The Great Albums of the 1980’s

 

This list is all of the great albums I have heard in rock, in the ten year span of 1980-1989. No limit on number

 

 

 

2009 edition = 109 entries

2013 edition = 201 entries

2016 edition = 277 entries

 

 

 

 

 

 

new! = new addition

up – moved up the list since last time

down – moved down the list since last time

italics – 5 star albums

regular font – 4 ½ star albums

 

 

1.Daydream Nation – Sonic Youth (1988)

2.Miss America – Mary Margaret O’Hara (1988)

3.Warehouse: Songs and Stories – Husker Du (1987)

4.Double Nickels on the Dime – The Minutemen (1984)

5.Sister – Sonic Youth (1987)

6.Fire of Love – The Gun Club (1981)

7.English Settlement – XTC (1982)

8.Psychic…Powerless…Another Man’s Sac – Butthole Surfers (1984)

9.Life’s Rich Pageant – R.E.M. (1986)

10.Up on the Sun – Meat Puppets (1985)

 

 

11.Surfer Rosa – Pixies (1988)

12.The River – Bruce Springsteen (1980)

13.Shoot out the Lights – Richard Thompson (1982)

14.Zen Arcade – Husker Du (1984)

15.Our Beloved Revolutionary Sweetheart – Camper Van Beethoven (1988)

16.Remain in Light – Talking Heads (1980)

17.Skylarking – XTC (1986)

18.It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back – Public Enemy (1988)

19.Ride the Lightning – Metallica (1984)

20.Spirit of Eden – Talk Talk (1988)

 

 

 

21.Raising Hell – Run DMC (1986

22.Praire School Freakout – Eleventh Dream Day (1988)

23.Psychocandy – The Jesus and Mary Chain (1985)

24.On Fire – Galaxie 500 (1989)

25.Black Snake Diamond Role – Robyn Hitchcock (1981)

26.Atomiser – Big Black (1986)

27.Native Sons – The Long Ryders (1984)

28.The Days of Wine and Roses – The Dream Syndicate (1982)

29.Synchronicity – The Police (1983)

30.Hypnotised – The Undertones (1982)

 

31.The Serpent’s Egg – Dead Can Dance (1988)

32.Doolittle – Pixies (1989)

  1. Reign in Blood – Slayer (1986) new!

34.Document – R.E.M. (1987)

35.World Shut Your Mouth – Julian Cope (1984)

36.Blue Bell Knoll – Cocteau Twins (1988)

37.Wild Gift – X (1981)

38.Telepathic Surgery – The Flaming Lips (1989)

39.Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables – The Dead Kennedys (1980)

40.Malcom X Park – Unrest (1988)

 

41.Die Kreuzen – s/t (1984) new!

42.II & III – Camper Van Beethoven (1986)

43.Passion – Peter Gabriel (1989)

44.You Can’t Pray a Lie – Laughing Hyenas (1989) new!

45.Variations on a Theme – David Thomas (1983) new!

46.Positive Touch – The Undertones (1981)

47.Paul’s Boutique – Beastie Boys (1989)

48.The Law of Things – The Bats (1989)

49.A-Z – Colin Newman (1980)

50.Nail – Foetus (1985)

 

 

51.Murmur – R.E.M. (1983)

52.Original Sin – Pandora’s Box (1989)

53.Signals, Calls, and Marches – Mission of Burma (1981)

54.Flip Your Wig – Husker Du (1985)

55.Sound of Sand – David Thomas (1982)

56.Graceland – Paul Simon (1986)

57.Chris Issak – s/t (1987)

58.Up to Here – The Tragically Hip (1989)

59.Born in the U.S.A. – Bruce Springsteen (1984)

60.Black Sea – XTC (1980)

 

 

61.Swordfishtrombones – Tom Waits (1983)

62.The Big Heat – Stan Ridgway (1986)

63.Tracy Chapman – Tracy Chapman (1988)

64.Miami – The Gun Club (1982)

