URBAN: 'Have you heard, have you heard the news' the cross-eyed kid shouted at the top of his lungs while trying the best to look straight at me. 'Huh? Calm down! What are you talking about' I replied while trying my best to jump off the swings in a big-boy manner and style (pace, lots of pace, ouch, that hurt) 

'It's about KISS. There's a picture in the magazine, they've removed all their make-up'. I was shaking my head in disbelief. Surely this must be some kind of joke on my account. 

Paul 'The Starchild' Stanley, Gene 'The Demon' Simmons, Eric 'The Fox' Carr, and new guitarist, Vinnie 'The Wiz' Vincent, were super-heroes in the eyes of a young kid, much like the fantastic four or x-men. They would not reveal, unveil, their true identity to anyone... no matter what.

However, the rumour spread like bushfire around the school yard. Sure enough, even the weird looking synth-boy fan and his silly excuse of a 'pony-tail' [literaly just a couple of longer hairs at the back of the neck - major synth fashion statement of the time] started preaching. 

'Yeah, my older brother told me about it yesterday, they look like crap, then again, they always did'. Oh shut it! I rushed home as I lived just around the corner of the schoolyard and managed to find the news paper and the picture. 

'they were no longer super-heroes, merely strange looking men'.

Holy crap, it was true, they were no longer superheroes merely strange looking men. They didn't breath fire, drool blood, or wear body armour or any wicked customes at all. Unbelievable! 

The main thing which basically nurtured me throughout my first couple of school years had disappeared right infront of my eyes... and I believe I even cried just a little bit ('cry just a little bit' - oh shut it friggin' shakin' stevens). 

I was shattered and the macabre premeditation to remove the grease destroyed the dream for millions of young kids. 'Lick It Up, what the hell is lick it up? Mark my words - things would never be the same again... and I didn't even feel like playing any Game & Watch 'Donkey Kong 2' that day.

1983 was THE year when I first discovered hardrock & heavy metal. Actually, I had already been a KISS fan for a couple of years (since I turned 6, I went literaly straight from nursery rhymes to KISS on my tiny, sony, portable, one speaker, cassette player), but it all started for size this magical year of '83... 

...when a fire at Southfork threatens the lives of all the Ewings on the season finale of Dallas. 

You had to collect as many hardrock pins as possible. In other words, you bought one and nicked five others while the shop keeper looked the other way. Badges, scarfes, denim and leather (not the saxon platter). I could have been a poster boy for the weekly mag of 'metal kids warriors' in all my denim and short figure. 

You kept track of all the albums you wanted for birthday, x-mas, anyday really, on the backcover of the rock mag 'Okej', and rushed down to the shop only to find out they didn't have half of all the goodies. 

In other news, Super Swede, Bjorn Borg retires from tennis at the age of merely 27 after winning 5 consecutive Wimbledon championships (what a tosser). 

We wrote down all the bands and their past and present members in our school books. Some collected stamps as kids, me, heavy metal acts. You obviously copied as many vinyls as possible to tape as you couldn't exactly buy plenty of originals when you're not even using two digits to write down your age (pre- downloading). 

'MTV ??? forgetaboutit!'

MTV? forgetaboutit! Noone had it (yet) in Sweden-land and it took weeks for hard rock news to travel. 

You had to go down the local burger place to watch videos and they didn't have MTV either for that matter. Nah, instead they received weekly new music tapes on VCR, which they played repeatedly on their hanging wall TV's (they had two). Ehem, it was mostly Hall & Oates and such stuff anyhow. 

I tell ya', it wasn't easy being a metal hungry swedish kid. We had to fight to find our music, and man, did we strike gold or what.

'Bark At The Moon' yet another reason why you simply had to be a hardrock fan in -83. Ozzy Osbourne dressed up as a friggin' werewolf, barking mad, barking great! Visually, it doesn't get much better than this in the eyes of a kid. The title track with its power riff and over-the-top playing by guitarist, Jake E Lee, got you in the heart everytime. 

Randy Rhoads, who? I didn't know anything about the previous guitarist (except for his name) and let's not even talk about Black Sabbath. 

