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Best Albums of the 1980s

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

Best albums by year or decade
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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
21.

Spirit Of EdenUnited Kingdom Talk Talk
Year of Release:1988Appears in:666 charts
Rank in 1988:3Rank Score:15,499
Rank in 1980s21Overall Rank:176
Average Rating:  84/100 (724 votes)
Comments: 45 comments
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22.

The SmithsUnited Kingdom The Smiths
Year of Release:1984Appears in:731 charts
Rank in 1984:2Rank Score:14,479
Rank in 1980s22Overall Rank:187
Average Rating:  83/100 (1,104 votes)
Comments: 70 comments
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23.

Ride The LightningUnited States Metallica
Year of Release:1984Appears in:620 charts
Rank in 1984:3Rank Score:14,382
Rank in 1980s23Overall Rank:188
Average Rating:  83/100 (962 votes)
Comments: 59 comments
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24.

It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us BackUnited States Public Enemy
Year of Release:1988Appears in:629 charts
Rank in 1988:4Rank Score:13,712
Rank in 1980s24Overall Rank:198
Average Rating:  80/100 (770 votes)
Comments: 41 comments
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25.

Born In The U.S.A.United States Bruce Springsteen
Year of Release:1984Appears in:653 charts
Rank in 1984:4Rank Score:13,642
Rank in 1980s25Overall Rank:199
Average Rating:  77/100 (1,021 votes)
Comments: 57 comments
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26.

Violent FemmesUnited States Violent Femmes
Year of Release:1983Appears in:692 charts
Rank in 1983:2Rank Score:13,433
Rank in 1980s26Overall Rank:204
Average Rating:  82/100 (749 votes)
Comments: 59 comments
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27.

Let It BeUnited States The Replacements
Year of Release:1984Appears in:604 charts
Rank in 1984:5Rank Score:12,292
Rank in 1980s27Overall Rank:223
Average Rating:  82/100 (713 votes)
Comments: 60 comments
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28.

Meat Is MurderUnited Kingdom The Smiths
Year of Release:1985Appears in:644 charts
Rank in 1985:3Rank Score:12,250
Rank in 1980s28Overall Rank:225
Average Rating:  82/100 (978 votes)
Comments: 52 comments
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29.

Brothers In ArmsUnited Kingdom Dire Straits
Year of Release:1985Appears in:615 charts
Rank in 1985:4Rank Score:12,028
Rank in 1980s29Overall Rank:231
Average Rating:  77/100 (851 votes)
Comments: 60 comments
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30.

Sign 'O' The TimesUnited States Prince
Year of Release:1987Appears in:580 charts
Rank in 1987:3Rank Score:11,685
Rank in 1980s30Overall Rank:239
Average Rating:  80/100 (680 votes)
Comments: 40 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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