Best Albums of the 1980s

Listed below are the greatest albums of the 1980s as calculated from their overall rankings in over 39,000 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.
19801,552288,561
19811,597161,784
19821,564203,896
19831,566184,978
Murmur (142nd)
by R.E.M.
19841,594249,438
19851,599196,365
19861,681273,423
19871,846267,411
19881,905247,355
19891,952338,165
Doolittle (19th)
by Pixies
Total16,8562,411,377

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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Year of Release:
1988
Appears in:
Rank Score:
28,169
Rank in 1988:
Rank in 1980s:
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Average Rating:
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Year of Release:
1986
Appears in:
Rank Score:
27,422
Rank in 1986:
Rank in 1980s:
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Average Rating:
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Year of Release:
1984
Appears in:
Rank Score:
26,035
Rank in 1984:
Rank in 1980s:
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Average Rating:
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Year of Release:
1980
Appears in:
Rank Score:
25,567
Rank in 1980:
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Year of Release:
1985
Appears in:
Rank Score:
24,935
Rank in 1985:
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Year of Release:
1985
Appears in:
Rank Score:
23,650
Rank in 1985:
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Year of Release:
1986
Appears in:
Rank Score:
20,812
Rank in 1986:
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Year of Release:
1983
Appears in:
Rank Score:
18,924
Rank in 1983:
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Year of Release:
1981
Appears in:
Rank Score:
18,218
Rank in 1981:
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Overall Rank:
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Year of Release:
1988
Appears in:
Rank Score:
16,084
Rank in 1988:
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Overall Rank:
Average Rating:
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Total albums: 1,000. Page 2 of 100

Best Albums of the 1980s composition

Year Albums %


1980 111 11%
1981 118 12%
1982 101 10%
1983 97 10%
1984 101 10%
1985 86 9%
1986 98 10%
1987 86 9%
1988 100 10%
1989 102 10%
Artist Albums %


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


United Kingdom 416 42%
United States 387 39%
Australia 37 4%
Canada 28 3%
Mixed Nationality 22 2%
Germany 19 2%
Ireland 18 2%
Show all

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