The Best Albums of 1989

Madonna made music videos a marketing tool and was among the first to make them an art form. Many of her songs topped charts around the world, such as: “Like a Virgin”, “Papa Don’t Preach”, “La Isla Bonita” and “Like a Prayer”. After the Like a Prayer album in 1989, Madonna was named artist of the decade by several magazines and awards. “I thought the Eighties was fabulous,” she said, “and I’m sure Boy George would agree with me. In 1989, Irish singer Sinead O’Connor would record a cover of his song “Nothing Compares 2 U”, which would become the biggest song of the year worldwide in the new decade to follow. Prince had four number-one singles and 14 top ten hits on the Hot 100 Chart. Queen, which had expanded its music to experimental and crossover genres in the early 1980s, returned to guitar-driven hard rock with The Miracle in 1989. Here are all of the 1989 albums ranked.

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10. New York (Lou Reed)

“New York is Lou Reed’s return to form after pursuing a new wave (yes, new wave) during the mid-80s. I do miss the production of Transformer and Berlin, but the songwriting is the real pull of his albums, and it’s great here.”

9. Full Moon Fever (Tom Petty)

“One of Petty’s best works. I understand why he released it as a solo album because it has a bit more variety than his Heartbreakers music. Even though a lot of the members of the band were involved in the making of this one.

8. 3 Feet High And Rising (De La Soul)

“Stellar production from Prince Paul and lots of fun to listen to. Along with Paul’s Boutique (Beastie Boys, Dust Brothers producing), this was a groundbreaking production showcase LP in 1989, just before/as the sample clearance crackdown began. Would be better if it was ten to fifteen minutes shorter – just a few weak tracks holding it back from being a perfect album.”

See more: Nine Inch Nails Albums Ranked

7. Pretty Hate Machine (Nine Inch Nails)

“Pretty Hate Machine is Nine Inch Nail’s first album, and it is awesome. Much dancier than any other NIN record, Pretty Hate Machine mixes synthpop with the industrial influences that would dominate the rest of his work. However, this album is not lacking in humanity but incorporates it in the lyrics seamlessly with the industrial dance music beneath. “Head Like A Hole” is a classic, but the song that best showed Trent’s potential is “Something I Could Never Have”.

6. Bleach (Nirvana)

“This album really showed that Nirvana was an act to be reckoned with, they were evolving the sound of music even on this record, even though this may be their weakest record it’s a great start to a perfect discography”

5. On Fire (Galaxie 500)

“Sometimes less is more. This album seems that way, at least. There’s a lot more to this record than it sounds. It has a mood and it’s beautifully sad, but it’s perfect when I’m drained of all energy. Beautiful guitaring, songs, and production. “Leave the Planet” off of this record makes me go to other worlds.”

4. Paul’s Boutique (Beastie Boys)

“Absolute masterpiece, production model, a deluge of samples, the album is an indisputable reference to rock culture composed of archive samples and that’s why I love it. Each title of “Paul’s Boutique” is extremely punchy with dynamic beats and cult hip-hop vocals. The Beastie Boys confirm, with “Paul’s Boutique”, a style of their own, a mix of rap and rock, particularly inventive.”

See more: Beastie Boys Albums Ranked

3. Disintegration (The Cure)

“The Cure’s magnum opus. A beautiful, crushing, relatable, and dark experience from start to finish. Truly a journey of disintegration. My favorite album from anyone, period. Arguably up there with the greatest of all time speaking I’m a general sense.”

2. The Stone Roses (The Stone Roses)

“Excellent album. Every song is great. A big influence of indie rock and British rock music in the 90s. One of the few albums that sounds both of its time yet also ahead of its time. Oasis wouldn’t exist without this record”

1. Doolittle (Pixies)

“A masterpiece, no doubt about it. It’s good to see my top 5 tracks here are all rated in the 90s, although I think Wave Of Mutilation should be included in that elite group too. Surfer Rosa is in with a good shout, but Doolittle has to be the Pixies best work.”