Win Nick’s Voucher


Are you ready for another Friday music competition?

Last week, we rummaged through the seventies with great success.

This week, I want to know what’s your favourite underrated/obscure gem from the 1980s?

Here’s mine.

Reply below to be in with a chance of winning a lovely €25 Golden Discs voucher.

The winner will be chosen by my stylist.

Please include video links if possible and it would be great if you could say WHY you like the song.

Nick says: Good luck!

Lines MUST close at 2am 6am.

Last week’s 1970s winner here.

Golden Discs

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216 thoughts on “Win Nick’s Voucher

  1. Harry

    Tracy Chapman’s “Talkin’ About A Revolution” as relevant today as when it was first released in 1988
    “While they’re standing in the welfare lines
    crying at the doorsteps of those armies of salvation
    wasting time in the unemployment lines
    sitting around waiting for a promotion”

    Tracy Chapman Talkin’ About A Revolution

    1. Clampers Outside

      The guitar sound is very familiar… reminiscent of something else I can’t place… :/

    1. Slightly Bemused

      Go, put your headphones on, and listen to a random album from your collection. It may help you in this, but it will not hurt you either way.
      I suggest a nice G&T, but whatever you are having yourself :-)

          1. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

            Awwwww!!!! That’s a a gorgeous song.
            Awww. I’m not playing it: I’m singing it on me tobler. Wot a racket.

    1. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

      Jayz: I used to love old Ben Volauvent Peer-o.
      Did I try to tape ‘hey how you doin’ sorry you couldn’t get through’ onto me first mobile phone or did someone else I know do it? It’s all so goddam long ago.

  2. Friscondo

    When I first listened to Mary Margaret O’Hara’s Miss America in 1988, I assumed I was listening to the first of what was going to be a long list of great recordings from the Canadian singer songwriter. Inexplicably she only made one more album, years later. Anyway, here’s my pick from a stone cold classic

    1. Friscondo

      BTW, Mary is the younger sister of the great Catherine O’Hara in Schitt’s Creek, Home Alone and countless other roles.

  3. Sean R

    David Sylvian – Red Guitar (Brilliant Trees 1984)

    I first heard this after first hearing Gone to Earth (an earlier album from former Japan front-man Sylvian) at a chill out party and loved it. I was too poor to afford to buy a cassette of Gone to Earth but I saw a “Now” tape in a bargain bin with a Sylvian song on it so I bought it.

    I ended up playing the song on my 5 minute walk to work every morning, where I peeled spuds for most of the day in a Bistro in North Wales. I would rewind the song for the next morning so it became something of a weird anthem of my youth.

    (I never rewound it for the walk home because there was a pub next door to the Bistro)

  4. yupyup

    This Is England – The Clash

    Probably overlooked as it’s off the god awful Cut the Crap album. Such a great and accurate lament on what Strummer saw as the disintegration of his country. Personally, I haven’t been able to shake it from my consciousness as I look on with trepidation at what has been unfolding over there in recent years.

    1. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

      LOVED that album. Read a piece about him at the weekend, coincidentally. He’s still barmy.

  5. Liam

    I could also pick one of many many Camper Van Beethoven songs; they’re best remembered for “Take the Skinheads Bowling” but their image as a novelty band doesn’t do justice to their superb songwriting and eclectic instrumentation. This is from what turned out to be their last album (prior to a 21st century reunion):

    Camper Van Beethoven “All her favourite fruit”

    1. Rosette of Sirius

      My favourite song ever composed….. Bar none. Saw CvP (finally) in Seattle at the start of the year….
      Saw Cracker a bunch, but CvP just the once…

  6. Andy Pipkin

    I never thought this song got the recognition it should have back in the day, the band were amazing, but for some reason this song got stuck in my head for years! Hence the reason I’m posting it.


  7. Muchacho Gordo-Delgado

    O Superman – Lori Anderson
    This haunted me from the very first time I heard it. Hadn’t a clue what it meant (still don’t), but I know it’ll never leave my subconscious mind and I’m still transported back to 80’s late night FM radio when I listen to it.

    1. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

      Agreed. Absolute banger. And I’ve loved them since I first saw them on Saturday Superstore.

