10 best albums of the 1980s

The decade produced lots of excellent albums.
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No. 6 - Bruce Springsteen - Nebraska (1982)

Forget Springsteen being a rock god and leaving behind the bombast and commercial records such as The River. Whatever this album was supposed to be when Springsteen conceived the record, the album became something else. He recorded nearly the entire record in just one day at his New Jersey home. Later he would deliver the tracks to his E Street band but the songs did not truly fit for a complete band.

Instead, the decision was made for Nebraska to be a solo project with sparse, dark songs about the worst elements of humanity. "Johnny 99" and "State Trooper" could be stories from detective novels. This is not the kind of collection of songs that will get a crowd up and shaking their butts at a concert in a vast stadium. These are songs one listens to in midwinter late in the evening with a glass of whiskey and shades closed.

No. 5 - U2 - War (1983)

Sure, U2 would become the biggest band in the world after Joshua Tree was released in 1987. That record was brilliant. In fact, it is easy to forget that U2, a band that has now been around so long that gets some disrespect for some later choices, that the Irish group released three perfect albums with Joshua Tree, Achtung Baby, and War. The first of these albums, however, was War and was the last record before the band shed its more straightforward rock sound behind, but was also the reason albums such as Joshua Tree would one day be made.

Every single song on the record is brilliant, but the band leaves some of the religious references from their first two records behind - except for "40," which even while being so obvious in its meaning even the non-religious should find merit in the track - while there is more of a political bent. The record starts with "Sunday Bloody Sunday," after all. But a band of amazing musicians begins to reach maximum power for the first time on War.