They were appearantly 'Born Again' and managed to produce the most hiddious artcover since the Scorpions in the seventies. They had the nerve to hire former Deep Purple vocalist Ian Gillan as their new frontman and singer. They also included 'Smoke On The Water', plus a friggin' stonehenge set, too big to fit indoor venues in their show (Spinal Tap). 

Fans from both camps went bezerk in the streets as you could compare this to Sol Campbell's much talked about transfer from Tottenham to Arsenal ('Spurs and Gunners' to any real fan out there).

This being my first Sabbath experience, I couldn't care less, and why should kids care anyhow??? 

'You Can't Stop Rock'N Roll' - not even if you dress-up as poorly as Dee Snider and the lads'.

'You Can't Stop Rock'N Roll' - not even if you dress-up as poorly as Dee Snider and the lads. Again, a good thing kids just don't care, whom else would gladly support a bunch of cross-dressers without even thinking about their image. Just play it loud, mutha!!! I recall watching the video and got immeditely hooked. 

They even had a song named 'The Kids Are Back', wicked! I also recall listening to the first track from 'Kill 'Em All' and hated it with a passion. 

I didn't pick up another Metallica album until 1989 when my urge for more 'brutal' stuff became more intense. I guess you could simply be too young to understand the greatness about tunes such as 'Seek And Destroy'. They basically scared the s**t outta me in -83. I understood their music later on and thus why it's a top-10 album of the year in my books and list.

'The mad looking frontman in camouflage outfit and Dr.Martin boots'.

I did however play Accept's 'Balls To The Wall' over and over again. The mad looking frontman in camouflage outfit and Dr.Martin boots, didn't look the part though. However, Udo Dirkschneider is a funny name and the hysterically high-pitched vocals and dual guitars made them a household name at my block. 

Meanwhile, another German with a funny name, Nazi war criminal 'Klaus Barbie' is arrested in Bolivia. 

'Bang Your Heads' sang Kevin DuBrow as they sold five million copies of a thing called Quiet Riot and broke all the records for a metal album in the states. How the hell did that happen anyway? They were surely not the best act of the year. 

Iron Maiden's 'Piece Of Mind', Motley Crue's 'Shout At The Devil', Def Leppard's 'Pyromania', not to mention the little elf's first solo album, 'Holy Diver'. My God, 1983 just had to be THE best year ever for classic hardrock and heavy metal. Well, at least until the following year '1984' anyhow. 

In 'Cold War News' on September 1st: Korean Air Lines Flight 007 is shot down by a Soviet Union jet fighter when the commercial aircraft enters Soviet airspace and all 269 on board are killed. 

Gary Moore wrote the superb 'Murder In The Skies' about the above 'Cold War' subject and Flight 007 (included on the 1983 album release by the former Thin Lizzy guitarist ' Victims Of The Future').

'Time was running out for all on board...'

AOR - the wimpy stuff? I personally didn't listen to any major acts of the genre as a very young kid. I discovered Journey, Foreigner, Night Ranger, Asia, and all that fluffy stuff during the dark ages of metal (late 90's)

Michael Bolton's self-titled release had some great AOR tunes (prior to his mature hausfrau period).

I-TEN recorded their one and only album, 'Taking A Cold Look', before they moved on to writing music for pop artists (Cyndi Lauper, etc). The album included songs later re-recorded by the likes of Heart (Alone), Honeymoon Suite (the titletrack) and REO Speedwagon

The Genesis wannabees of Marillion, released their debut LP, 'Script For A Jester's Tear', and Raven released their by far best album, 'All For One'.

One of my heroes died this year though (Herge' - creator of Tintin comics), Michael Jackson did the 'moonwalk', the famous Apple Macintosh advertisement is released, and I was playing 'Mario Bros' on my Game & Watch Nintendo. 

By the way, KISS didnt look like super heroes anymore in -83, but they knew still how to kick arse - A Million To One!!!



