Good 80s music

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Mike Broadman, Nov 29, 2001.

  1. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    How many people see the term "80s music" and cringe?
    Not only did it see the rise of synth-pop, hair-metal, prancing disco-pop one hit wonders, and video killing the radio star, but it also saw the artistic decline of some of my favorite bands, such as Jethro Tull, Genesis, Aerosmith, and Yes.
    Well, the 80s were not all bad. What diamonds in the rough do you remember or still listen to?
    The most important musical movement in the 80s for me was the new breed of heavy metal acts, that poisoned rock with lightning riffs, chunky guitars, and over-the-top vocals. Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth, and Iron Maiden began and reached their creative peaks in the 80s. Guns 'N' Roses picked up on the new music and injected it with the macho, immature posturing of the Rolling Stones and Aerosmith. "Welcome to the Jungle," Axle crooned before taking a hit, and accept his invite we did. While everyone else applied sick amounts of hair spray and jumped around to Cyndi Lauper, we who thought we were oh so cool would blast Master of Puppets out of our bedroom windows, much to the chagrine of our poor neighbors and parents. Fates Warning and King's X expanded on the hard rock of the 80s to create fresh, complex soundscapes for the new generation of aggressive music lovers.
    Rush hit their most creative stride in the early 80s with Permanent Waves and Moving Pictures. Despite some self-admittedly failed sound experimentation throughout the decade, they created some of the best pop-rock music ever in Signals, Power Windows, and Hold Your Fire.
    Frank Zappa was on and off throughout the decade, but Them Or Us and the live albums of his last tour rank amongst his best work.
    The Talking Heads and The Police brought about a new direction in popular music. Now it was OK for prog-snobs, jazzers, and musical outsiders to dig pop. Sure they had big hits, but they were good, gosh-darnit, and oh so fun.
    Guitar gods Yngwie Malmsteen, Steve Vai, and Joe Satriani wowed us with their technical prowess. Satriani even had good songs, and showed us that you could have pleasant, accessible and musically interesting rock music without vocals.
    One of the real gems of the 80s was Marillion. Building upon Genesis' 70s work, they created a unique sound with the introspective lyrics and vocal styling of Fish and their lush arrangements. His exit from the band brought about a new, more mature direction in their music, and went on to have a long, productive and brilliant recorded output that is strong and still around.
    Huzzah for the 80s, as long as you forget about almost all of it.[​IMG]
     
  2. John_Bonner

    John_Bonner Supporting Actor

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    Mike,

    I'm with you on most of the artists you mentioned. Hell, the rollercoaster of Rush music through the 80s could be it's own thread. Queensryche was very influential to me during these years as was Rush, Maiden, Gary Moore, Alcatrazz, Dio, Dokken, Helloween, Loudness, Van Halen, White Lion, etc.

    At times I also dug listening to what I call the "Cheese Metal" bands: Black N' Blue, Stryper, Kix, Helix, Winger, Danger Danger, etc...
     
  3. Bobby T

    Bobby T Supporting Actor

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    How about

    Van Halen

    Anthrax

    Iron Maiden with Dickenson

    Ozzy with Randy Rhodes

    Deep Purple or Rainbow

    Dio

    Dokken

    Great White

    Tom Petty

    Traveling Wilburry's(was this in the 80s?)

    edit- I forgot about the Scorpians
     
  4. Ryan Spaight

    Ryan Spaight Supporting Actor

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    Great post. The fact that you mentioned Marillion makes you my friend forever. [​IMG]
    Of course, U2 and REM put out some great records in the 80s, but that pretty much goes without saying.
    I actually thought Tull's Crest of a Knave was very good, and Yes' 90125 was also worthwhile IMO. (I thought Big Generator was pretty awful, though.)
    Everything Joe Jackson released in the 80s is good stuff. (Heck, everything Joe Jackson has released period has been good stuff.)
    Other worthy 80s rock albums, in no particular order:
    Warren Zevon - Sentimental Hygiene
    Pete Townshend - All The Best Cowboys Have Chinese Eyes
    Pete Townshend - White City
    Pursuit of Happiness - Love Junk
    Georgia Satellites - In The Land Of Salvation And Sin
    Rob Jungklas - Closer To The Flame
    Lou Reed - New York
    The Kinks - Give The People Want They Want
    The Pretenders - Learning To Crawl
    Smithereens - Especially For You
    Melissa Etheridge - Melissa Etheridge
    Ryan
     
  5. Darren H

    Darren H Second Unit

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    I've been on an 80's "college radio" kick lately. (Ah, the days before "alternative" became meaningless.) I pulled out my old Husker Du, Pixies, Sonic Youth, and Matthew Sweet discs. Good stuff.

