10 Underrated Songs From The 80s That Deserve More Love & 10 Still Popular Today

10 Underrated Songs From The 80s That Deserve More Love & 10 Still Popular Today

Let's do a throwback today to revisit some of the greatest tunes of the 80s. Ah, the 80s. A beautiful time for music where so many of our classic favourites originated from. But while stand out icons like Michael Jackson and U2 reigned supreme, we're here to tell you there are some underappreciated songs you're missing out on too! Here are 10 underrated 80s song to give a listen to, and 10 that continue to be appreciated to this day.

1. "Save a Prayer" by Duran Duran (1982)

Although Duran Duran is a popular band with plenty of hits like "Hungry Like The Wolf" and "Ordinary World," their slower song, "Save A Prayer," tends to get overshadowed by their more dance-oriented tracks. But sleep on it no more - we're here to tell you this beautiful, melancholic melody deserves to be recognized. Give it a listen (you can thank us later)!

Duran Duran 1983Brian Aris; Distributed by Capitol Records, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons on Wikimedia Commons

2. "Under the Milky Way" by The Church (1988)

The Church is a beloved Australian alternative rock band that doesn't get as much attention as they should. Case in point, "Under the Milky Way" is a hauntingly beautiful song that somehow flew under the radar! Despite receiving critical acclaim, it isn't exactly a song you see often on mainstream 80s playlists. Now's your chance to see what you've been missing out on!

Cassette-7348874 1280Image by ai subarasiki from Pixabay

3. "Oblivious" by Aztec Camera (1983)

Led by Roddy Frame, the band's only consistent member, Aztec Camera seriously delivered with this funky and groovy pop masterpiece, "Oblivious." The song is awfully catchy and is so easy to dance to, making this one 80s song that needs to be added to your 80s playlist. It's a hidden gem given how few people rave about it today!

Escape-Artiste-Yg Ozv4I6Zi-UnsplashPhoto by Escape Artiste on Unsplash

4. "Rip It Up" by Orange Juice (1983)

Having a pretty unique sound, "Rip It Up" by Orange Juice is best categorized as super groovy. One listen is all it'll take for you to appreciate this post-punk, funky song. The catchy guitar riff is definitely the highlight of the song, while Edwyn Collins' distinctive vocals ties everything together. For the perfect body-swaying jam, give this one a listen.

Daniele-Sansone-Jxvwhmd0Ioo-UnsplashPhoto by Daniele Sansone on Unsplash


5. "Echo Beach" by Martha and the Muffins (1980)

The more you listen to "Echo Beach" by Martha and the Muffins, the more addicted to it you'll be. With its memorable saxophone line and danceable beat, it's definitely a song that gets overlooked compared to other hits from this era, but really shouldn't be.

Wan-San-Yip-D- Jzhn-8Ki-UnsplashPhoto by Wan San Yip on Unsplash

6. "Love My Way" by The Psychedelic Furs (1982)

Offering a unique sound that utilizes the marimba alongside synthesizers, "Love My Way" by the Psychedelic Furs is just the song you need if you're looking for something that will instantly get you up on your feet. It's hard to sit still to this one! And yet sadly, it's still one that goes largely unnoticed in the world of 80s hits. 

The Psychedelic Furs 25-Jul-2017 02Jeff Marquis on Wikimedia Commons

7. "Twist in My Sobriety" by Tanita Tikaram (1988)

Another song that received critical acclaim, "Twist in My Sobriety" by Tanita Tikaram still unfortunately went largely unnoticed. With her deep, husky-like voice singing the song's introspective and meaningful lyrics, this is one song you can definitely sit back and appreciate. Give it a listen! We think you're going to be mesmerized by it.

2019 Tanita Tikaram - By 2Eight - Zsc1955Stefan Brending (2eight) on Wikimedia Commons

8. "Christian" by China Crisis (1982)

Get lost in the music with China Crisis' underappreciated hit, "Christian." It's surprisingly heartfelt and emotive, resulting in a beautifully crafted song that seriously highlights the band's talent. It's the perfect song to listen to when you just want to lay back, relax, and completely lose yourself in the melody.

China Crisis (246)Andrew D. Hurley on Wikimedia Commons

9. "Ship of Fools" by World Party (1987)

Expertly offering societal and political commentary all wrapped up in a catchy pop tune, "Ship of Fools" by World Party is exactly what music should do. It should speak and move you in ways words just can't! It's truly a hidden treasure among the hits of the 80s, one that needs to be appreciated more often.

Mr-Cup-Fabien-Barral-O6Gepqxnqmy-UnsplashPhoto by Mr Cup / Fabien Barral on Unsplas

10. "This Is Not America" by David Bowie and Pat Metheny Group (1985)

Collaborating with jazz fusion band Pat Metheny Group, "This Is Not America" by David Bowie has a haunting and mysterious sound to it that continues to draw people in. It's a bit more subdued and reflective compared to Bowie's more flamboyant tunes, which really showcases his versatility as an artist. But at the same time, it's probably why you've never heard of it before.

