The Melodic Side Of Rock And Metal: 100 Melodic Rock/AOR/Glam Metal Albums from the 80s (Part X/ Albums from 1989)

(Albums in alphabetical order)

91) Bad English by Bad English


Bad English were a supergroup fronted by John Waite including members from Journey, and also from his old band, The Babys. From this album, the biggest hit was the Power Ballad When I See You Smile, which made John Waite reaching the #1 spot for a second time! (First time it was as a solo artist, with Missing You). Five other singles also released from here. The upbeat AOR cut Heaven Is A 4 Letter Word, which was an almost a Top 10 hit in the US Maisntream Rock charts, Possession which was another Power Ballad (and kind of better than the lead single, in my opinion) and missed the US Top 20 by just one spot, Forget Me Not which was the biggest hit in the US Mainstream Rock Radio reaching #2, including a kick-ass guitar solo in the middle, and B-Side’s only single, Price Of Love (another Power Ballad!) which was the second biggest hit of the album reaching #5. A sixth single was the opening cut Best Of What I Got but it was mediocre compared with the other singles. As for the non-singles Tough Times Don’t Last, was the only non-single from A-Side, but it’s definitely a stand-out, with a catchy melody and great guitar riffs. Ready When You Are and Rockin’ Horse kinda heavier than the average mood of the Bad English album, and of course there is the fourth Power Ballad of the album, The Restless Ones! But the best from the B-Side would be Ghost In Your Heart!

92) Blue Murder by Blue Murder


Although they were branded as Heavy Metal, I think –this album at least- leans towards a Glam Metal direction. Surprisingly, no singles charted from here, but Jelly Roll would be perhaps the most known song from the record. Valley Of The Kings also released as a single, and both of them had a music video. Also the singles weren’t much Glam Metal. Jelly Roll was leaning towards Alternative Rock, and Valley Of The Kings was more Progressive Metal. Riot and Sex Child are catchy Glam Metal tunes with catchy choruses, yet they are longer than the average Glam Metal song. The title track is also a masterpiece, Out Of Love is perhaps the best cut here, and an excellent Power Ballad. Billy is more like an upbeat Hard Rock number and Ptolemy is more Progressive. And Black-Hearted Woman is also another good cut with catchy chorus.

93) Danger Danger by Danger Danger


Seems like Danger Danger had a thing for using a word twice. Danger Danger the name of the band. Danger Danger the name of their debut. And the two singles from it are called Naughty Naughty and Bang Bang! Bang Bang was a moderate hit reaching #49 in the US Hot 100, yet nothing more beyond this. Apart from the two singles this album has some great Glam Metal anthems. Under The Gun is definitely the best cut from here featuring some massive keyboard and guitar riffs. Saturday Nite is a great Party-Rock cut, equally good with Naughty Naughty and Bang Bang. Same goes for Rock America and Boys Will Be Boys. On the other hand we also have some good Power Ballads here like Don’t Walk Away and One Step From Paradise. Live It Up is probably the best cut from the album to be played live at the end of some set!

94) Enuff Z'nuff by Enuff Z'nuff


A rather underrated Glam Metal band, but it’s one of the few Glam Metal acts who are still active and still release albums, without having a break-up during the years of their existence! Anyway their biggest hits New Thing and Fly High Michelle made it in the US Hot 100 (both accompanied by notorious Glamish music videos), but they didn’t remained as classics from that era. For Now was also supposed to be released as a single (which was better than the other two in my opinion), but unfortunately it never happened. The rest of the album follows the same pattern of the lead singles, with Poppy Glam Metal tunes. She Wants More, Hot Little Summer Girl and Little Indian Angel were similar tunes. In The Groove was kinda more serious, and also longer than the rest, and last but not least the Power Ballad I Could Never Leave Without You, which was the best cut from the album by far. Why it wasn’t released as a single I don’t get it!

95) Gorky Park by Gorky Park


Gorky Park were perhaps the first Russian band to make it into the American market. Although not a big success, still it was the beginning. Try To Find Me reached #81 in the US Hot 100. Bang and Peace In Our Time were released as singles too, yet without any commercial success. But the most interesting cuts here would be the non-singles. The singles were pretty mediocre in my opinion (Peace In Our Time wasn’t bad though). Hit Me With The News is simply epic, featuring samples from news broadcasts, coupled with a cool guitar riff as background. Sometimes At Night is a nice melodic cut, My Generation is an excellent cover by The Who, Child Of The Wind is perhaps the coolest among the whole record, as for Fortress…is it my impression or the intro is based on Love Will Tear Us Apart by Joy Division? Anyway it’s a cool atmospheric ballad, and among the best of the album. Anyway, it might not be the best Glam Metal album around, but still a good effort.