    Mike, my first rock concert was the Rush Hold Your Fire tour. great show. Pretty crappy album, though.
     
  6. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    Van Halen and Ozzy, how could I forget?
    Uch, I shouldn't have mentioned Rush. Everyone always slams Hold Your Fire, then I run in and defend it. Ok, let's not get into a debate about Rush albums. Let's just all agree that Hold Your Fire was one of their best.[​IMG]
    Cool, Warren Zevon. It's so different from the kind of stuff I like, but I like it. I have a two disc anthology, it's got most of his stuff.
    I can't agree on 90125. Even Genesis did a better job of changing from prog to pop in the 80s, and I really dislike their post-Hackett stuff. Crest of a Knave has a few good songs, particularly Budapest, but I can't help but compare it to the awesomeness (silly word) of their earlier output, and the deterioration in his voice is too painful for me to hear.
    [Puts flame suit on]
    Ahem: REM and U2 aren't that good. Way overrated.
    [Flame suit off]
     
  7. Stephen L

    Stephen L Second Unit

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    I look back to 80's music fondly. Yes there was bands like Kajagoogoo but also great stuff like The Jam-Sound Effects.Good stuff off the top of my head were New Order,Husker Du ,Pixies ,The Church , Crowded House ,Peter Gabriel ,U2 ,Elvis ,Marshall Crenshaw ,Squeeze ,XTC ,Bryan Ferry ,The Smiths,Bowie(Scary Monsters).Hell even the trivial Haircut 100 turnedout a decent pop album with more substance than todays pop sellers like 'Nsync or Spears.
     
  8. TheoGB

    TheoGB Screenwriter

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    My favourite 80's album is The Empire Strikes Back. I think that says it all really. [​IMG]
    Actually, to be fair, I would never class Pixies or Sonic Youth as "80's". When you talk about a decade of music you really have to be pinpointing stuff that is 'of it's time'.
    Hence Led Zeppelin are definitively 70's as much as disco sounds, for me, because neither have much relevance now. You can listen to them but you know it's old and out of date.
    Bowie, however, sounds fresh and new. Dylan and Hendrix both live for the main, outside their eras. Hope this makes some sort of sense to people...[​IMG]
    I would therefore say that there is no such thing as 'good 80's music' otherwise you wouldn't need to clarify it as such. Similarly for other decades. However, the 80's suffered more than most by hitching itself to a technological train. How many movies look great until you happen to get that shot of the PC and it's a joke? [​IMG]
     
  9. Frank_W

    Frank_W Stunt Coordinator

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    OH MY GOD - you all forgot Duran Duran and Howard Jones!!!
    Oh well - I love these '80s retro's with only the New
    Wave bands that do not even cover what the decade was.
    Let's see ....
    Aerosmith made there comeback.
    Ozzy found Randy Rhodes.
    New Kids on The Block/New Edition continued the Boy Band phase.
    Kiss took off the makeup.
    Bon Jovi was born and so was the USA with the Boss.
    Metallica began
    ZZ top was still sharp
    Huey was the news
    Prince was a star
    Michael Jackson was somewhat normal
    Hair started (Crue/Poison/Ratt)
    AC/DC - Stones - The Who etc. kept going.
    By the way - I thought the '70 was what sucked [​IMG]
     
  10. Jon_B

    Jon_B Screenwriter

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    Thanks for mentioning Howard Jones. [​IMG] I love 80's music. But Not so much the hair metal bands.
    Jon
     
  11. Mark Lee

    Mark Lee Second Unit

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    If Poison and their ilk were the "hair metal" bands of the '80s, then surely Howard Jones belongs in the "hair synth-pop" genre or something, don't he? The man must have had a hole in the ozone all to himself....
     