David Bowie - 1983 Let's Dance Promo 009Rogers & Cowan Inc (photographer). Distributed by EMI America. on Wikimedia Commons


1. "Thriller" by Michael Jackson (1982)

Arguably his most iconic track, "Thriller" by Michael Jackson is probably one of the greatest songs of all time. It's a masterpiece in the world of pop! While the song itself is incredibly catchy and addictive to listen to, when it's combined with its groundbreaking music video, you're witnessing a work of art. It's easily become a staple of all 80s music playlists, but also Halloween ones too!

1712779861752.pngConstru-centro on Wikimedia Commons

2. "Sweet Child o' Mine" by Guns N' Roses (1987)

Featuring one of the most iconic guitar riffs to ever exist in music history, "Sweet Child o' Mine" by Guns N' Roses is an 80s staple. Even if you claim you've never heard this song before, 20 seconds into the song is all you'll need to either recognize it, or fall in love with it. It's a rock anthem that seriously can't be beat.

Gnr London Stadium 2017 3 (Cropped)Raph_PH on Wikimedia Commons

3. "Don't Stop Believin'" by Journey (1981)

A song that's become the symbol of perseverance and hope, "Don't Stop Believin'" by Journey is basically a universal favourite at this point. It's got the most uplifting, powerful lyrics accompanied by exceptional vocals and a perfect melody. It's used frequently in many movies and TV shows, really highlighting its timeless appeal and continued popularity.

Journey BandMatt Becker on Wikimedia Commons

4. "Africa" by Toto (1982)

Although "Africa" by Toto kind of became a meme on social media, we're happy it did. Because if that's what it took to bring this song back to life, we'll take it! Known for its memorable melody, beautiful vocals, and iconic lyrics, this is one song no one will ever complain about. The moment it comes on, you'll have everyone in the room singing and dancing along.

Toto Kongsberg Jazzfestival 2017 (224636)Tore Sætre on Wikimedia Commons

5. "Every Breath You Take" by The Police (1983)

A staple in the world of classic rock, "Every Breath You Take" easily became one of The Police's most famous hits, but also one of the most popular 80s hits in general. There's a laid back vibe to the song that's perfect for late night drives, relaxing at home, or for jamming out to at karaoke.

The Police Amsterdam Arena 1Someone Not Awful on Wikimedia Commons

6. "With or Without You" by U2 (1987)

Emotional and powerful, "With or Without You" by U2 is a must-have song on any 80s playlist. And we seriously mean that. Continuing to make appearances on radio channels to this day, it's not hard to see why this song is universally loved. Not only is it so catchy, but its simple tune makes us really focus on the well-written, beautiful lyrics.

U2 On Joshua Tree Tour 2017 Brussels 8-1-17Remy on Wikimedia Commons


7. "Billie Jean" by Michael Jackson (1982)

Michael Jackson is truly the king of this era, which means we can't just spotlight only one of his songs! Aside from "Thriller," "Billie Jean" was another massive hit. Exceptionally groovy, perfect for head-bopping, and containing a compelling story within the music, it's a classic favourite. They just don't make pop like they used to anymore!

Michael Jackson 1983Uncredited (likely Matthew Rolston); Distributed by Epic Records on Wikimedia Commons

8. "Tainted Love" by Soft Cell (1981)

With their synth-pop rendition of "Tainted Love," Soft Cell was able to turn this 60s soul track into an 80s dance anthem. The melody is just so catchy - it'll be stuck in your head for days! With such a great hook, addictive vocals, and danceable tune, it's the ultimate track to put on for your retro throwback nights.

Soft Cell (1983 Sire Publicity Photo) 01Distributed by Sire Records, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

9. "Livin' on a Prayer" by Bon Jovi (1986)

When we say "rock anthem," did you immediately think of "Livin' on a Prayer" by Bon Jovi? Because we wouldn't blame you! Even to this day, you still likely hear it everywhere, from sporting events to parties to friends' playlists! There's such a timeless nature to the song that continues to make it one of the most popular songs to come from the 80s. And with such a great message and melody, we can't complain about it.

1024Px-Bon Jovi 1Rosana Prada on Wikimedia Commons

10. "Take on Me" by a-ha (1985)

With its exceptionally simple chorus, "Take on Me" by a-ha is arguably one of the most addictive tunes we've ever heard. The high-pitched vocal hook combined with the repetitive beat and easy lyrics makes this one 80s song that will always bang at any karaoke session. It's safely secured a spot in the best pop classics of all time (to no one's surprise) as it's still loved by listeners of all ages. We truly believe it'll continue to stand the test of time.

1712780518562.pngJamesbond raul on Wikimedia Commons