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NFT: Name an underrated band from the 1980's

Jints in Carolina : 2/5/2019 9:16 am
Could be hair metal, rock, blues, alt, pop, R& B, etc.

I have always thought the band Tesla was underrated as hell. They seemed to have gotten lost in the hair metal/glam metal decade. I love their sound of hard rock and blues and their music holds up today.

Some of my favorite songs from them include "Little Suzi" and "Signs".

Whatcha got?


Little Suzi - ( New Window )
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David + David  
Section331 : 2/5/2019 3:57 pm : link
Only had one album, but it is fantastic, Welcome to the Boomtown. One of the David's, Baerwald, had a couple of good solo records as well (Bedtime Stories is outstanding). Both of the David's were part of Cheryl Crow's Tuesday Night Music Club, and Ricketts wrote Leaving Las Vegas, although Crow claimed a songwriting credit for it.

I've always felt Husker Du was badly overlooked, tremendous band. I loved the Warehouse record.
best  
jurban : 2/5/2019 4:00 pm : link
eddie and the cruisers.....bennie and the jets
Husker Du  
kennyd : 2/5/2019 4:20 pm : link
(Bob Mould still doing great stuff)
Dinosaur Jr
Replacements (well respected but never had the commercial success they should have)
Joe Jackson
The Smithereens
Rockpile (late 70's but Dave Edmunds and Nick Lowe did great stuff in the 80s)
Los Lobos
Aztec Camera
The DBs
Don Dixon
Jason & the Scorchers
Meat Puppets
World Party
RE: The Cramps  
mattyblue : 2/5/2019 5:06 pm : link
In comment 14288259 Russ in Queens, NYC said:
Quote:
I Can't Find My Mind


The Cramps were fucking great!
My college era was 78-82  
Number17 : 2/5/2019 5:22 pm : link
in addition, I generally steered clear of the mainstream music at the time (Springsteen, Boston, etc) -- but have since "rediscovered" it.

So back then, I always enjoyed listening to lesser known music. So I think these fall into the 'underrated' category.

Anyway, some of the records I bought and enjoyed back then (I still have them and listen to them! ) include:

Garland Jeffreys
Dirk Hamilton
The Sports
Genya Raven
Eurogliders
Horslips (Irish rock) - probably 5 or 6 of their albums
The Shirts (Annie Golden lead singer - from Orange is the New Black)
Dave Edmunds (his big hit 'Crawling from the Wreckage was written by Graham Parker - who I already mentioned)
English Beat  
skifaster : 2/5/2019 5:39 pm : link
Special Beat Service is my 'marooned on an island' album

Big Audio Dynamite is the other band that should have been bigger :)
Dokken  
Koffman : 2/5/2019 6:23 pm : link
...
My Uncle  
Pete in MD : 2/5/2019 6:32 pm : link
was/is really into The Good Rats. They were from Long Island but I think had some National acclaim. I was too young to be into them but he always said they were underrated.
RE: best  
ctc in ftmyers : 2/5/2019 7:06 pm : link
In comment 14288267 jurban said:
Quote:
eddie and the cruisers.....bennie and the jets


Eddie and the Cruisers = John Cafferty and the Brown Beaver Band.
Link - ( New Window )
RE: English Beat  
BamaBlue : 2/5/2019 9:12 pm : link
In comment 14288376 skifaster said:
Quote:
Special Beat Service is my 'marooned on an island' album

Big Audio Dynamite is the other band that should have been bigger :)



Mine also... a very close second is Meatloaf "Bat out of Hell"
Pete...  
rnargi : 2/5/2019 9:15 pm : link
I used to see the Good Rats at the venerable Fore -n- Aft in Brewster, NY many decades ago. Great live band
The Alarm  
jpkmets : 2/5/2019 10:04 pm : link
Was fabulous. One of the best live bands I've ever seen..

Split Enz and Ultravox come to mind

Also thought Robert Cray would be huge after Strong Persuader. Never really happened.
Japan is another  
jpkmets : 2/5/2019 10:08 pm : link
Great 80's band. Loved David Sylvian's voice. They influenced the New Romantics like Duran Duran quite a bit. Sylvain's solo stuff is great as well. Particularly Secrets of the Beehive.
Iíll add  
LauderdaleMatty : 2/5/2019 10:08 pm : link
Social Distortion

And second

Triumph
Smithereens
Tesla
RE: Husker Du  
jpkmets : 2/5/2019 10:12 pm : link
In comment 14288292 kennyd said:
Quote:
(Bob Mould still doing great stuff)
Dinosaur Jr
Replacements (well respected but never had the commercial success they should have)
Joe Jackson
The Smithereens
Rockpile (late 70's but Dave Edmunds and Nick Lowe did great stuff in the 80s)
Los Lobos
Aztec Camera
The DBs
Don Dixon
Jason & the Scorchers
Meat Puppets
World Party


Loved Aztec Camera! High Land Hard Rain was great. Oblivious was a monster song.