[ 1983 ]

Choose a year:
[1980] [1981]
[1982] [1983]
[1984] [1985]
[1986] [1987]
[1988] [1989]

Alan, Bandi, Kimmo, Martien, & yours truly, Urban of RockUnited.Com have been spending weeks, months, wading through a bunch of weird looking artcovers and albums of the eighties!  Indeed, not an easy task, tracking back in space and time, especially since some of us were almost still in diapers (sticky) at the early days of this era of grand and fantastic music. Check out the left-side border for our yearly write-up in 'black', and this is RockUnited's official 'Best-Of-Album Chart of 1983', calculated from the individual charts. No live-ones, EP's or compilations are included, merely studio albums. You can find them all and complain about our personal taste (or rather the complete lack of it) further down this page! This is merely our humble and tiny celebration of the hairmetal days or daze for that matter. Enjoy or not - this is the eighties: 1983.


50. Venom - At War With Satan
49. AC/DC - Flick Of The Switch
48. Prism - Beat Street
47. Arc Angel - Arc Angel
46. Europe - Europe
45. Kansas - Drastic Measures
44. Mercyful Fate - Melissa
43. Eric Martin Band - Sucker For A Pretty Face 
42. Black Sabbath - Born Again
41. Manowar - Into Glory Ride

40. Vandenberg - Heading For A Storm
39. Yes  - 90125 
38. Asia - Alpha
37. Raven - All For One
36. Lita Ford - Out For Blood
35. Quiet Riot - Metal Health
34. Robert Plant - The Principle of Moment
33. Stan Bush - Stan Bush
32. Joe Perry - Once a Rocker, Always a Rocker
31. Survivor - Caught In The Game

30. Wildlife - Wildlife
29. Easy Action - Easy Action
28. Preview - Preview
27. Alcatrazz - No Parole From Rock N Roll
26. Saga - Heads Or Tails
25. Night Ranger - Midnight Madness
24. Magnum - The Eleventh Hour
23. Aldo Nova - Subject 
22. ZZ Top - Eliminator
21. 38 Special - Tour De Force

20. Thin Lizzy - Thunder & Lightning
The twelfth and final studio album by Thin Lizzy. It's easily their heaviest sounding platter, perhaps a tad too much influenced by new boyo and guitarist, John Sykes (Tygers Of Pan Tang). The band suffered from a massive drug addiction by now and this would turn out to be the end of the line. Highlights, the cracking single, 'Cold Sweat'.

19. Saxon - Power & The Glory
Saxon found themselves on the verge of becoming a major act in the states, due to their US tour of the year with support act, Accept. It never quite happened though and they would become more and more desperate to please the states with each following release. Thus why, this is pretty much the last of the original sounding Saxon albums.

18. Accept - Balls To The Wall
The fifth studio album by the mad Germans and a real heavy metal classic in my opinion. Originally released in Europe, December -83, while America had to wait until January -84. The title track is regarded as one of the most classic metal anthems. The album is jam-packed with aggressive vocals and ditto guitarwork. Their best-selling album.

17. Twisted Sister - You Can't Stop Rock N Roll
Nope, you certainly can't stop rock 'n' roll. Not even if you dress-up as poorly as Dee Snider and the lads. Too twisted for America as they had to travel to old England to receive a record deal. They appearantly loved 'em over there as the single, 'I Am (I'm Me), reached #19 on the UK single chart. 'The Kids Are Back', Play It Loud, Mutha!!! 

16. Rick Springfield - Living In Oz
'Living In Oz' was yet another successful album release by Rick Springfield. Mostly and perhaps even, merely, popular in the states and Australia though ('Oz' = slang for 'Australia'). It reached #9 on the US Billboard 200 and Rick was nominated for a Grammy Award for 'best male rock vocal performance' for the single, 'Affair Of The Heart'.

15. Kiss - Lick It Up
They appeared on MTV for the first time without make-up on the day of the album's release. To quote myself in the left-side story: 'they were no longer super-heroes, merely strange looking men', end quote. Vinnie Vincent first and only appearance as full-time member of the band. Peaked at #7 in the UK and #24 in US. Not too shabby.

14. Gary Moore - Victims Of The Future
'Time was running out for all aboard'. Moore wrote the song, 'Murder In The Skies' about a political and true story which took place during the year of '83 (see left-side story for more info). Here you can find the first and original version of 'Empty Rooms' (also included on 'Run For Cover'). A great collection of hard rock anthems and slower stuff.