96) Lost In The Wild by Melidian


By 1989 AOR genre has lost its momentum, and it was basically a dead genre. Which means, Melidian’s album was a commercial failure. But of course it doesn’t mean it’s a bad album! Ready To Rock is the catchiest song from the album, and it also had a music-video as well. Another catchy AOR tune is Livin’ Under The Gun. Fire Up The Heart, Hands Off and Overheated were kinda Harder than the first two but still they Melodic element was present. And of course a Power Ballad couldn’t be absent…Sleepless Night is the Power Ballad here. And last but not least, the title track has the coolest riff overall.

97) Skid Row by Skid Row


Skid Row’s debut album was leaning towards the Glam Metal sound of late 80s. This album contains the band’s two biggest hits which reached the US Top 10. 18 And Life and I Remember You. Both are considered all-time classics among the Glam Metal genre. Another single was the catchy Youth Gone Wild and also the single Piece Of Me, which didn’t chart but it had the most awesome bassline there! Non-singles were also great too. Big Guns, Sweet Little Sister and Can’t Stand The Heartache were also upbeat –yet underrated- Glam Metal classics. Rattlesnake Shake, Here I Am and Makin’ A Mess are Harder than the others, but of course that’s not bad. And from here the best non-single is Midnight/Tornado which has the best guitar solo in the album.

98. Sonic Temple by The Cult


In their first two albums, The Cult were a Post-Punk band, but since Electric they turned into a Hard Rock/Glam Metal band which helped them to make it into the American market. Sonic Temple is definitely their masterpiece. Although the songs are longer than the average Glam Metal song, they still use the formula of catchy guitar riffs and choruses. The two biggest hits from here are Fire Woman and (Edie) Ciao Baby. Sun King and Sweet Soul Sister were also released as singles, but weren’t as much successful as the other two. Non- Singles were also great. The long yet catchy Soul Asylum, is the best non-single here, having a really cool guitar riff. New York City has this pretty aggressive vibe which blends well with the rest of the album, with Automatic Blues also moving in the same waves. Soldier Blue has one of the best Rock riffs of that year perhaps? Wake Up Time For Freedom and Medicine Train tend to be more poppy than the rest of the non-singles though.

99) Trash by Alice Cooper


Trash was Alice Cooper’s comeback album, this time following an even more Glam Metal direction, something he started doing by the time he released Constricted. Poison was perhaps the biggest hit of his career, making it into the #7 spot in the US and in #2 in the UK. Three other singles were released from here. The Glam Metal classics House Of Fire and Bed Of Nails (with the latter featuring Doom Metal influences in the intro!) , and the Power Ballad Only My Heart Talkin'. Non-Singles were equally good of course. Spark In The Dark and Why Trust You were also Glam Metal classics, and the title track was pretty unique for a Glam Metal song since it featured…Rap Vocals! The best non-single and also among the whole album, would be Hell Is Living Without You in my opinion.

100) Winter Rose by Winter Rose


Although the album was released on CD for the first time in 1997, it was actually a series of demos recorded in 1989. Hench, I consider it a 1989 album, and not a 1997 album. This band didn’t gain any commercial success, but they are known mostly because two of the band’s members were Sebastian Bach and James LaBrie, lead singer of Skid Row and Dream Theatre respectively. The most known song –and also the best- from them is I’ll Never Fall In Love Again, which also had a music-video. A really catchy upbeat Glam Metal tune. Other nice upbet tunes here were Asylum City, One Last Time and Never Let Me Go. And as the tradition of Glam Metal (and also AOR of course) suggests, there is always a Power Ballad in an album (even if it wasn’t an official one), and this ballad is Dianna. Rough Boys as the name suggests is kinda rougher than the rest of the album. The rest of the album leans towards the AOR sound mostly, with Thrill Of The Night being the best among those cuts.

1988

1987

1986

1985

1984

1983

1982

1981

1980

Before 1980


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  • 1mo

    Interesting, I've heard only of Alice Cooper here, the others are mostly unknown to me. Anyway, I like these songs, 80's were always so mystical.

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    • 1mo

      OK about the others, but I'm surprised about Skid Row. I have seen a bunch of people here wearing Skid Row t-shirts even nowadays.

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    • 1mo

      Ok, I'll try, thanks for the info.

    • 1mo

      No problem.

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