Friday, January 17, 2014

Counting down the top 82 of '82 - Albums #55 - 47

A breakdown of my favorite albums from my favorite year in pop music

Donna Summer
Donna Summer
Peak on Billboard 200: 20
Peak in Cashbox: 14
Top 40 pop singles:"Love is in Control," "The Woman in Me"
Top track: "Love is in Control"

With Quincy Jones at the boards, this album should have been much better than it ended up being.  Still, the tracks that work are quite good, especially "Love is in Control" that gets me dancing every time I hear it.

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The Go-Go's
Peak on Billboard 200: 8
Peak in Cashbox: 5
Top 40 pop singles: "Vacation"
Top track: "Get Up and Go"

Narrowly avoiding the proverbial "sophomore slump," the girls bring us an album full of fun, summertime songs.  Belinda Carlisle's voice always hypnotizes me.

Three Sides Live
Peak on Billboard 200: 10
Peak in Cashbox: 14
Top 40 pop singles: "Paperlate"
Top track: "Paperlate"

I enjoy the live tunes from the Duke and Abacab albums, but the studio side got the most playing time on my stereo.

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Kissing to be Clever
Culture Club
Peak on Billboard 200: 14
Peak in Cashbox:  10
Top 40 pop singles: "Do You Really Want to Hurt Me," "Time (Clock of the Heart)," "I'll Tumble 4 Ya"
Top track: "Time (Clock of the Heart)"

This group's brand of fluffy, disposable dance tunes posing as New Wave pop catches my ear. I hate myself for liking them.

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John Waite
Peak on Billboard 200: 68
Peak in Cashbox: 195
Top 40 pop singles: None
Top track: "Change"

Waite's first solo release.  Side one's "White Heat" followed by "Change" may be one the best one-two punch album opening on this entire list.

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Business as Usual
Men at Work
Peak on Billboard 200: 1
Peak in Cashbox: 1
Top 40 pop singles: "Who Can It Be Now," "Down Under"
Top track: "Who Can It Be Now"

I was never a fan of the cutesy lilt of "Down Under," but "Who Can It Be Now" and Be Good Johnny" more than make up for that song.

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Time and Tide
Split Enz
Peak on Billboard 200: 58
Peak in Cashbox: 66
Top 40 pop singles: None
Top track: "Six Months in a Leaky Boat"

I never understood why these guys never made it big in the U.S.  Tim and Neil Finn definitely knew how to write some catchy New Wave tunes.

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Shabooh Shoobah
Peak on Billboard 200: 46
Peak in Cashbox: 45
Top 40 pop singles: "The One Thing"
Top track: "The One Thing"

I was a fan of this group immediately upon seeing the video for "The One Thing" on MTV.  Michael Hutchence was one of the best front men in rock and he brings it on every song here.

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Combat Rock
The Clash
Peak on Billboard 200: 7
Peak in Cashbox: 9
Top 40 pop singles: "Rock the Casbah"
Top track: "Should I Stay or Should I Go"

The main problem with this album is that it isn't London Calling.  That's a hard act to follow, but there's some good stuff, including my favorite Clash song, "Should I Stay or Should I Go."

CD Project

These are my personal top 82 albums released in 1982.  The following criteria was used on a very slippery sliding scale:
  • How often I enjoyed the album at the time of release
  • How often I've enjoyed the album over the past 30+ years
  • Overall quality of the album
Chart information is from the US Billboard charts for the top albums and "Hot 100" pop singles.  The top track for each album is solely my opinion.

1 comment :

  1. Damn, I forgot about the Split Enz, too. Love them Finns.

    Donna Summer's album was abysmal. Too many hired guns not enough quality material. In hindsight, we know her I'm A Rainbow, album which was shelved in favor of this one, was jaw-dropping in its scope and depth of material.

    I'm A Rainbow was the first CD I ever bought at Best Buy, purchased during a trip to Raleigh, NC in 1996.

    Gonna have to cite you for failing to relaize the full magnitude of the greatness that is Shabooh Shoobah and Combat Rock though. The opening side of the latter in particular is one of the greatest album A-sides ever, fella.