65.California – American Music Club (1988)

66.The Art of Walking – Pere Ubu (1980)

67.Mekons Rock n Roll – Mekons (1989)

68.1990 – Daniel Johnston (1988)

69.Gretchen Goes to Nebraska – King’s X (1989)

70.Zenyatta Mondatta – The Police (1980)

71.Underwater Moonlight – The Soft Boys (1980) up

72.Prayer for the Halcyon Fear – Tiny Lights (1985)

73.More Fun in the New World – X (1983)

74.Two Nuns and a Pack Mule – Rapeman (1988)

75.Robbie Robertson – s/t (1987)

  1. Hex Education Hour – The Fall (1982)

77.Rock for Light – Bad Brains (1983)

78.Crocodiles – Echo and the Bunnymen (1980)

79.Drifters – True West (1984) new!

80.New York – Lou Reed (1989)

 

81.Nothing’s Shocking – Jane’s Addiction (1988)

82.Short Sharp Shocked – Michelle Shocked (1988) new!

83.Children of God – The Swans (1987)

84.Spleen and Ideal – Dead Can Dance (1985)

85.Los Angeles – X (1980)

86.Confusion is Sex – Sonic Youth (1983)

87.Rembrandt Pussyhorse – Butthole Surfers (1986)

88.Peter Gabriel – III (1980)

89.Love Agenda – Band of Susans (1989)

90.The Lion and the Cobra – Sinead O’Connor (1987)

 

91.The Sin of Pride – The Undertones (1983)

92.Bound by the Beauty – Jane Siberry (1989)

93.Oh My Gawd – The Flaming Lips (1987)

94.Hallowed Ground – Violent Femmes (1984) new!

95.Discipline – King Crimson (1981)

96.Generic – Flipper (1982)

97.From Her to Eternity – Nice Cave (1984)

98.The Pretenders – The Pretenders (1980)

99.Fegmania – Robyn Hitchcock (1985)

100.Double Bummer – Bongwater (1988) new!

 

 

101.I’m Your Man – Leonard Cohen (1988)

102.Boylan Heights – The Connells (1987)

103.Flying Cowboys – Rickie Lee Jones (1989)

104.Hole – Foetus (1984) down

105.The Good Earth – The Feelies (1986)

106.Green Thoughts – The Smithereens (1988)

107.Fisherman’s Blues – The Waterboys (1988) new!

108.Violent Femmes – Violent Femmes (1983)

  1. Wasn’t Tomorrow Wonderful – Waitresses (1982) new!
  2. Cabin Flounder – Fetchin Bones (1985)

 

111.Kill ’em All – Metallica (1983)

112.Flowers of Romance – PIL (1981)

113.Hope Against Hope – Band of Susans (1988)

114.Guitar Beat – Raybeats (1981)

115.Psionic Sunspot – The Dukes of Stratosphere (1986)

116.The Queen is Dead – The Smiths (1986)

117.Heyday – The Church (1985) new!

  1. Fried – Julian Cope (1984) new!

119.Hole – Foetus (1984) down

120.The Power of Lard – Lard (1988) new!

 

 

121.Plasticland – s/t (1984) new!

122.Rain Dogs – Tom Waits (1985)

123.Damaged – Black Flag (1981)

124.Reprecussion – The db’s (1982)

125.Cloudland – Pere Ubu (1989) up

126.Plastic Surgery Disasters – Dead Kennedys (1982) new!

127.Boomtown – David + David (1986)

128.Silvertone – Chris Issak (1985)

129.Killing Joke – s/t (1980) new!

130.They Might Be Giants – They Might Be Giants (1986)

 

 

131.I Against I – Bad Brains (1986)

132.This Nation’s Saving Grace – The Fall (1985) new!

133.Killing Time – Massacre (1982) new!

134.Today – Galaxie 500 (1988)

135.Ocean Rain – Echo and the Bunnymen (1984)

136.Folksinger – Phranc (1985)

137.Get Happy – Elvis Costello (1980) up

138.Roman Gods – Fleshtones (1981) up

139.The Dream Of The Blue Turtle – Sting (1988) new!

