So delighted to be moving into the 1980s… AT LAST… and what an outstanding year it was for starters…
STRAIGHT OUTTA CAMDEN
This was the year that Tommy McGloin and his combo – El Thommo, Bedders, Woody, Chrissy Boy, Chas, Suggs and Monsieur Barso – truly cemented their status as all-time legends of the British music scene. Not too far behind were Adam and The Ants, The Fall and Joy Division, as London and Manchester retained their grip as the leading hot spots.
Britain’s 2-Tone revolution is in rude-health, with terrific albums from The Specials, The Selecter and The Beat as well as the aforementioned nutty seven.
It’s an exceptional year for Birmingham actually; The Beat are joined by fellow debutants UB40 and Dexys Midnight Runners – making three superb long play statements from the city, all told.
Other notable debutants in this year include Bow Wow Wow, Pretenders, Echo and The Bunnymen and The Teardrop Explodes, as the British New Wave scene continues to develop stylistically in avenues many and varied.
Stateside, Dead Kennedys, Ramones, Captain Beefheart, Lydia Lunch and The Cramps are where it’s at.
After 15 years of the Rhodesian Bush War, Zimbabwe dances to the sound of independence and first-class LPs from Thomas Mapfumo and The Blacks Unlimited and Flavian Nyathi and Blues Revolution commemorate the declaration of the new Republic in April ’80.
For me, 1980 overtakes 1967 as the greatest year for albums to date; the ratings are stronger in-depth at every turn, whether in terms of the Top 10, Top 30 or Top 50.
Check out the Top 30 reviews in my Album Chart of 1980.