Blow Monkeys and Haircut 100 along those lines.

Oh and Heaven 17. Let Me Go rules. Great video as well
RE: RE: Husker Du  
kennyd : 2/5/2019 10:22 pm : link
In comment 14288548 jpkmets said:
Quote:
In comment 14288292 kennyd said:


Quote:


(Bob Mould still doing great stuff)
Dinosaur Jr
Replacements (well respected but never had the commercial success they should have)
Joe Jackson
The Smithereens
Rockpile (late 70's but Dave Edmunds and Nick Lowe did great stuff in the 80s)
Los Lobos
Aztec Camera
The DBs
Don Dixon
Jason & the Scorchers
Meat Puppets
World Party



Loved Aztec Camera! High Land Hard Rain was great. Oblivious was a monster song.

Blow Monkeys and Haircut 100 along those lines.

Oh and Heaven 17. Let Me Go rules. Great video as well


They did a cover of Jump by Van Halen on a B side of something (probably Oblivious) that is just fantastic. So tongue in cheek but really well done. Very cool
RE: To name a few...  
BNY Giants Club : 2/5/2019 10:38 pm : link
In comment 14288030 EddieE said:
Quote:
OMD
Erasure
General Public
Joe Jackson
Squeeze
Oingo Bongo
Psychedelic Furs
Yazoo
XTC


Another vote for OMD. Saw them live in Boston last year and they were fantastic.
RE: English Beat  
pjcas18 : 2/5/2019 10:47 pm : link
In comment 14288376 skifaster said:
Quote:
Special Beat Service is my 'marooned on an island' album

Big Audio Dynamite is the other band that should have been bigger :)


Big Audio Dynamite, Big Audio Dynamite II, Big Audio, all basically Mick Jones and he was/is incredible. I think to link your two bands above Ranking Roger from the English Beat and General Public was in one of the incarnations of BAD. Maybe you knew that.

Rush might be the song played the most while I was in college. and Innocent Child was awesome (both of those by BAD II)
Zebra  
viggie : 2/5/2019 11:22 pm : link
owned long island
...  
christian : 2/5/2019 11:23 pm : link
Underrated I'd say the Melvins, Circle Jerks, General Public, the Polecats, the Blasters, Everything But the Girl, Electronic, the Pogues
Living Colour...  
Chris in Philly : 2/5/2019 11:46 pm : link
.
I'll take  
fkap : 2/6/2019 8:44 am : link
"successful bands that can't sell out a stadium" for 100, Alex.

Within their circles, most bands listed did quite well for themselves, often charting more than once on Billboard top 100, and being widely known. I don't think too many of them could really expect much greater chart/sales/popularity success considering their genres of music.

Still, I'm pleasantly surprised there were only a couple mentions of supergroups, like REM.

One who is widely known and respected, but who had less chart success than I would have expected is Adrian Belew. Then again, he only really surfaced with a couple of albums aimed at singles success and then dropped down below the mainstream. Had he desired, I'm thinking he could have fronted a stadium band instead of his Power Trio.
Already been mentioned above..  
FatMan in Charlotte : 2/6/2019 8:51 am : link
but two excellent musicians who are as versatile as they come are Joe Jackson and Elvis Costello.

Jackson probably would've stayed on top much longer if he wasn't so moody and difficult to work with.
I agree to a point with Dinosaur Jr  
pjcas18 : 2/6/2019 9:12 am : link
but they were really a 90's band even though they were founded in the 80's.

J. Mascis might be the more underrated musician of the 80's.

And it's hard for me to think about Dinosaur Jr without mentioning Buffalo Tom. I think they were formed around the same time in the same

Buffalo Tom also underrated.
RE: I agree to a point with Dinosaur Jr  
Greg from LI : 2/6/2019 9:16 am : link
In comment 14288687 pjcas18 said:
Quote:
but they were really a 90's band even though they were founded in the 80's.


Eh, not sure I agree with that. Freak Scene is probably their best (and best known) song, and that came out in 1988.
Reading through this thread,  
Beezer : 2/6/2019 9:18 am : link
I think my ballpark number would be about 60-70% of the bands listed were VERY popular in their time, and/or critically celebrated. I feel as though many listed are being listed as "underrated" when what might be more true - the fan listing the band wishes they'd been more prolific during their heyday.
RE: RE: I agree to a point with Dinosaur Jr  
pjcas18 : 2/6/2019 9:23 am : link
In comment 14288695 Greg from LI said:
Quote:
In comment 14288687 pjcas18 said:


Quote:


but they were really a 90's band even though they were founded in the 80's.



