How Good Was The Year (in music) - 1983?

What’s more, it was released in 1984.

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As was Talk Talk’s It’s My Life. :grimacing:

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Come Away with ESG is a great album. Been enjoying this one again - the basslines especially.


Sisters of Mercy — Temple of Love

Have obviously messed up my ID3 tags on a few songs at some stage. It’s My Life’s release in Jan 1984 comes close at least, but mid-1984 for Two Tribes is way off. Still a better song than Relax, imo.

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Album Nomination: Talking Heads - Speaking in Tongues

I love several TH albums but there’s something about this one that takes the cake. It might be part nostalgia as I remember some of these singles still getting a lot of air & video play in the mid-late 80s (long before I was buying their albums), but I think it’s just consistent. We’ve had “Burning Down the House” and “This Must be the Place (Naive Melody)” shared upthread, great songs, but I also love “Making Flippy Floppy”, “Girlfriend Is Better”, and “Pull Up the Boots”. Front and back loaded but the middle holds up really well, not a weak song on it.


Song Nomination: Tears for Fears - “Mad World”

Shared upthread but not nominated, it has that special warm nostalgia quality I can’t seem to ever tire of. I was tempted to nominate New Order’s “Blue Monday” as it’s not only one of the best singles ever released but one of the best dance tracks in the world, but “Your Silent Face” has been nominated. I’m also tempted to nominate The Cure’s “The Walk” as a more rock & goth take on the same vibe, it’s a really good vibe. Then there’s Suicidal Tendencies’ misunderstood punk classic “Institutionalized”, which is a stone-cold classic but maybe I don’t need to hear it as often. So here we are. There’s something warm and fuzzy about Mad World.


A shout out for the 1983 Tappi Tíkarrass album Miranda which I’ve been enjoying re-listening to.

This is the post-punk band Bjork was in before Kukl and before The Sugarcubes; they were featured in the Rokk i Reykjavik documentary.

She sings on all of the tracks on this album apart from the opener and closer. It’s good stuff and interesting I think to hear how the voice is very recognisably Bjork but generally sung quite straight with only hints of the vocalisations, inflections and the testing the limits of her voice that would come later.

Having a 1983 morning so apologies if I end up spamming this thread a bit.

Some Songs is the second and final album by the Swiss band Liliput (previously called Kleenex until threatened with legal action by the tissue barons). It’s an art-post-punk sound a bit like The Raincoats who they toured with.

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Nominate album - Cocteau Twins - Head Over Heels
Nominate song - David Bowie - Let’s Dance - his greatest ever song, perfect pop in every single way.

It’s definitely a singles year, 1984 was more of an albums year. Really hard not to nominate one of the early Smiths singles.


Women of the world, take over. Because if you don’t, the world will come to an end. And we haven’t got long.


Spoiler alert: they didn’t take over and the world is indeed coming to an end.

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I suppose at least the fellas have got somebody to blame now.

Yeah, this was high on my album shortlist, As was Sugar Hiccup as a possible song nomination - a wonderful track.

Big fan of Blue Sunshine by The Glove, the ‘supergroup’ collaboration for Robert Smith and Steve Severin as they took a bit of time out from the stresses of The Cure and the Banshees.

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That Suicidal Tendancies album is such and under rated classic.

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Good year for Sheffield music.

Kinda tempted to change my song nomination to this by Heaven 17. Truly great pop single. They played Tramlines back in the good old early days of that festival and I was beside myself when they played this.

Good Cabaret Voltaire album this year.

Some more Fascination from the Human League, with the 1983 EP they put out.

Comsat Angels tried to go commercial and get popular with their fourth album, not very successfully (not a bad album, though).

The first incarnation of Pulp put their debut album out.

Clock DVA’s album Advantage

Not to forget Def Leppard breaking through to the big time with their Pyromania album

And ABC put out their second album Beauty Stab, the follow up to the Lexicon of Love. Martin Fry had an ear for the occasional shit lyric but surpassed himself with “Can’t complain, mustn’t grumble, help yourself to another piece of apple crumble” on this single.


I’m sure I’ve banged on about Pat Benatar here before. I love her. In 1983 she switched from her rock sound to something shinier and more commercial. This single a prime example of the shift, with the original wistful ballad by Holly Knight and Mike Chapman sped up and given a power pop punch. It’s very 80s.


Cracking year all round, recently. None of these have been mentioned yet:

Imagine if all TV star cash-ins were like this.

Or if all ex-punks wrote songs as subtle as this.

I didn’t know until recently that the track Sugarhill’s house band ripped off for White Lines only came out earlier that same year.

Two top ten singles, an indelible look, then almost immediately disappeared

Elvis Costello rushed out a protest song for the general election under a nom de plume for label legal reasons.

Three men called John, an insistent drum machine and some agit-noisepop sloganeering

Tropical jazzy post-punk with two of The Pop Group and a teenage Neneh Cherry

And then there’s the B-52s. There’s always the B-52s.


One of the best of the year.

(The 1990 Beats International Dub Be Good To Me cover/reinterpretation was one of my formative musical experiences)

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Great video

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