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Best Albums of the 1980s

« View best albums of the 1970sView best albums of the 1990s »

Listed below are the greatest albums of the 1980s as calculated from their overall rankings in over 37,000 greatest album charts.

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1980s decade summary
YearAlbums   The number of albums from each year featuring in the greatest album charts. Score   Total rank score for each year (made up of the total rank score from all albums in that year) Top Ranked Album   The top ranked album from each year and where it ranks in the overall chart.
19801,467281,817 Remain In Light (40th)
by Talking Heads
19811,504154,826 Moving Pictures (152nd)
by Rush
19821,493197,676 Thriller (73rd)
by Michael Jackson
19831,476178,920 Murmur (142nd)
by R.E.M.
19841,523242,536 Purple Rain (95th)
by Prince And The Revolution
19851,514189,510 Rain Dogs (109th)
by Tom Waits
19861,596266,288 The Queen Is Dead (21st)
by The Smiths
19871,763258,296 The Joshua Tree (36th)
by U2
19881,794242,526 Daydream Nation (56th)
by Sonic Youth
19891,851331,547 Doolittle (19th)
by Pixies
Total15,9812,343,942

The best artists of the 1980s were The Smiths, Pixies, Prince, The Cure, U2, Talking Heads, Metallica, The Stone Roses, Sonic Youth and R.E.M..
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Sort byOverall Rank | Number of Charts | Average Rating | Number of Ratings | Release Date | Title | Artist
RankAlbumArtist
11.


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Surfer RosaUnited States Pixies
Year of Release:1988Appears in:1,032 charts
Rank in 1988:2Rank Score:27,465
Rank in 1980s11Overall Rank:86
Average Rating: Top rated 85/100 (1,479 votes)
Comments: 93 comments
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12.

Master Of PuppetsUnited States Metallica
Year of Release:1986Appears in:935 charts
Rank in 1986:2Rank Score:26,858
Rank in 1980s12Overall Rank:91
Average Rating:  83/100 (1,362 votes)
Comments: 86 comments
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13.

Purple RainUnited States Prince And The Revolution
Year of Release:1984Appears in:1,025 charts
Rank in 1984:1Rank Score:25,923
Rank in 1980s13Overall Rank:95
Average Rating:  83/100 (1,189 votes)
Comments: 89 comments
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14.

Back In BlackAustralia AC/DC
Year of Release:1980Appears in:960 charts
Rank in 1980:3Rank Score:25,287
Rank in 1980s14Overall Rank:101
Average Rating:  79/100 (1,489 votes)
Comments: 112 comments
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15.

Rain DogsUnited States Tom Waits
Year of Release:1985Appears in:885 charts
Rank in 1985:1Rank Score:23,186
Rank in 1980s15Overall Rank:109
Average Rating: Top rated 85/100 (1,034 votes)
Comments: 66 comments
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16.

Hounds Of LoveUnited Kingdom Kate Bush
Year of Release:1985Appears in:892 charts
Rank in 1985:2Rank Score:22,986
Rank in 1980s16Overall Rank:110
Average Rating:  84/100 (907 votes)
Comments: 67 comments
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17.

GracelandUnited States Paul Simon
Year of Release:1986Appears in:839 charts
Rank in 1986:3Rank Score:20,364
Rank in 1980s17Overall Rank:126
Average Rating:  81/100 (1,035 votes)
Comments: 57 comments
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18.

MurmurUnited States R.E.M.
Year of Release:1983Appears in:858 charts
Rank in 1983:1Rank Score:18,626
Rank in 1980s18Overall Rank:142
Average Rating:  83/100 (1,069 votes)
Comments: 77 comments
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19.

Moving PicturesCanada Rush
Year of Release:1981Appears in:735 charts
Rank in 1981:1Rank Score:17,476
Rank in 1980s19Overall Rank:152
Average Rating:  82/100 (947 votes)
Comments: 65 comments
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20.

Paul's BoutiqueUnited States Beastie Boys
Year of Release:1989Appears in:648 charts
Rank in 1989:4Rank Score:15,535
Rank in 1980s20Overall Rank:174
Average Rating:  82/100 (799 votes)
Comments: 38 comments
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Best Albums of the 1980s composition

Year Albums %


1980 111 11%
1981 117 12%
1982 102 10%
1983 98 10%
1984 97 10%
1985 86 9%
1986 99 10%
1987 87 9%
1988 102 10%
1989 101 10%
Artist Albums %


The Cure 10 1%
Iron Maiden 8 1%
Rush 8 1%
Depeche Mode 8 1%
Siouxsie And The Banshees 7 1%
R.E.M. 7 1%
The Smiths 7 1%
Show all
Country Albums %


United Kingdom 420 42%
United States 391 39%
Australia 38 4%
Canada 27 3%
Germany 19 2%
Mixed Nationality 17 2%
Ireland 17 2%
Show all

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