A few weeks ago I wrote a list of the most under rated British bands of the 90s as nominated by some charming musicians, bloggers and chancers that I hang about with on social media sites. It got huge traffic, so, not wishing to change a winning formula, I asked the same group to come up with the most under rated bands of the 80s, and here’s the list.
Obviously the key here is defining the phrase ‘under rated’. There are some 80s bands; Felt, The Soft Boys and Gang Of Four spring to mind, who didn’t trouble the charts a great deal in their prime but thanks to being championed by more recent bands are now heralded as makers of some of the finest music of that decade. So we didn’t include them. I also added a few bands who were huge at the time, but these days never seem to be played on the radio or mentioned at all.
In a totally serendipitous way as I was putting the list together Steve Lamacq on BBC 6 Music decided to make the first two weeks of the year ‘lost 80s bands’ week, playing some completely forgotten tunes like Westworld’s Sonic Boom Boy. So Steve, how about playing a few of these?
Thanks then to everyone who added their twopennyworth.
And can someone please release the lost album recorded by the number one band. Ta. Any we have missed in the comments please. If you do your own list shout and I’ll post a link here too.
There’s a selection of tracks on the Spotify play list below
Barry Andrews had already been part of one of new wave's pivotal bands in XTC. In the early 80s he teamed up with Dave Allen, formerly of The Gang of Four, and took XTC's scratchy, angular pop to another level. Debut hit My Spine In The Bassline is a driving dancey tune that sounds typically 80s but wouldn't be out of place in a club a decade or so later. By the late 80s they's lost a bit of their edge but were still making fine dancey pop.