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Top 100 Music Albums of the 1980s by Purplepash (2019)

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My favourite decade of music is 86-95.

Chart updated: 05/15/2019 10:45 (Created: 06/05/2017 01:10). Chart size: 100 albums.

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Sort byOverall Rank | Number of Charts | Average Rating | Number of Ratings | Release Date | Title | ArtistDate Added
RankAlbumArtist
1. (=)


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Surfer RosaUnited States Pixies
"With your feet in the air and your head on the ground"

My desert island disc. If I had only one album I could listen to ever again I would choose this. After over 25 years of listening to this album I still regularly play it and love it every time with no sign of ever tiring of it. My favourite band ever...I even have a Pixies tattoo.
Vamos is my beloved track, closely followed by Where Is My Mind?. Gigantic is a classic, Cactus is a favourite, and the 1-2 punch of Bone Machine and Break My Body is an awesome start to the album.
(First added to chart: 06/04/2017)
Year of Release:1988Appears in:1,052 charts
Rank in 1988:2Rank Score:27,693
Rank in 1980s11Overall Rank:87
Average Rating: Top rated 85/100 (1,514 votes)
Comments: 93 comments
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2. (=)

InfectedUnited Kingdom The The
"I was trying so hard to please myself,
I was turning into somebody else.
I was trying so hard to be myself
I was turning into somebody else."

This is one of those records that I just don't get how everyone doesn't see it's greatness. It is powerful and passionate, with fantastic emotive vocals and interesting post punky but accessible music. The songs are all constructed so well and the album flows like a story. Speaking of which there is a story being told here on both a personal and a political level, and if you get the chance to see the music videos that were made for every song on this album, in order, it all becomes so clear. It is a mixed media masterpiece. (music, video, short movies, long film). Great lyrics throughout.

10/10 songs: Seriously the first six songs are all perfect.
(First added to chart: 06/04/2017)
Year of Release:1986Appears in:103 charts
Rank in 1986:25Rank Score:1,174
Rank in 1980s307Overall Rank:1,900
Average Rating:  75/100 (111 votes)
Comments: 1 comment
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3. (=)

Violent FemmesUnited States Violent Femmes
"I hope you know that this will go down
On your permanent record"

A near perfect collection of teenage angst songs that are honest and relatable but a whole lot of fun at the same time. I was a teenager in the eighties when I first started listening to this sing along album and it always left me in a great mood.
Favourite tracks: Literally all of them, however I've seen them live a few times, and the first time in the early nineties they finished their show with Good Feeling and that was a perfect way to finish and one of my most memorable live musical moments ever.
(First added to chart: 06/04/2017)
Year of Release:1983Appears in:697 charts
Rank in 1983:2Rank Score:13,429
Rank in 1980s26Overall Rank:207
Average Rating:  82/100 (767 votes)
Comments: 59 comments
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4. (=)

DoolittleUnited States Pixies
"Got me a movie
I want you to know
Slicing up eyeballs
I want you to know
Girlie so groovy
I want you to know
Don't know about you
But I am un chien andalusia"

Quality album from beginning to end. I remember the summer of 89/90 my mate copied this album and Surfer Rosa on each side of a tape. I hardly listened to anything else that summer and played to everyone who would listen.

10/10"songs: A third of the album! Hey, Debaser, Wave of Mutilation, Tame, and Monkey Gone To Heaven
(First added to chart: 06/04/2017)
Year of Release:1989Appears in:2,099 charts
Rank in 1989:1Rank Score:83,186
Rank in 1980s1Overall Rank:19
Average Rating: Top rated 88/100 (2,390 votes)
Comments: 246 comments
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5. (=)

Strangeways, Here We ComeUnited Kingdom The Smiths
"Last night I dreamt
That somebody loved me
No hope, no harm
Just another false alarm"

Oh the feelings I get from these lines, and from the music, the whole song. Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loves Me is one of my favourite songs. Nearly all of The Smiths albums have been my favourite of theirs at some stage...they are all that good...but with the passing of time this is now the one I seem enjoy the most. Although I loved it from first listening when my mate bought it the day it came out.

Favourite songs: As well as Last Night... I love the emotional music, and the sadness of the lyrics, of Death of a Disco Dancer. Girlfriend In A Coma, is a brilliantly dark but bubbly pop song. I love the scathing attack on the music industry machinations in Paint A Vulgar Picture. A Rush and a Push... and Stop Me... are just such fun songs to listen and singalong to. And finishing with the moving I Won't Share You it's an album full of favourite songs.
(First added to chart: 06/04/2017)
Year of Release:1987Appears in:589 charts
Rank in 1987:4Rank Score:11,285
Rank in 1980s32Overall Rank:251
Average Rating:  81/100 (886 votes)
Comments: 55 comments
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6. (=)

Meat Is MurderUnited Kingdom The Smiths
"And when I'm lying in my

"And when I'm lying in my bed
I think about life
and I think about death
and neither one particularly appeals to me"

The Smiths were probably my first serious obsession, and one of, if not the most, influential band in the early days of my musical journey. I still listen to them regularly and doubt I'll ever stop.

