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Customer Discussions > Music forum

Best UNDERATED Groups of the 80's

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Showing 1-25 of 223 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Oct 24, 2012 9:18:46 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Feb 10, 2014 8:56:06 AM PST
No Micheal Jackson, Duran Duran, Madona, Prince, U2, Sting, Phil Collins, Def Lepard, Huey Lewis, Kenny Loggins, Eurythmics, Bon Jovi, or anybody along THAT line .

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 9:29:39 AM PDT
a-Ha gets my vote. They put out some really great music after "Take On Me", especially their last album which sort of brought their sound full-circle.

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 9:43:31 AM PDT
David Sylvian
The Church
Split Enz/Crowded House
Yellow Magic Orchestra
Talk Talk
Cocteau Twins
Siouxsie & the Banshees
Terence Trent D'Arby
Simple Minds
early INXS
early Level 42
early Depeche Mode
early Cure

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 9:45:08 AM PDT
Then Jerico
The Damned
China Crisis

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 9:51:19 AM PDT
B. rogers says:
The Psychedelic Furs

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 9:55:37 AM PDT
Randy says:
Big Country
Gear Daddies
The BoDeans
The Del Fuegos
The Blasters
The Del-Lords

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 9:59:11 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 24, 2014 10:15:57 AM PDT
Some of my own choices, for the record, are ... .. .
Midnight Oil
Dream Syndicate
Killing Joke
Lone Justice
The Motels
Rank And File
Early Smiths
Husker Du
I Am Siam
The Humans
The Cult
Jim Carol
Mental As Anything

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 11:08:58 AM PDT
CD Lover says:
No contest for me - Squeeze. Difford and Tilbrook were a tremendous song-writing team and they recorded many high-quality albums from the late 1970s through the the mid-1990s. They were an outstanding live act, as well, and I had the good fortune to see them twice during the 1980s. (I also saw and met Glenn Tilbrook solo once in the 1990s; he was a great guy and put on a heck of a show.)

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 11:23:56 AM PDT
EvenSteven says:
Lyres & Real Kids, Barrence Whitfield & the savages, Neighborhoods & Del Fuegos all from Bosstown MA
Los Lobos, Blasters, Jason & Scorthchers, Fleshtones, Vipers, Long Riders, Plimsouls, Nerves to name a few.

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 11:45:16 AM PDT
Fischman says:
#1 most underrated major 80s group=Triumph!
#1 lesser known underrated group=Shooting Star
#1 almost unknown group=Riverdogs

Honorable mention to Little America,

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 11:55:15 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 24, 2012 12:04:30 PM PDT
Johnny Bee says:
The Triffids
The Go Betweens
Violent Femmes
The The
The House Of Love
Wall Of Voodoo
Jim Carroll Band

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 24, 2012 12:06:44 PM PDT
Randy says:
Oops! I left Lone Justice off of my 80s roots rock list!

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 12:12:23 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 24, 2012 10:45:00 PM PDT
D. Mok says:
1. One 2 One
- The best songwriters in New Wave synth-pop, with the best singer, Louise Reny, whose vocal style would predict Gwen Stefani's 10 years later.
2. Wendy & Lisa
- Seems like more a marketing failure, because this duo had it all -- proficiency, an ear for melody, adventurousness, great vocals.
3. Shelleyan Orphan
- Caroline Crawley has one of the most gorgeous voices in music, and this duo's music is nearly impossible to categorize. A precursor to "chamber pop" or "baroque pop", eg. Belle and Sebastian.
4. Martika
- Dated machine-generated grooves hid the vocal firepower and passion of Martika, the best singer and songwriter in that teenybopper group of the late '80s. Tiffany is utterly forgettable, while Debbie Gibson was a gifted songwriter but sabotaged by her unversatile, chirpy voice.
5. Accept
- As good as AC/DC, just a whole lot weirder, and Udo Dirkschneider's German accent and non sequitur lyrics probably hurt. But Accept had some of the best grooves and riffs in '80s metal.
6. Throwing Muses
- Essential to the female-fronted college pop which was prevalent in the '90s. Also contributed musical DNA to *three* later musical entities: Kristin Hersh, The Breeders, and Belly.
7. Teena Marie and Taylor Dayne
- Queens of white soul, they don't get enough recognition.
8. Exposé
- A dance group with more brains than usual, and strong women on vocals.
9. Faith No More
- Remember, The Real Thing was released in 1989, making it even farther ahead of its time than appearances suggest.
10. Suzanne Vega
- Despite "Luka" and "Tom's Diner", she still doesn't get enough credit.

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 12:20:04 PM PDT
S. Stalcup says:
Virgin Prunes
Naked Raygun

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 24, 2012 1:27:38 PM PDT
Max Flash says:
The Replacements

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 1:43:40 PM PDT
zlh67 says:
LIVING COLOUR - They only put out one album in the 80's, but imo it was so far ahead of everything else that wasn't Prince, U2 or Springsteen that that's all they need to claim the title of most under-rated band of the 80's.

