Top 100 Albums Of The '80s (Nos. 81-90)

For this week's Ranked!, we've got one of our most epic editions ever: the Top 100 Albums Of The '80s. Did we get it right? Let us know!

Here are Numbers 81-90:

90. ZZ Top, Eliminator

Without question, the hottest car on the road in 1983 was made 50 years earlier. The iconic 1933 Ford Coupe that graced the cover of Eliminator and served as a chariot for hot women on MTV was easily the coolest thing on wheels and no keychain was complete without a shiny "ZZ" hanging from it. You wouldn't think three dude with Rip Van Winkle beards would become music video celebrities, but you cannot discount the awesome hat trick of "Gimme All Your Lovin'," "Sharp Dressed Man," and "Legs." Although those are the songs most people remember best, the rest of the album is all killer and no filler, packed to the brim with stunning Texas boogie like "Dirty Dog," "I Got the Six," and my personal favorite, "You Got Me Under Pressure." I'd still hop in that Ford Coupe if it pulled up in front of my house without hesitation. Wherever it's going is someplace I'd want to be.--CroutonBoy

89. REO Speedwagon, Hi Infidelity

Ya know, this was actually the top-selling rock album of 1981, but we'll blame that on a late November 1980 release. This was REO Speedwagon's ninth studio album, which makes it impressive based on staying-power alone. The album itself, of course, stands steady on its music. This may have been their peak, but what a peak it was. It brought the band to the mainstream (and no matter how indie you want to seem, this is where to make a bigger musical splash for sure) with hits like "Take It On The Run" and the power ballad "Keep On Loving You." I have always enjoyed REO Speedwagon for the way their songs completely seem to fit any car ride ever, blasted loud, and this album is the pinnacle of that collection.--J-Hawke

88. Nirvana, Bleach

Admit it: you didn't buy Bleach when it first came out. In fact, it was only after you thoroughly digested Nevermind that you decided to pick up its scruffy little brother. No worries. But when you did go about digging backward in the Nirvana catalog, you discovered Bleach was bleaker and less polished than Nevermind. But if you're like me, you instantly fell in love with tracks like "Blew," "About A Girl," "Love Buzz," and my personal favorite, "Negative Creep."--Chris

87. Aerosmith, Pump

This album was a pretty huge success for Aerosmith, a band that had already been around since the early 1970s and were doing ok. Pump, though, took them to the next level. It was a massive critical and public success and got them all kinds of awards and huge sales. It was actually their first Grammy award winner ("Janie's Got A Gun") and had the first Aerosmith song to chart at #1 ("Love In An Elevator"). On a personal note, I was baby sitting for a little boy when Aerosmith played Saturday Night Live in 1990. The kid I was sitting for was a hyper hopped-up little monster and got really into the "Janie" performance on the show. He did his best Steven Tyler impression and jumped on the couches, trying to make his mouth really big like Steven's. And then he started yelling, "Pull down your pants so I can sign your butt like a Cabbage Patch Kid!" True story. It was weird and creepy and kind of ruined Aerosmith for me for a long time.--Archphoenix

86. Various Artists, The Blues Brothers: Music From The Soundtrack

I first experienced this film in college in the mid 1990s at a Brew & View theater about three hours south of Chicago. It was filled with drunk college kids running up and down the aisles singing and dancing along. It was a pretty excellent introduction to both the film and the album. I swear that listening to Aretha belt out "Think," then hearing the Blues Brothers' version of "Rawhide," followed up with Cab Calloway doing "Minnie The Moocher" just plain makes every day automatically a better day.--Archphoenix

85. Poison, Open Up And Say... Ahh!

In hindsight, I can now see how this album basically took over my life as a teen. Poison represented everything I was not, but wished I could be: sexually expressive, heavy substance users (hey, at the time it seemed cool!), caring about nothin' but a good time, and confident to rock out as they please. This, their second album, did prove that they were more than a glam rock hair band. The songs on Open Up tended to be more hard rock-influenced and basically defined the eighties power ballad with "Every Rose Has Its Thorn," which showed their vulnerable side. My favorite track from the album is "Fallen Angel" because it told the tale of a young girl seeking fame and love in LA. If they hadn't sung about her demise, I'd probably would have jumped on a bus to LA and offered myself to Bret Michaels.--Robin

84. Adam And The Ants, Kings Of The Wild Frontier

I've always thought Adam Ant should've been bigger than Duran Duran. But to be perfectly honest, I had no idea who the hell Adam Ant was in 1980. It wasn't until two years later, when "Goody Two Shoes" was everywhere, that I became a fan. Kings Of The Wild Frontier didn't do much in the states, but it should have. It is quite simply a gloriously strange album. Two drummers! Several of the songs have a spaghetti western feel to them ("Kings Of The Wild Frontier," "Los Rancheros," "Killer In The Home"). There's also the near-dance of "Don't Be Square (Be There)" and the sheer brilliance of "Antmusic." Go dust off the album and give it another listen. There's a reason Nine Inch Nails decided to cover Frontier's "Physical (You're So)." --Chris

83. Sting, ...Nothing Like The Sun

For me, 1987 will always be the year that music changed for me forever. Or at least the way I listened to music. It was when I first made the leap from cassettes to CDs. And the first CD I ever bought was Sting's ...Nothing Like The Sun. Not only did I love not having to change sides and being able to shuffle the songs on an album, in '87 I was in the midst of a huge Police phase so Sting's seminal solo album popped at the right time. This album was a sonic departure from the artist I knew who fronted the Police. The rock/reggae was replaced with soulful and melodic tracks like "History Will Teach Us Nothing" and "Be Still My Beating Heart." I was drawn in by the jazzy riffs of "Rock Steady" and the pop beat of "We'll Be Together." I spent hours in my room, headphones plugged into my stereo, soaking in this album. Even today, hearing any song from it will automatically transport me back to that awkward teenaged time in '87 when music was my escape.--Daddy Geek Boy

82. Various Artists, The Breakfast Club Soundtrack

Easily the pinnacle of the Brat Pack movie craze, The Breakfast Club was one of many movies in the '80s whose soundtracks are like a time capsule of the pop music world at the time of their release. Although the track listing on this soundtrack isn't chock-full of singles like Footloose or Dirty Dancing, there's probably not a single song that evokes a movie more vividly than Simple Minds' "Don't You (Forget About Me)." Just looking at the track list, you might not recognize the other songs by title--but if you give it a listen, you'll recognize most of them. Definitely a must-have soundtrack for your '80s movie music collection.--Dave

81. Frankie Goes To Hollywood, Welcome To The Pleasuredome

What band would have the balls to cover Bruce Springsteen's classic "Born To Run" on their debut album? Frankie Goes To Hollywood, that's who. In addition to the Sprinsgteen tune, the band also covered Edwin Starr's "War," Gerry And The Pacemakers' "Ferry Cross The Mersey," and Dionne Warwick's "Do You Know The Way To San Jose." But it was the band's originals tunes, their music videos, the controversy surrounding both, and the overall vibe of debauchery that oozed from their pores that made them superstars. The album's big hits were the epic "Welcome To The Pleasuredome" the ballad "The Power Of Love," and "Two Tribes," with its insanely epic music video depicting a wrestling match between Ronald Reagan and Konstantin Chernenko. But it was "Relax," the thumping, pounding ode to gay sex that took America buy store and made half of the suburban kids purchase "Frankie Says Relax" t-shirts (which went nicely with their "Choose Life" tees), even if the meaning was lost on them.--Chris

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