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1980 – Turn It On Again

February 16th, 2019 · Posted by Skuds in Music · No Comments · Music

The 70’s are out of the way now, we’ll never see their like again. The 80’s started with a bang, only the first year of the decade and there were already all the elements that would define the musical decade. And 1980 had the one thing that 1979 was missing – a new Genesis album, Duke,  which demonstrated their own transition from a 70’s sound to an 80’s sound. This is one of the few albums that I bought on the day it was released, despite the mild ridicule from my ery indie mates at college.So how 80’s was 1980? There were the debut albums from Toyah, OMD, the Psychedelic Furs, The Teardrop Explodes, John Foxx, UB40, Dexys, Echo & the Bunnymen, INXS, U2 and Yello plus the new re-vamped Adam and the Ants released Kings of the Wild Frontier, Toyah had also released their second album and a live album, Yes merged with the Buggles and released Drama, Peter Gabriel’s third self-titled album was almost as 80’s as it gets. Meanwhile Bow Wow Wow put out their cassette single, the Cure came out with Seventeen Seconds, setting out their new gothic direction, Ultravox released Vienna, and Bowie released the Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps) album with its quintessentially 80’s singles and promo videos. there was a lot of jazz fusion going on, ready to break out and take over later in the decade. The only thing missing from 1980 that could make it sum up the whole decade more is Depeche Mode. We had to wait another year for them.

If you dig out the DVDs of the first season of the new Dr Who now the thing that strikes you is how many things that are iconic to the new show were crammed into Ecclestone’s only season, things that you thought came along much later. Well 1980 is a bit like that.

It was also the year that the NWOBHM bands broke through, some to fade away and others to still be big now. There were debut albums from Angel Witch, Iron Maiden, Witchfynde, Girlschool, Tygers of Pan Tang, and Diamond Head. There were two albums from Saxon, one from Samson, the classic British Steel from Judas Priest and Motörhead put out the mighty Ace of Spades. Without all of that there would surely be no Metallica.

I can’t forget to mention that Spizzenergi became Athletico Spizz 80 this year and released their first album, Do A Runner, which contained none of their previous 5 singles except a re-working of an old B side. At the same time as the album they also released a single that wasn’t on the album. Talk about value for money. Always a footnote in musical history, but Spizz was at the centre of my record collection. In fact he now is my record collection. When I got rid of all my vinyl some years ago I kept all his albums and singles.

I chose Turn It On Again to sum up 1980 for me because it would be so wrong for Genesis to not appear somewhere on this playlist and its a cracking tune.

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