Runner up would be CONCRETE BLONDE. An excellent self-titled debut in 1986, a great follow-up in 1989 ("Free") and just after the decade turned, a true masterwork: "Bloodletting".

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 1:49:34 PM PDT
Fischman says:
While I spent much of the 80s deriding new wave and synth-pop at every opportunity, I more recently found this tremendously underrated gem (note: it wasn't packaged and released until 1992, but it was recorded in the 80s and has a full-on 80s sound and feel): Barbarian Lovers -- Dancing in Dreams.

This group deserved the recognition that was otherwise gathered by the likes of The Human League or Nu Shooz.

dancing in dreams

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 3:10:26 PM PDT
vivazappa says:
El Rayo-X (David Lindley)
The Mats
The Blasters

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 3:16:00 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 24, 2012 3:22:49 PM PDT
How are the Replacements underrated? They got plenty of attention and all kinds of great reviews.

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 3:42:42 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 24, 2012 3:43:01 PM PDT
vivazappa says:
They were as good as any 80's band but in my mind never got enough radio play, had enough people to support larger live shows and when mentioning great songwriters Westerberg is very often overlooked.

They did get great reviews though.

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 4:00:11 PM PDT
S. Stalcup says:
I'm having a bit of an issue with the Mats and Concrete Blonde being underrated. Every time they released an album, The Gavin Report had it in its college rock charts for weeks/months. Until two months ago, I had the videotapes of 120 Minutes to prove it. They named the high school in Heathers after Westerberg for Cthulu's sake. I love both bands. Regulars know that. zhl67 has my envy forever for meeting Johnette, but underrated? Nope, don't follow that.

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 4:27:07 PM PDT
zlh67 says:
Stalcup - underrated doesn't mean they have to be invisible, just not appreciated by the masses or at least not appreciated as much as their talent deserves, and I'd say that Concrete Blonde definitely wasn't. They may have been on the Gavin Report or 120 minutes, but they had all of 1 song on the mainstream charts ("Joey", peaking at #19) and live, they never rose above playing the small to mid-size venues (500-1500 people or so) except when they opened for Journey I believe after their first album. Poll 100 people on the street today and ask them to name a song by Concrete Blonde other than "Joey" and I bet 95 or so of them will either be unable to or will even ask you "Who's Concrete Blonde?!??"

And since we're talking specifically about the 80's, they were definitely underrated then. Two great albums but the first was mostly ignored and only moderate success with the 2nd one (and that on college radio, not really mainstream). They had their 15 minutes in 1990-92, but even that was mostly on the alternative scene, ie, not mainstream success (they had a few songs crack the top 20 on the Modern Rock charts during that time, but again, "Joey" was the only song to make any kind of dent on the mainstream charts).

If you were going to question either of my choices, I figured it would've been Living Colour. They won Grammy's and played stadiums opening for the Rolling Stones, but I still consider them underrated because imo anyway, they put out albums that were good enough to see them headlining their own gigs in arenas, etc. and the followup to their debut was the better album, but they are still known as the band that did "Cult of Personality." They never broke out of the clubs except for that one opening slot tour with the Stones. Like Concrete Blonde, most people think of them for one song and one song only when they have much better songs across several very solid albums.

And after splitting in the 90's, both of these bands have reunited and done some really solid work in the last ten years (particularly Concrete Blonde, releasing two albums that are as good as anything else they did in the 80's/90's and a double-live album), but all of it's been mostly ignored, ie, under-rated!

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 24, 2012 5:10:23 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 24, 2012 5:18:04 PM PDT
fartissimo says:
The dB's
Bill Nelson
The Bolshoi
Camper Van Beethoven
Meat Puppets
The Chameleons
The Comsat Angels
The Teardrop Explodes/Julian Cope
The Chills
The Clean
Deacon Blue
Death In June
Echo & The Bunnymen
Big Dipper
The Embarrassment
Eyeless In Gaza
The Feelies
Flash And The Pan
Flesh For Lulu
For Against
Game Theory
Gang Of Four
Gene Loves Jezebel
The Gun Club
Hunters & Collectors
The Icicle Works
The Jazz Butcher
The Jesus And Mary Chain
Kate Bush
Killing Joke
The Legendary Pink Dots
The Long Ryders
The Monochrome Set
New Order
Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark
Prefab Sprout
The Raincoats
Red Lorry Yellow Lorry
The Saints
The Soft Boys/Robyn Hitchcock & The Egyptians
The Smithereens
Sonic Youth
The Sound
The Waterboys
Ultravox/John Foxx

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 5:37:48 PM PDT
Brian says:
General Public

Posted on Oct 24, 2012 6:26:46 PM PDT
B-Jak says:
Farti- you got everyone I was gonna say except:
Camper van Beethoven's offshoot, Monks of Doom
Blake Babies
Lemonheads (early)
The Bears (w/ Adrian Belew)
Glad someone mentioned Lyres, Del Fuegos and Neighborhoods
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Discussion in:  Music forum
Participants:  91
Total posts:  223
Initial post:  Oct 24, 2012
Latest post:  13 days ago

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