13. Rainbow - Bent Out Of Shape
Bent Out Of Shape? There's no need for that. This is Joe Lynn Turner at his very best together with the old man in the hat (Blackmore). It's very much still the sound of AOR (like the previous two albums by Rainbow). The video for the song, 'Street Of Dreams', was banned by MTV due to its controversial hypnotic clip(?). Underrated release.  

12. Ozzy Osbourne - Bark At The Moon
The comeback after a disasterous year in '82. Ozzy bit the head off a bat, took a piss at Alamo, as well as mourned the death of Randy Rhoads. New guitarist, Jake E. Lee, had a difficult task ahead of him. But, he managed somehow to deliver the goods and the title track became Ozzy's first hit single in the UK. Werewolf's sells. Classic!

11. Michael Bolton - Michael Bolton
Believe it or not, but there was a time when Michael Bolton did great hard rock albums. Sure, it's soft, AOR, in the vein of Touch, Aldo Nova, Journey, but it's way more fun than his hausfrau music of the past 15 years. Considered as a hidden gem since most rockers would not touch a CD with his name printed on it. Catchy and fun.

10. Y&T - Mean Streak
Produced by Chris Tsangarides (Thin Lizzy, etc.) the band tried to give the old 'Yesterday & Today' style the sound of the eighties. It didn't quite work out though. Not a very popular move in America as they screamed for a more commerical sound. However, the title track and 'Midnight In Tokyo', are two of their all-time best songs.

9. I-Ten - Taking A Cold Look
The one off project by the later famed songwriter team of Tom Kelly and Billy Steinberg. Some of their better known songs are: 'Like a Virgin' (Madonna), 'Eternal Flame' (The Bangles), 'True Colours' (Cyndi Lauper). This is however hi-tech AOR, featuring songs later covered by Heart (the smash hit, 'Alone), REO Speedwagon, Honeymoon Suite.

8. Bryan Adams - Cuts Like A Knife
The blue collar Canadians' breakthrough album in the states as it peaked at number eight on Billboard 200. It hardly didn't chart at all in Europe as it would take yet another year for us Europeans to recognize the talent of Bryan Adams. And to be honest, it's a good album, but it's no match to the following ('Reckless'). - Straight From The Heart.

7. Marillion - Script For A Jesters Tear
Originally named after J.R.R. Tolkien's book 'Silmarillion', the name was shortened to avoid any sort of copyright conflicts. It's actually rather 'typical', British, soft-prog, definied by Fish's poetic and introspective lyrics. In a retrospective look, 'Script For A Jesters Tear', heavily inspired by the sound of Genesis in the 70's. Great stuff though.

6. Metallica - Kill 'Em All
Not quite the instant classic among average metal fan of '83. For example, it didn't chart anywhere, and they got booed off stage on several occasions. They were still underdogs. Angry young men that wrote angry young metal tunes. Thrash Metal had arrived in the shape of Metallica and the hard rock genre would never be the same again. Classic ! 

5. Iron Maiden - Piece Of Mind
The 1983 effort by Iron Maiden. Not quite as impressive as the previous and following one. There's a couple of minor hickups on this platter. Still, miles ahead of most releases of the year (thus why it's #5). Most songs reflects their interest in books and films. You can find everything from Tennyson to Alistair MacLean. Yup, it's yet another classic album.

4. Dio - Holy Diver
DIO's first and best work. The little elf and drummer, Vinnie Appice, decided to abanndon the flagship of Black Sabbath in '82 (due to disagreements over the mixing of 'Live Evil'). 'Holy Diver' set sails to conquer the world, less than a year after their Sab' departure. Stunning guitar work by Viv Campbell and classic songs, makes this a milestone in metal.

3. Motley Crue - Shout At The Devil
'It has been written, those who have the youth - have the future. So come now, children of the beast. Be strong and shout at the devil'. The warning sticker ' may contain backward messages', surely helped, as they sold more copies than w/o. 'Looks That Kill' and 'Too Young To Fall In Love', turned this motley crue into a winning concept. Great!

