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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 38,000 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.
19801,522284,067 Remain In Light (39th)
by Talking Heads
19811,546156,843 Moving Pictures (152nd)
by Rush
19821,529199,864 Thriller (72nd)
by Michael Jackson
19831,518181,373 Murmur (142nd)
by R.E.M.
19841,557244,506 Purple Rain (96th)
by Prince And The Revolution
19851,557192,375 Hounds Of Love (105th)
by Kate Bush
19861,628268,573 The Queen Is Dead (20th)
by The Smiths
19871,805261,370 The Joshua Tree (36th)
by U2
19881,845243,798 Daydream Nation (56th)
by Sonic Youth
19891,901333,488 Doolittle (19th)
by Pixies
Total16,4082,366,255

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
21.

Paul's BoutiqueUnited States Beastie Boys
Year of Release:1989Appears in:653 charts
Rank in 1989:4Rank Score:15,305
Rank in 1980s21Overall Rank:180
Average Rating:  82/100 (816 votes)
Comments: 39 comments
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22.

Ride The LightningUnited States Metallica
Year of Release:1984Appears in:630 charts
Rank in 1984:2Rank Score:14,525
Rank in 1980s22Overall Rank:190
Average Rating:  83/100 (994 votes)
Comments: 60 comments
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23.

The SmithsUnited Kingdom The Smiths
Year of Release:1984Appears in:737 charts
Rank in 1984:3Rank Score:14,405
Rank in 1980s23Overall Rank:193
Average Rating:  83/100 (1,134 votes)
Comments: 72 comments
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24.

It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us BackUnited States Public Enemy
Year of Release:1988Appears in:640 charts
Rank in 1988:4Rank Score:13,845
Rank in 1980s24Overall Rank:201
Average Rating:  79/100 (789 votes)
Comments: 41 comments
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25.

Born In The U.S.A.United States Bruce Springsteen
Year of Release:1984Appears in:665 charts
Rank in 1984:4Rank Score:13,707
Rank in 1980s25Overall Rank:202
Average Rating:  77/100 (1,043 votes)
Comments: 58 comments
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26.

Violent FemmesUnited States Violent Femmes
Year of Release:1983Appears in:696 charts
Rank in 1983:2Rank Score:13,428
Rank in 1980s26Overall Rank:206
Average Rating:  82/100 (767 votes)
Comments: 59 comments
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27.

Let It BeUnited States The Replacements
Year of Release:1984Appears in:617 charts
Rank in 1984:5Rank Score:12,339
Rank in 1980s27Overall Rank:228
Average Rating:  82/100 (731 votes)
Comments: 61 comments
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28.

Brothers In ArmsUnited Kingdom Dire Straits
Year of Release:1985Appears in:626 charts
Rank in 1985:3Rank Score:12,332
Rank in 1980s28Overall Rank:229
Average Rating:  77/100 (875 votes)
Comments: 63 comments
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29.

Meat Is MurderUnited Kingdom The Smiths
Year of Release:1985Appears in:653 charts
Rank in 1985:4Rank Score:12,100
Rank in 1980s29Overall Rank:234
Average Rating:  82/100 (1,001 votes)
Comments: 54 comments
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30.

Sign 'O' The TimesUnited States Prince
Year of Release:1987Appears in:595 charts
Rank in 1987:3Rank Score:11,868
Rank in 1980s30Overall Rank:239
Average Rating:  80/100 (700 votes)
Comments: 40 comments
Buy album United States Amazon   Amazon MP3   eBay   iTunes   Use the iTunes, Amazon or eBay buttons to safely buy this item from one of the world's top online stores.

Best Albums of the 1980s composition

Year Albums %


1980 112 11%
1981 118 12%
1982 99 10%
1983 97 10%
1984 99 10%
1985 88 9%
1986 98 10%
1987 87 9%
1988 101 10%
1989 101 10%
Artist Albums %


The Cure 10 1%
Iron Maiden 8 1%
Rush 8 1%
Depeche Mode 8 1%
R.E.M. 7 1%
The Smiths 7 1%
U2 7 1%
Show all
Country Albums %


United Kingdom 414 41%
United States 392 39%
Australia 38 4%
Canada 28 3%
Mixed Nationality 22 2%
Germany 19 2%
Ireland 16 2%
Show all

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