  8. Seamus

    New Gold Dream Simple Minds.

    Sounds as fresh as the day I first heard it in 1982, which is amazing because it was what the future sounded like back then. A band that probably doesn’t get the credit they deserve because of their later lurch to stadium rock, but this album was one of the finest of the 80s. Oh and the sample on Open Your Mind.

  9. f_lawless

    The Replacements – Can’t Hardly Wait (1987)

    This song could easily have featured on the soundtrack to one of those 80s classic teen movies – funnily enough it was used as the title track in a 1998 teen rom com “Can’t Hardly Wait”.

    It stands on its own as a great song though. One of my 80s faves

    1. Bertie Theodore Alphege Blenkinsop

      I went to see them in the cathedral club back in the day. Until I was unfortunate enough to go to a Supertramp gig, it was the worst gig i had ever attended.

    2. Friscondo

      The first flight I ever took was Virgin, Dublin-Luton and they were on the return. Assumed all flights would include a rock band thereafter. It’s been very disappointing since.

  10. Rosette of Sirius

    Was thinking of some Bauhaus or maybe for something properly obscure and thoroughly underrated, Slint.

    But mo. Can’t help myself. I have to go with Pere Ubu and Waiting for Mary from 1988. While I prefer their mid-70’s proto/punk stuff, their 80’s stuff was pretty neat too. I love David Thomas’s presence on stage and are bit bad live. Anyways. Pere Ubu.

  11. Mask Wearer

    I get the impression that a lot of contestants don’t understand the term ”underrated/obscure gem”.
    I know most of these songs and I think they’re good. That should disqualify them automatically.

    Anyway, while I’m here;
    Red Guitars – Good Technology

  12. Andy Pipkin

    I’m probably at fault for underrating this sublime bit of songwriting at the time it was released, now it’s more understanding and prevalent today.

    The vocals are amazing and so heartfelt, still gets me every time I hear it.

  13. Mr. P.

    I first discovered this tune through hearing the Kirsty MacColl version, I loved it, then I heard Billy’s original, I love the rawness of it.. and this verse:
    “I saw two shooting stars last night
    I wished on them but they were only satellites
    Is it wrong to wish on space hardware
    I wish, I wish, I wish you’d care”

    Billy Bragg – A New England

  14. Slightly Bemused

    There was a time I believed I was bullet proof, that I could live forever. In that time, I wanted to be remembered.
    Now, I prefer to go softly, and let my actions rather than my ego speak.
    But in that day there was a song that sang to that part of me, a song that lit up my life every week, I think on Thursdays.
    Irene Cara, you were the voice of my dreams!

      1. Bertie Theodore Alphege Blenkinsop

        Posted at the same time! I wrote to them when I was a youngella, got a letter back from Paul & Stan, made my year!

  15. Slightly Bemused

    Not sure what year this came out, but it was a request of a very good friend of mine to find the album that had this single on in. It was the early 90s, former Yugoslavia was in turmoil, and she wanted Spandau Ballet to make it better.

    And Billy Idol, White Wedding. I guess you cannot figure!

  16. eamonn

    Big Audio Dynamite
    Like the Style Council, out of the Jam – Big Audio Dynamite out of the Clash. Plenty didn’t get it, at least not straight away.
    Magic Medicine Show
    If you’re bald it will give you hair
    If you got straight trousers it will give you flares

    1. Mask Wearer

      I don’t like Big Audio Dynamite

      You’re probably just confusing ‘under-rated’- with ‘under-performing’.’
      (They weren’t as good as Black Grape, but they weren’t as bad as Dreadzone.Dreadzone are over-rated)

      They were better than Bananarama, but so was everybody else at the time.

      The nicest compliment I can throw towards them is that they knew when to stop.

      Most disappointing band, EVER.

      1. eamonn

        You are probably correct. all i have is an opinion. my opinion and yours differ by a degree or more.
        You did like the clash ?

          1. Bertie Theodore Alphege Blenkinsop

            That’s my ringtone Eamonn (i know nobody has ringtones any more)

  17. eamonn

    Speaking of the Style Council……
    Speak like a child. 1983
    Cause of many a debate – is it good, is it not. ……………reached no4 in the uk charts.
    I knew many who didn’t rate this.
    Me, i get a joyous feeling. Paul and Mick went on to record some diamonds.