2. Journey - Frontiers
The 2nd best selling Journey as it reached #2 on the Billboard chart. The song, 'Seperate Ways' (Worlds Apart), possible the best uptempo AOR anthem to this very day. This could have been an even bigger and better release, if not for the last minute removal of two of their best songs, 'Ask The Lonely', 'Only The Young'. 

1. Def Leppard - Pyromania
'Rock! Rock! Till you drop. Rock! Rock! to the top'. 'Pyromania', a vast transportation that brought the Sheffield lads all the way to the top. It's the second best-seller in the states (only Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' sold more copies). It would sell more than 10 million copies, and producer 'Mutt' Lange, did it, again. The #1 album of 1983 in the RockUnited.com chart. (all album comment nonsense by: Urban)

INDIVIDUAL LISTS OF 1983 *Personal Stuff*


Albums Top 30:

1. Def Leppard - Pyromania
2. Motley Crue - Shout At The Devil
3. Accept - Balls To The Wall 
4. Dio - Holy Diver
5. Iron Maiden - Piece Of Mind 
6. Kiss - Lick It Up 
7. Twisted Sister - You Can't Stop Rock 
8. Marillion - Script For a Jesters Tear 
9. Metallica - Kill 'Em All 
10.Ozzy Osbourne - Bark at the Moon

11. Rainbow - Bent Out Of Shape
12. Raven - All For One
13. Gary Moore - Victims Of The Future
14. I-Ten - Taking a Cold Look
15. Saga - Heads Or Tails
16. Night Ranger - Midnight Madness
17. Aldo Nova - Subject
18. Black Sabbath - Born Again
19. Mercyful Fate - Melissa
20. Quiet Riot - Metal Health

21. Prism - Beat Street
22. Rick Springfield - Living in Oz
23. Michael Bolton - Michael Bolton
24. Saxon - Power & The Glory
25. ZZ Top - Eliminator
26. Manowar - Into Glory Ride
27. Journey - Frontiers
28. Thin Lizzy - Thunder and Lightning
29. Bryan Adams - Cuts Like a Knife
30. AC/DC - Flick of the Switch


Albums Top 20:

1. Journey - Frontiers
2. Huey Lewis & The News - Sports
3. Dio - Holy Diver
4. Iron Maiden - Piece Of Mind
5. John Cougar Mellencamp - Uh Huh
6. Def Leppard - Pyromania
7. Alcatrazz - No Parole From Rock & Roll
8. Wildlife - Wildlife
9. Saxon - Power & The Glory
10.ZZ Top - Eliminator

11.Bryan Adams - Cuts Like A Knife
12.Rainbow - Bent Out of Shape
13.Magnum: The Eleventh Hour
14.Kiss - Lick It Up
15.Gary Moore - Victims Of The Future
16.Y & T - Mean Streak
17.Marillion - Script For A Jesters Tear
18.Ozzy Osbourne - Bark At The Moon
19.Thin Lizzy - Thunder & Lightning
20.Twisted Sister - You Can’t Stop Rock & Roll


Albums Top 20:

1. Metallica – Kill 'Em All
2. Marillion – Script For A Jester's Tear
3. Thin Lizzy – Thunder And Lightning
4. Def Leppard - Pyromania
5. Dio – Holy Diver
6. Journey – Frontiers
7. Iron Maiden – Piece Of Mind
8. Gary Moore – Victims Of The Future
9. Robert Plant – The Principle Of Moments
10.Saga – Heads Or Tails

11.Magnum – The 11th Hour
12.Ozzy O – Bark At The Moon
13.Saxon – The Power And The Glory
14.Night Ranger – Midnight Madness
15.Yes – 90125
16.Y & T – Mean Streak
17.Vandenberg – Heading For A Storm
18.Manowar – Into Glory Ride
19.Europe – Europe



Albums Top 20:

1. Def Leppard - Pyromania
2. Rick Springfield - Living In Oz
3. Michael Bolton - Michael Bolton
4. Motley Crue - Shout At The Devil
5. Aldo Nova - Subject
6. Preview - Preview
7. Survivor - Caught In The Game
8. Y&T - Mean Streak
9. Stan Bush - Stan Bush
10.Journey - Frontiers