Eh, not sure I agree with that. Freak Scene is probably their best (and best known) song, and that came out in 1988.


I guess, but they were independent until the 90's, so I guess underrated is expected.

Where you Been was their US breakthrough. Start Choppin might be their best known song now. Start Choppin and Out there are both well known IMO.

Some great choices here,  
Section331 : 2/6/2019 9:54 am : link
but some are puzzling. I LOVE REM, but who thinks they're underrated? And Squeeze? They had a bunch of top 40 hits, hard to call them underrated. Both may be underappreciated, but not underrated, IMO.

One I'd add is the Undertones, with Feargal Sharkey on vocals, what a voice. A very fun punk-pop band.
I also want to point out  
Section331 : 2/6/2019 9:57 am : link
how fucking great it is to have Margi back, if for music threads alone!
re The Good Rats  
Number17 : 2/6/2019 10:38 am : link
they also played in NJ....At Art Stock's Royal Manor North (the North Brunswick location on Route 1). The Go-Gos played there too (at least once anyway).

I think its a car dealership now
RE: Some great choices here,  
x meadowlander : 2/6/2019 10:43 am : link
In comment 14288762 Section331 said:
Quote:
but some are puzzling. I LOVE REM, but who thinks they're underrated? And Squeeze? They had a bunch of top 40 hits, hard to call them underrated. Both may be underappreciated, but not underrated, IMO.

One I'd add is the Undertones, with Feargal Sharkey on vocals, what a voice. A very fun punk-pop band.
These threads always descend into popularity contests.

When Squeeze broke, they were touted as the next coming of the Beatles. Tilbrook and Difford were the new Lennon anb McCartney, PLUS they had the great Paul Carrack as a ringer. They were huge for a year or 2, BIG MTV footprint. The opposite of underrated, I'd actually go so far as to say that they didn't live up to the hype, a few good albums and kind of fizzled.
RE: I agree to a point with Dinosaur Jr  
timintey : 2/6/2019 10:47 am : link
In comment 14288687 pjcas18 said:
Quote:
And it's hard for me to think about Dinosaur Jr without mentioning Buffalo Tom. I think they were formed around the same time in the same

Buffalo Tom also underrated.


Good call. My cousin played in a band in HS with Bill Janovitz, and then later with his brother. They were big in and around Boston. Not that long ago Bill got to play at Fenway with Pearl Jam and did Taillights Fade with Eddie Vedder. Pretty cool.
RE: RE: I agree to a point with Dinosaur Jr  
ron mexico : 2/6/2019 10:49 am : link
In comment 14288695 Greg from LI said:
Quote:
In comment 14288687 pjcas18 said:


Quote:


but they were really a 90's band even though they were founded in the 80's.



Eh, not sure I agree with that. Freak Scene is probably their best (and best known) song, and that came out in 1988.


Not Feel the Pain?
Not many R & B groups...I will go with a British R & B  
fredgbrown : 2/6/2019 10:50 am : link
group...Loose Ends...
80's were a weird decade for Rock, no?  
x meadowlander : 2/6/2019 10:58 am : link
When we say 'the 80's', what comes to mind? Skinny ties? Hair bands? Synth Pop, Live Aid, evolution of massive stadium bands like the Police, U2, Springsteen? Guns and Roses?

It was a weird fuckin' decade.

And smack in the middle of it, I really though Rock was dead. Dark ages. Springsteen had gone commercial, the big 4 - Stones, Beatles, Who, Zeppelin were literally dying off. Van Halen broke up. Radio had lost itself - 86', 87', NYC FM Rock Stations were drifting into pop and dance music, drawn to huge sales by Michael Jackson, Lionel Ritchie and others.

I've always been drawn to new music, but for Rock fans, it was hard to come by. Radio was giving me nothing. Had to turn to college stations.

So when these late 80's underground acts started bubbling up, I was happy. Husker Du, Smithereens, Sinead O'Connors first great album...

There were a LOT of 'underrated' artists in the decade, simply because there was not much airtime devoted to Rock Radio anymore.
Feel the Pain was big at the time because of the video  
Greg from LI : 2/6/2019 11:02 am : link
MTV played it all the time. Still, in terms of lasting impact, I'd still say Freak Scene. It's in a bunch of movies, for example, and have you ever noticed Feel the Pain being used by anyone?
RE: RE: I agree to a point with Dinosaur Jr  
rnargi : 2/6/2019 11:11 am : link
In comment 14288845 timintey said:
Quote:
In comment 14288687 pjcas18 said:


Quote:


And it's hard for me to think about Dinosaur Jr without mentioning Buffalo Tom. I think they were formed around the same time in the same

Buffalo Tom also underrated.