  12. Frank_W

    Frank_W Stunt Coordinator

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    Mark - you are correct. Howard did put a ole with his

    name up there. I meant "Hair/Hard Rock".

    Damn, the guy in Flock of Seagulls put a hole up there

    too.
     
  13. andrew markworthy

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    Pet Shop Boys, Yazoo, Erasure, The Smiths (for them as like them), Matt Bianco, Elvis Costello, Thomas Dolby, Yellow Magic Orchestra ...
     
  14. Rey L

    Rey L Stunt Coordinator

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    Rick Springfield
    T'Pau
    The Bangles
    Simple Minds
    INXS
    REO Speedwagon
    Journey
    The Go-Go's
    Oingo Boingo
    I love 80's music. I could go on and on..... [​IMG]
     
  15. Philip Hamm

    Philip Hamm Lead Actor

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    Don't forget DEVO. Their 80's work, particularly "Freedom of Choice" and "New Traditionalists" is very important and very good music of the time. They were a very influential band, particularly with their social commentary and video styles. Definitely one of the better and more important bands of the era.
     
  16. Ryan Spaight

    Ryan Spaight Supporting Actor

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    I love Matthew Sweet, but he didn't hit his stride until Girlfriend in '91, so I can't lump him into 80s music. His two albums in the 80s are nothing like his later work -- lots of synths and "big 80s" production. His 90s albums, though, have some of the best guitar-pop songwriting anywhere. (BTW, his '99 album, In Reverse, is fantastic -- the closest thing to Pet Sounds you'll hear these days. [​IMG])
    No flames on U2 and REM being overrated -- I agree completely. I still think they made some great 80s records, even if many have been overexposed to the point of absurdity. (I still can't listen to side one of Joshua Tree -- who needs to hear "Still Haven't Found" again? I enjoy a listen to side two now and then, though.)
    Oh, and Neil Young's Freedom is an absolutely essential late-80s album. Forgot that one, along with Skylarking by XTC.
    Ryan
     
  17. Joseph Young

    Joseph Young Screenwriter

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    My biases will become very clear early in this post. I'm not a real fan of prog or hair rock. [rant] No offense! [/rant] If it makes any difference, I never felt I had a sophisticated ear and this is why i never got into prog. More power to you, I'm a new wave fan for better or for worse. [​IMG]
     
  18. Bobby T

    Bobby T Supporting Actor

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    Billy Squier

    Sammy Hagar solo

    Bonnie Rait

    Judas Priest

    The Stones
     
  19. Jesse Skeen

    Jesse Skeen Producer

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    Glad to see someone else still remembers The Quake- that station turned me on to a lot of great music. We had a station similar to that in Sacramento (KPOP) that only lasted about 5 months, it folded right when I was getting into it but luckily I could still get The Quake. I still have a tape of their last hour before changing formats. "Live 105" (always hated that name) was pretty good when they started, but always had a lousy signal that made it hard to get over here; last time I listened to them they sounded sadly watered-down, probably happened when CBS bought the station.
     
  20. David Egan

    David Egan Stunt Coordinator

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    There's an awful lot of 80's music I never want to hear again but certain Hits of the 80's cds sold on TV won't let me forget. Great bands like The Clash and The Jam flamed out way too soon and with the exception of King Crimson, prog rock was dead. Still, a few people produced quality music for most of the decade.

    Kate Bush - NeverForEver, The Dreaming, Hounds of Love

    The Stranglers - La Folie, Aural Sculpture, Dreamtime

    Siouxsie and the Banshees - A Kiss in the Dreamhouse, Hyena

    The Stones, Zappa, Todd Rundgren and The Who were all done writing great material but the real problem was the attitude shared by so many new musicians that learning how to play wasn't all that important. I gave a lot of this stuff a chance but Husker Du never recorded a decent sounding album and it took me years to figure out that Sonic Youth, with all their weird tuning and bad singing, was just full of crap.
     

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