11.I-Ten - Taking A Cold Look
12.Asia - Alpha
13.Rainbow - Bent Out Of Shape
14.Bryan Adams - Cuts Like A Knife
15.38 Special - Tour De Force
16.Night Ranger - Midnight Madness
17.Accept - Balls To The Wall
18.Eric Martin Band - Sucker For A Pretty Face
19.Kansas - Drastic Measures
20.Arc Angel - Arc Angel




Albums Top 20:

1. Journey - Frontiers
2. Bryan Adams - Cuts Like a Knife
3. Motley Crue - Shout at the Devil
4. Bonnie Tyler - Faster than the Speed
5. I-Ten - Taking a Cold Look
6. WASP - Animal
7. 38 Special - Tour De Force
8. Easy Action - Easy Action
9. Billy Idol - Rebel Yell
10.Michael Bolton - Michael Bolton

11.Joe Perry - Once a Rocker, Always a
12.Def Leppard - Pyromania
13.Lita Ford - Out For Blood
14.Quiet Riot - Metal Health
15.Y & T - Mean Streak
16.ZZ Top - Eliminator
17.Metallica - Kill 'Em All
18.Twisted Sister - You Can't Stop Rock 
19.Rick Springfield - Living in Oz
20.Ozzy Osbourne - Bark at the Moon



Songs of the year:

Billy Idol - Rebel Yell
Iron Maiden - The Trooper
Night Ranger - Sister Christian
ZZ Top - Sharp Dressed Man
Dio - Holy Diver
Accept - Balls To The Wall
Def Leppard - Foolin'
Mφtley Crue - Looks That Kill
KISS - Lick It Up
Twisted Sister - You Can't Stop Rock'n Roll
Rainbow - Street Of Dreams
Ozzy Osbourne - Bark At The Moon
Slade - Run Run Away
Quiet Riot - Metal Health
Chicago - Stay The Night
Raven - Take Control
Journey - Seperate Ways
Black Sabbath - Trashed
Michael Bolton - Fools Game
Europe - Seven Doors Hotel
Thin Lizzy - Cold Sweat
Rick Springfield - Living In Oz
Triumph - Never Surrender
Kansas - Fight Fire With Fire
Y&T - Meanstreak
Metallica - For Whom The Bell Tolls
Saxon - Power And The Glory
Mike Oldfield - Moonlight Shadow
Bonnie Tyler - Total Eclipse Of The Heart
David Bowie - China Girl
Tears For Fears - Pale Shelter
Spandau Ballet - True
U2 - Sunday Bloody Sunday
Duran Duran - The Reflex
Corey Hart - Sunglasses At Night
Romantics - Talking In Your Sleep
Lionel Richie - Hello
Big Country - Big Country
Cyndi Lauper - Time After TIme

Urban (Wally):

POP/Rock albums of the year:

1. U2 - War
2. Billy Idol - Rebel Yell
3. Tears For Fears - The Hurting
4. David Bowie - Let's Dance 
5. Spandau Ballet - True
6. Genesis - Genesis 
7. Duran Duran - 7 And The Ragged Tiger
8. Depeche Mode - Construction Time Again
9. The Police - Synchronicity
10.Bonnie Tyler - Faster Than The Speed Of Light

12.Mike Oldfield - Crises
13.John Cougar Mellencamp - Uh-Huh
13.Corey Hart - First Offense
14.Earth Wind & Fire - Electric Universe
15.Lionel Richie - Can't Slow Down 
16.Big Country - The Crossing
17.Kim Wilde - Catch As Catch Can 
18.Madonna - Madonna
19.Heaven 17 - The Luxury Gap
20.Romantics - In Heat 

21.Men At Work - Business As Usual
22.Talking Heads - Speaking in Tongues
23.Cyndi Lauper - She's So Unusual
24.The Fixx - Reach the Beach 
25.The Church - Seance
26.Eurythmics - Sweet Dreams
27.Rolling Stones - Undercover
28.Paul Young - No Parlez 
29.Wham - Fantastic 
30.Stevie Nicks - Wild Heart

80's Pop Rules !!!