Good call. My cousin played in a band in HS with Bill Janovitz, and then later with his brother. They were big in and around Boston. Not that long ago Bill got to play at Fenway with Pearl Jam and did Taillights Fade with Eddie Vedder. Pretty cool.


Completely agree, BufTom is extremely underrated and unknown to MANY who would love them, but they're really a 90s band.
Went to Boston to see them play at the Paradise last April, I think it was. J Macias sat in on a few songs, as did other Boston 90s royalty. This was their album release for Quiet and Peace. Really good album. I've seen them many, many times (I'm in several youtube videos in the front row at their concerts.) because my brother got to know them going to college with them at UMass. Love that band
RE: Feel the Pain was big at the time because of the video  
pjcas18 : 2/6/2019 11:30 am : link
In comment 14288868 Greg from LI said:
Quote:
MTV played it all the time. Still, in terms of lasting impact, I'd still say Freak Scene. It's in a bunch of movies, for example, and have you ever noticed Feel the Pain being used by anyone?


Start Choppin was a musical masterpiece. maybe didn't have the commercial success as other DJ songs or even in general, but it was better than any Nirvana song and Dinosaur was better at grunge and music in general than Nirvana, Pearl Jam, etc.

J. Masic was just too controlling. sounds familiar for rock bands.


There's a group I hesitate to mention...  
BamaBlue : 2/6/2019 12:22 pm : link
they were only popular in the 80's as an underground group in the Boston area... the Fools. They had a very brief sniff at MTV and still tour small venues today.

The Fools have a bunch of great songs that are typical 80's tongue in cheek humor on the their 1980 album, "Sold Out". If you're inclined and want a good laugh, check out their parody song of "Psycho Killer" by the Talking Heads... it's called "Psycho Chicken" by The Fools.
RE: RE: Some great choices here,  
Section331 : 2/6/2019 2:51 pm : link
In comment 14288839 x meadowlander said:
Quote:

When Squeeze broke, they were touted as the next coming of the Beatles. Tilbrook and Difford were the new Lennon anb McCartney, PLUS they had the great Paul Carrack as a ringer. They were huge for a year or 2, BIG MTV footprint. The opposite of underrated, I'd actually go so far as to say that they didn't live up to the hype, a few good albums and kind of fizzled.


The Lennon/McCartney hype was ridiculous, but they were still a very good band. Carrack was only on one album, the one with "Tempted" (which he sang with Chris Dilford). Argy Bargy is a terrific record, and holds up really well, when many albums of that era don't.
Should have said Glenn Tillbrook, not Chris Difford.  
Section331 : 2/6/2019 2:52 pm : link
Tillbrook sang most of Squeeze's hits.
Badlands  
steviej : 2/6/2019 4:01 pm : link
Jake E Lee great guitarist Album came out in 89 MTV played Dreams in the Dark
King Swamp  
FredDryer89 : 2/6/2019 4:50 pm : link
The good year pimps
Nektar - 70ís but played into 80ís
UB40
I'd go with  
santacruzom : 2/6/2019 6:19 pm : link
NOMEANSNO and the Cocteau Twins.
And I did not intend  
santacruzom : 2/6/2019 6:20 pm : link
To shout that.
RE: RE: RE: I agree to a point with Dinosaur Jr  
timintey : 2/6/2019 8:21 pm : link
In comment 14288880 rnargi said:
Quote:
I've seen them many, many times (I'm in several youtube videos in the front row at their concerts.) because my brother got to know them going to college with them at UMass. Love that band


Ask your brother if he knows Tom OíGrady. Thatís my cousin I was referring to. He was at UMass as well.
Talk Talk  
CardinalX : 2/7/2019 2:33 am : link
.
RE: Bjork / Sugarcubes  
schabadoo : 2/7/2019 1:05 pm : link
In comment 14287803 ij_reilly said:
Quote:
If you get to Reykjavik, check out the "Punk Museum". It's in a former public toilet. The exhibits are in the stalls. It costs about $10, maybe $8.50 at today's fx rate. It's good for 20 or 30 minutes, but they've got some great Sugarcubes stuff going on there.

Here's Bjork at 16 or 17 years old, prior to Sugarcubes.
Bjork killing it at 16 years old - ( New Window )


One of the enjoyable things seeing a band perform in Reykjavik is that, with everyone speaking so many languages, you see bands switching between languages song to song.
Saw some of you guys talking about Dinosaur Jr. above.  
Motley Two : 2/11/2019 10:47 am : link
25 years later...
#1 in Japan - ( New Window )
Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes  
PatersonPlank : 2/11/2019 10:52 am : link
I know being a NY crowd you guys know them, but the rest of the U.S. hardly did. I love all their stuff, and besides "we're Having a Party" (which is one of my least favorite songs they do) no one has heard much of their stuff.
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