  18. Otis Blue

    Pour yourself one, smoke ‘em if you’ve got ‘em and listen up.

    Such was the quality of the late Mark Hollis’s work this pastoral beauty – which presaged what was to come – never featured on an original Talk Talk album, featuring only as a b-side to Life’s What You Make It.

    Talk Talk – It’s Getting Late in the Evening

    1. Liam

      great tune, surprisingly one of the 20 biggest selling singles worldwide of all time, so not that obscure.

  19. Formerly known as

    Can someone make this list a playlist on YouTube and/or Spotify?


    1. Slightly Bemused

      That’s what I tend to do of a Saturday or Sunday. Allows me to listen to old gems I used know, and new wonders I never heard before. Best wait until midday Saturday, though,as some new ones come creeping in before that as people wake up with music on their minds :-)

      1. Janet, dreams of big guns

        I just add the ones I like to a playlist as I go along on a Friday night, it’s great for throwing up stuff I had forgotten or never known…not much to my taste this week which in itself is a revelation, I never really copped I had an aversion to the 80’s

  20. Seamus

    Sunglasses after Dark. The Cramps. 1980. One of the great things about coming to live in Dublin in the 1980s was that you could actually buy records by bands like the Cramps who were a wild piece of exotica at the time. This is a fabulous reworking of Ace of Spades by Link Wray.

  21. eamonn

    Cry Before Dawn
    The Seed that’s been sown
    Pierce turner turned my mind to wexford, even though he is singing about Wicklow, for some reason I thought pierce had been in the roach band with billy, but it seems not.
    You can credit Otis Blue for bringing this one up –
    I was looking for follow me, but couldn’t find that

    1. Slightly Bemused

      I had the pleasure one time of hearing Jim Page himself sing this, accompanied by Davy Spillane on uileann pipes. Spa hotel in Lucan, and an unexpected blind date. I mean no disrespect to the lady, but the music was definitely the highlight of the night.

  22. Slightly Bemused

    1980s songs. Strangely, at horrible o’clock of the morning two come to mind. Both by the same artist, both of a similar time, but both very different.
    Our class went on a retreat to St Raphaels way the hell away from my home in Kildare to Offaly. An overnight, I needed to make sure my undies were clean, else how to impress the girls, or more importantly, the girl.
    I shared a room with my best friend, and the room opened to the yard with great echo. So, after we were all consigned to bed, we tried an acapella version on For The Longest Time, using the natural reverb from the yard. After a few moments we were joined by other voices, until that song became a crescendo.

    As to the other, she is always a woman to me :-)

  23. Bertie Theodore Alphege Blenkinsop

    I remember going into school the morning after this was on and EVERYBODY talking about the moonwalk… he then taught Michael Jackson how to do it.

    Shalamar – A night to remember

  24. Kingfisher

    D’you know what would be nice – if each track added could be added to a weekly virtual mixtape as each Friday contest goes on.

    1. Brother Barnabas

      one and only time I ever heard my father swear was shouting up the stairs telling my brother to turn that off

  25. goldenbrown

    WELL when all is said and done 80’s music is almost a genre of it’s own, a standout decade whether you lived thru it or not, I really believe that in 100 years from now 80’s will still be getting airplay everywhere. so this is already a great thread, its a mixtape already, I agree with nearly everything above and could happily add another 50 songs to the list above….it’s so difficult to find an entry point but I’ll try:

    The 80’s was also a great time for movies, 80’s movies and 80’s chart hits often traveled together:

    Don’t You Forget About Me – performed by Simple Minds The Breakfast Club–IfvbioQ

    St Elmo’s Fire (Man In Motion) – John Parr St Elmos Fire

    Please Please Please Let Me – performed by The Dream Academy Ferris Buellers Day Off

  26. f_lawless

    Hey I know it’s a bit late but what the hey.
    Maybe this song isn’t obscure but I missed it the first time round and only became aware of it recently. The vocals are so Jagger-esque that it could easily pass for a Stones song

    Broken English – Coming On Strong (1987)

    1. Slightly Bemused

      You’re older than you think.

      We all are, but some days we are younger than we believe.

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