that comes across with all the subtlety of a sledgehammer to your balls, and will peel the polish off your girlfriend's toenails at 50 paces. My favorite songs off this album are "I Love it Loud"(a concert staple), "War Machine"(a song that, believe it or not, was co-written by Bryan Adams), and "I Still Love You"(quite possible the heaviest power ballad ever written). The only thing this album had going against it was timing. At the time it was released, KISS's popularity was at its lowest, and this album, unfortunately, suffered.
Def Leppard, "On Through the Night"
Review by: Alan
The BEST Def Leppard album of all time. Screw High 'n' Dry, Pyromania, and Hysteria all together. This album features original guitarist Pete Willis and is the band's hardest rocking album, with no glossy track in sight. You won't believe me unless you've heard gems like "Wasted," "Rocks Off," "Answer to the Master," "It Could be You," and "Overture." Buy the vinyl/cassette/CD and enjoy one of the most definitive NWOBHM releases of all time! This was Def Leppard at their PRIME, before selling out and soon becoming washed up acts. The powers of Steve Clark and Pete Willis are VERY MUCH missed by the more loyal fans of this band. GETCHA ROCKS OFF!
Echo and the Bunnymen, "Ocean Rain"
Review by: Diana
Ian McCulloch's powerful vocals showed the extremes of a huge range. The band was in their prime lyrically, stylistically and conceptually. Whether haunting or happier, the songs and lyrics fit into a nautical theme. Rather than synthesizers, they included a lush string orchestra. It's a timeless work of art. Their song Killing Moon was in the opening of Donnie Darko. Plus, Ian McCulloch's peacock hairdo was something else.
Depeche Mode, "Speak and Spell"
Review by: Curt
Speak & Spell was Depeche Mode's first album, and in my opinion was their most unique in sound and great funky beats and synths. This was when Vince Clarke of Yazoo and Erasure fame was with them, and the music had a neat futurist sound mingled with New Romantic/Disco styles. (New Life) is one of my favs off this cd and was a big club hit in England in 81, also (Photographic) and "Just Cant Get Enough" which I consider the 80s anthem, and also Dreaming of Me which is my other fav. But check it out, it is worth the find and is so different than all their later albums, and much less gloomy too.
Wham!, "Make it Big"
Review by: Pedro Augusto
1984 was the year when Wham! made it big! Recorded in the sunny South of France, Make it Big knew 4 major singles 3 of them were number 1 in both UK & US charts. Wake me up before you go go, Careless Whisper and Everything she wants. Freedom, went number 1 only in the UK. Wham! changed it all for this album, the image and the sound. Since Make it big, they begun to sound like the old Motown songs, in the pen of George Michael. Wake me up was fresh, young and healthy. A pure new wave pop song of the 80's. Then the classic Careless Whisper, that won an Ivor Novello award for George in 1985. Make it big was a new romantic pop excellence and it is a classic today. Was almost completely written, arranged and produced by George Michael and it took Wham! to a different level of popularity and sells... George and Andrew Ridgeley were on the top. Like a baby was the other ballad of the album, with an half instrumental was the title track of Wham's tour through China the year after: Foreign Skies. A very good memory of the 80's new wave pop, with excellent songs and an excelent songwriter and music visionary: George Michael.
A Flock Of Seagulls, "Listen"
Review by: Erick Hublein
This is my favorite album for the New Wave era, It is funny how virtually the entire decade relied on syth drum machines and keyboards, this band, one out of many helped explore what early digital equipment could do, transfer affection being the best track, They are highly underrated, they were original, wrote there own stuff (unlike todays music scene in which virually everybody and there brother and sister samples each others work, boring, i hate most of this stuff they have anymore,) AFOS did there own stuff, then the 90's came in and shelved keyboards for kurt cobain, the 80's helped define the digital era, and the music was one of the first to help that, AFOS were definately apart of that. not just them, but they were one of them. I am a true child of the 80's, music was actually music, not all this rap and hip hop stuff,
Sigue Sigue Sputnik, "Flaunt It"
Review by: Martin Rossouw
This is one of the very few 80's groups that were at least 20 years ahead of their time! The most colourful clothes and hair in the 80's(neon pink and orange) But more about the album now. from opening track love missile f1-11, through 21st century boy and sex bomb boogie all the lyrics are about non-stop excitement and adrenalin rushing at you at 1000 miles per second! After Sigue Sigue Sputnik no group ever atemted their style of music or fashion or attitude ever again. Flaunt it is a must have album for every 80's child
Duran Duran, "Notorious"
Review by: Stewie
This is my favorite album of all time. The group was a trio but came out with their best yet in 1986. The title track was a #2 hit but all the songs were well produced and have "a matter of feeling" to them. My favorites were that song plus the soothing "Winter Marches On" and they save the best for last with "Proposition." The whole album has a much more mature sound and it just works. I never get tired of listening to this.
Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band, "The River"
Review by: Ray
I wasn't a huge Springsteen fan when this album came out on October 10, 1980 (I was 15 at the time). I was familiar with him, especially "Born to Run". I think I really knew him as “the guy who wrote Blinded by the Light as sung by the Manfred Mann’s Earth Band”. Hungry Heart was the first single released from the album and it really hit me for two reasons. One, I had just gone through a breakup with some girl and two, it was such a great song. The music was so upbeat but the lyrics were kind of sad. Every time I heard that song on the radio, I had to stop what I was doing and listen. I finally decided to buy the album and what an album! It was a double set covered inside with pictures of the band and the lyrics were included in the album! No more replaying a song over and over to decipher the lyrics. It was the fun rock songs on the album that caught my attention first, Cadillac Ranch, Ramrod, You Can Look and of course my all time favorite, I’m a Rocker! But as I listened to the entire album, I discovered another Springsteen, the reflective one who spoke about America through the eyes of regular people. Fade Away, Stolen Car and of course The River all spoke of people who hadn’t found their dreams and or maybe had dreams snatched away by fate, bad luck or lost love. This album made me a Springsteen FANATIC. How great is this album. I can proudly say that not only did I buy the album, I have also bought the 8 Track, the Cassette, the Compact Disc AND I have the entire album downloaded to my IPOD! If you want to start an 80’s album collection, you can’t go wrong by starting it with this one and if you have an 80’s album collection but don’t have this album, well your album collection just ain’t complete!
Weird Al Yankovic, "Weird Al Yankovic"
Review by: rufieohall
His first album and I really thought it was great. "Ricky" (A parody of "Mickey" by Toni Basil) was the song that got me interested in him in the first place. I first saw the video on MTV when I was really little and noticed that it was a parody. I didn't realize intil a couple of months ago that he shaved his mustache off to play "Ricky". WOW! "I Love Rocky Road"(A parody of "I Love Rock 'n Roll" by Joan Jett & The Blackhearts) soon followed and it was great video. I think his #1 song from that album is "Another One Rides The Bus".(A parody of "Another One Bites The Dust" by Queen)
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