Ten brilliant live albums from the 1980s

How did the1980s compare to the 1970s for live music albums? This list of ten great live records released in the 1980s will help you decide.
What are some great live albums from the 1980s?
What are some great live albums from the 1980s? / United Archives/GettyImages
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Legends with their live sets on record

Kinks - One for the Road

Another excellent live album that has a band showcasing their back catalogue, this time it's during a resurgence of their earlier musical career. The Kinks were at their peak in the 1960s but this double live set caught them on stage in 1979 enjoying a comeback to prominence again. It was released in 1980 and includes a few of their more recent songs backed by their classic hits.

Although many may think of the Kinks as a 1960s band, the album is a great reminder that they are much more than that. If garage rock is a thing, then the Kinks are amongst the top bands in the style. The great guitars, songs, and lyrics on their set here belong just as much in the 1970s and 1980s as elsewhere. It's no lame comeback, and this is the Kinks in top form. 

Eric Clapton - Just One Night

This is another album recorded in 1979 and released in 1980, so it only just qualifies for this list, even if the music was captured in the one prior. Interestingly, it helps show that perhaps not a lot has changed over the subsequent years. During May Eric Clapton is performing in his annual visit over several nights at the Royal Albert Hall in London. He’s pleasing the crowds with his great music, though he may not be completely dazzling them with his amazing guitar skills or creating an electric atmosphere. But it’s still a great night out to listen to and keeping fans very happy.

Just One Night is another example of that. Clapton was recorded in Japan in December 1979 for this double record released in 1980. He’s in pretty good form on the album, and it seems as though the backing band led by Albert Lee has kept him sharp and edgy at times. Clapton sounds brilliant on tracks like “Rambling Mind” and a super version of “Cocaine”, but the star spot is probably when he reverts to the blues on “Double Trouble”. Elsewhere though the album dips to what is still a very satisfactory standard, it's a good night in as a listen and a great album.