140.License to Ill – Beastie Boys (1986) up

 

 

141.Vienna – Ultravox (1980) new!

142.New Day Rising – Husker Du (1985)

143.Paris, Texas – Ry Cooder (1984) new!

144.So Good It Hurts – The Mekons (1988) new!

145.Daddy’s Highway – The Bats (1987)

146.No Control – Bad Religion (1989) up

147.By All Means Necessary – Boogie Down Productions (1988) new!

148.Head Over Heels – Cocteau Twins (1983)

  1. Vs – Mission of Burma (1982)

150.Scratch Acid – s/t (1984) new!

 

 

151.Forever Breathes the Lonely World – Felt (1986)

152.Out of the Silent Planet – King’s X (1988)

153.Killing Time – Massacre (1982) new!

  1. Lovers Lane – The Go Betweens (1988) new!

155.Introduce Yourself – Faith No More (1987)

156.Learning to Crawl – The Pretenders (1983)

157.Cop – Swans (1984)

158.If I Should Fall from Grace With God – The Pogues (1988) new!

159.Frontier Days – The Del Lords (1984)

160.Bad Brains – Bad Brains (1982)

 

 

161.The Colour of Spring – Talk Talk (1986)

162.Bring the Family – John Hiatt (1987)

163.Juju Music – King Sunny Ade (1982) new!

164.Big Soul – Original Sins (1987)

165.Signals – Rush (1982) new!

166.Half Mute – Tuxedomoon (1980)

167.Jettison – Naked Raygun (1988) new!

168.Reckoning – R.E.M. (1984)

169.Lincoln – They Might Be Giants (1988)

  1. Drum – Hugo Largo (1987)

 

 

171.Songs about Fucking – Big Black (1987)

172.Starfish – The Church (1988)

173.Honky Tonk Angel – Patti Loveless (1988) new!

174.Beautiful Vision – Van Morrison (1982) new!

175.Hear it Is – The Flaming Lips (1986)

176.Speaking in Tounges – Talking Heads (1983)

  1. X – Under the Big Black Sun (1983) up

178.The Wonderful and Frightening World of the Fall – The Fall (1984) new!

179.The Land of Rape and Honey – Ministry (1988)

180.Too Tough to Die – Ramones (1984) new!

 

 

181.Especially for You – The Smithereens (1986)

182.My Life in the Bush of Ghosts – Bryne and Eno (1981)

183.Telephone Free Landslide Victory – Camper Van Beethoven (1985)

184.Songs the Lord Taught Us – The Cramps (1980)

185.Walk Among Us – Misfits (1982) new!

186.Translate Slowly – The Reivers (1985)

187.Suffer – Bad Religion (1988)

188.Hazel’s Wreath – Tiny Lights (1988) new!

189.The Ascension – Glen Branca (1981) new!

190.Jamboree – Beat Happening (1988)

 

 

191.Closer – Joy Division (1980)

192.Mama Africa – Peter Tosh (1983)

193.How Will the Wolf Survive? – Los Lobos (1984)

194.Camper Van Beethoven – Camper Van Beethoven (1986)

195.3 Feet High and Rising – De La Soul (1989) new!

196.Marshall Crenshaw – s/t (1985) new!

197.Back in Black – AC/DC (1980)

198.Death Travels West – The Embarrassment (1983) new!

199.Dead Can Dance – s/t (1984)

200.Too Much Sleep – Bongwater (1989) new!

 

 

 

201.Of Skins and Heart – The Church (1981)

202.Only Life – The Feelies (1988)

203.Monster Walks the Winter Lake – David Thomas (1986) new!

204.Emergency Third Rail Power Trip – Rain Parade (1983)

205.Trust – Elvis Costello (1981) new!

206.Crossroads – Tracy Chapman (1989) new!