10/10 songs: That Joke Isn't Funny Anymore, Barbarism Begins At Home, The Headmaster Ritual, Rusholme Ruffians.
(First added to chart: 06/04/2017)
Year of Release:1985Appears in:654 charts
Rank in 1985:4Rank Score:12,105
Rank in 1980s29Overall Rank:234
Average Rating:  82/100 (1,002 votes)
Comments: 54 comments
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7. (=)

The Queen Is DeadUnited Kingdom The Smiths
"t's so easy to laugh
It's so easy to hate
It takes strength to be gentle and kind
Over, over, over, over
It's so easy to laugh
It's so easy to hate
It takes guts to be gentle and kind"

The above lines are my favourite lyrics by anyone ever. They have had a lifelong impact on me. From an album full of great lyrics. I sing along to the whole album...every song.

10/10 songs: I Know It's Over, There Is A Light That Never Goes Out, The Queen Is Dead, Bigmouth Strikes Again, & The Boy With The Thorn In His Side.
(First added to chart: 06/04/2017)
Year of Release:1986Appears in:1,989 charts
Rank in 1986:1Rank Score:76,386
Rank in 1980s2Overall Rank:20
Average Rating: Top rated 88/100 (2,316 votes)
Comments: 215 comments
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8. (=)

GreenUnited States R.E.M.
"I'm very scared for this world, I'm very scared for me"

Document was my first favourite REM album, then for a long time it was Automatic For The People. But now this the one I enjoy revisiting the most, despite Stand ;) Actually Stand is not that bad for what is, a feel good upbeat song. But it's the fragile beauty of You Are The Everything, and the emotionally powerful The Wrong Child (such a sad song and a real grower) that keep me coming back. As well as the classic Orange Crush and all the other great songs.

10/10 songs: You Are The Everything, The Wrong Child, Orange Crush, World Leader Pretend, and Pop Song 89.
(First added to chart: 06/04/2017)
Year of Release:1988Appears in:364 charts
Rank in 1988:11Rank Score:4,233
Rank in 1980s92Overall Rank:615
Average Rating:  78/100 (529 votes)
Comments: 42 comments
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9. (=)

Sound Of ConfusionUnited Kingdom Spacemen 3
"Well, come on and let it happen to you
You gotta open up your mind and let everything come through"

Not their lyrics but they sum up the album. Two covers on this seven song album but both of them are arguably better than the originals. One of my most listened to albums of the late 80s that I still lose myself in every time.

10/10 songs: O.D. Catastrophe, Little Doll, Losing Touch With My Mind
(First added to chart: 06/04/2017)
Year of Release:1986Appears in:46 charts
Rank in 1986:67Rank Score:407
Rank in 1980s682Overall Rank:4,339
Average Rating:  79/100 (43 votes)
Comments: 1 comment
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10. (=)

The SmithsUnited Kingdom The Smiths
"Does the body rule the mind
Or does the mind rule the body?
I don't know"

I was a teenager in the 80s listening to alternative music so it sort of goes without saying how impactful on me, and how influential this album was. To this day I still try to get my mind to rule my body. The power of positive thinking.

10/10 songs: Still Ill, Reel Around The Fountain, Hand In Glove, What Difference Does It Make?
(First added to chart: 06/04/2017)
Year of Release:1984Appears in:741 charts
Rank in 1984:3Rank Score:14,492
Rank in 1980s23Overall Rank:193
Average Rating:  83/100 (1,135 votes)
Comments: 72 comments
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Top 100 Music Albums of the 1980s composition

Year Albums %


1980 8 8%
1981 7 7%
1982 4 4%
1983 6 6%
1984 9 9%
1985 8 8%
1986 13 13%
1987 16 16%
1988 20 20%
1989 9 9%
Artist Albums %


The Smiths 5 5%
Pixies 4 4%
The Fall 4 4%
Depeche Mode 3 3%
The Birthday Party 3 3%
R.E.M. 3 3%
Dead Kennedys 3 3%
Show all
Country Albums %


United Kingdom 46 46%
United States 43 43%
Australia 6 6%
Ireland 2 2%
Mixed Nationality 1 1%
Belgium 1 1%
Iceland 1 1%

Top 100 Music Albums of the 1980s chart changes

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