207.The Trinity Sessions – Cowboy Junkies (1988)

208.Yo Bum Rush the Show – Public Enemy (1987)

209.Meat Puppets II – The Meat Puppets (1984)

210.Death Of Innocence – Legal Weapon (1982) new!

 

 

211.The Firstborn is Dead – Nice Cave (1985)

212.Hand of Kindness – Richard Thompson (1983)

213.Glass Houses – Billy Joel (1980)

214.Oh Mercy – Bob Dylan (1989) new!

215.Hearts and Bones – Paul Simon (1983)

216.Candy Apple Grey – Husker Du (1986)

217.Black Metal – Venom (1982) new!

218.Suzanne Vega – s/t (1985)

219.Viva Hate – Morrissey (1988) new!

220.Run DMC – s/t (1984) down

 

221.Seance – The Church (1983)

222.Stands for Decibles – The db’s (1981)

223.All About Eve – s/t (1988) new!

224.13 – Lydia Lunch (1982) new!

225.Wild Planet – B52’s (1980) new!

226.Gone Fishin – Flipper (1984)

227.I Often Dream of Trains – Robyn Hitchcock (1984) down

228.The Stone Roses – The Stone Roses (1989)

229.Call of the West – Wall of Voodoo (1982) down

230.Sandinista – The Clash (1980)

 

231.Amnesia – Richard Thompson (1988)

232.Rites of Spring – s/t (1985)

233.Avalon – Roxy Music (1982) new!

234.How Much Longer Do We Tolerate Mass Murder – Pop Group (1980) new!

235.Evol – Sonic Youth (1986)

236.Litanies of Satan – Diamanda Galas (1982)

237.Signs of Life – Penguin Cafe Orchestra (1987) new!

238.King of Rock – Run DMC (1985)

239.Merry Go around – Laughing Hyenas (1987) new!

240.How Could Hell Be Any Worse – Bad Religion (1982) new!

 

 

241.President Yo La Tengo – Yo La Tengo (1989)

242.Key Lime Pie – Camper Van Beethoven (1989)

243.Guitar Town – Steve Earle (1986) new!

244.Ghost Stories – The Dream Syndicate (1988)

245.Fear and Whiskey – The Mekons (1985)

246.Paid in Full – Erik b. and Rakim (1987)

247.Triptych – The Bevis Frond (1988) new!

248.Thriller – Michael Jackson (1982)

249.Out of Step – Minor Threat (1984)

250.The Joshua Tree – U2 (1987)

 

 

251.In My Tribe – 10,000 Maniacs (1987)

252.Medicine Show – The Dream Syndicate (1984)

253.What Makes a Man Start Fires – The Minutemen (1982)

254.Tattoo You – Rolling Stones (1981) new!

255.The Speckless Sky – Jane Siberry (1985)

256.So – Peter Gabriel (1986)

257.Shadows – Gordon Lightfoot (1982) new!

258.Ambient 4: On Land – Brian Eno (1982) new!

259.The Smiths – The Smiths (1984)

260.Happy Come Home – Victoria Williams (1987)

 

261.High Land, Hard Rain – Aztec Camera (1983)

262.Pornography – The Cure (1982) new!

263.Like a Prayer – Madonna (1989)

264.L7 – s/t (1988) new!

265.Moving Pictures – Rush (1981) new!

266.Victorland – Cocteau Twins (1986)

267.Seven Waves – Suzanne Ciari new! (1982)

268.They – King Missle (1981) new!

269.Locust Abortion Technician – Butthole Surfers (1987)

270.Dancing to Restore Eclipsed Moon – Red Temple Spirits (1988) new!

 

271.Filth – Swans (1983)

272.Strictly Business – EPMD new! (1988)

273.The Splendor of Fear – Felt (1984)

274.Danzig – s/t new! (1988)

275.Black Candy – Beat Happening (1989)

  1. Rio – Duran Duran new! (1982)

277.3rd From the Sun – Chrome new! (1982)