The 25 best albums of 1990

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August 12, 2022, 8:06 PM

The 1990 albums: including They Might Be Giants, Depeche Mode, The La’s, Happy Mondays and the Pixies.

Picture: Press


Let’s look back on the year of Violator, Pills ‘N’ Thrills & Bellyaches and Some Friendly.

  1. They Might Be Giants – Flood: released January 15, 1990

    New York duo John Flansburgh and John Linnell released their debut album for a major label (Elektra) which included the huge hit Birdhouse In Your Soul.

    They Might Be Giants - Flood: album cover

    They Might Be Giants – Flood: album cover.

    Picture: Press


  2. The Sundays – Reading, Writing And Arithmetic: released January 15, 1990

    The fondly remembered band released their debut album, which included Here’s Where The Story Ends and all-time favorite Can’t Be Sure.

    Sundays - Reading, Writing And Arithmetic album cover

    The Sundays – Reading, Writing And Arithmetic album cover.

    Picture: Press


  3. Carter The Unstoppable Sex Machine – 101 Damnations: released January 29, 1990

    Jim Bob and Fruitbat’s debut album included Sheriff Fatman and the pun Twenty Four Minutes From Tulse Hill.

    Carter The Unstoppable Sex Machine - 101 Damnations album cover

    Carter The Unstoppable Sex Machine – 101 Damnations album cover.

    Picture: Press


  4. The Beloved – Happiness: released February 19, 1990

    The duo released their second album, which saw them embrace rave culture and featured the singles Hello, Your Love Takes Me Higher and The Sun Rising.

    The Beloved - Happiness album cover

    The Beloved – Happiness album cover.

    Picture: Press


  5. The House Of Love – The House Of Love (aka Fontana): released February 26, 1990

    The Guy Chadwick combo released their second album (self-titled, like their first), which included Shine On, The Beatles And The Stones and I Don’t Know Why I Love You.

    The House Of Love - The House Of Love (aka Fontana) album cover

    The House Of Love – The House Of Love (aka Fontana) album cover.

    Picture: Press


  6. Sinead O’Connor – I Don’t Want What I Don’t Have – March 12, 1990

    The singer-songwriter’s second album included the hit cover of Prince Nothing Compares 2 U, which was No. 1 in the UK for

  7. Depeche Mode – Violator: Released March 19, 1990

    Electro-pop heroes Basildon have released their seventh album, featuring Enjoy The Silence, Personal Jesus and World In My Eyes.

    Depeche Mode - Violator album cover

    Depeche Mode – Violator album cover.

    Picture: Press


  8. Public Enemy – Fear Of A Black Planet: Released April 10, 1990

    The hugely influential rap collective released their third studio album, which included 911 Is A Joke and Fight The Power.

    Public Enemy - Fear Of A Black Planet album cover

    Public Enemy – Fear Of A Black Planet album cover.

    Picture: Press


  9. Inspiral Carpets – Life: Released April 23, 1990

    Clint Boon and co released their debut album, which included the singles She Comes In The Fall and This Is How It Feels.

    Inspiral Carpets - Life Album Cover

    Inspiral Carpets – Life album cover.

    Picture: Press


  10. The Breeders – Pod: Released May 29, 1990

    The alternative supergroup – which initially featured Kim Deal (Pixies), Tanya Donnelly (Throwing Muses) and Josephine Wiggs (The Perfect Disaster) released their Steve Albini-produced debut album, which included When I Was A Painter and a cover of The Beatles ‘ Happiness is a hot gun.

    The Breeders - Pod album cover

    The Breeders – Pod album cover.

    Picture: Press


  11. James – Gold Mother: Released June 4, 1990

    The Manchester band released their third album, which included Come Home and How Was It For You. The album was reissued the following year with the classic Sit Down added.

    James - Gold Mother album cover

    James – Gold Mother album cover.

    Picture: Press


  12. Teenage Fanclub – A Catholic Education: Released June 11, 1990

    The famous Scottish power-pop band released their debut album, which included Everything Flows.

    Teenage Fanclub - A Catholic Education Album Cover

    Teenage Fanclub – A Catholic Education album cover.

    Picture: Press


  13. Sonic Youth – Goo: Released June 26, 1990

    The alternative rock legends released their sixth album, which featured Dirty Boots, Cool Thing and spawned a million trendy t-shirts.

    Sonic Youth - Goo album cover

    Sonic Youth – Goo album cover.

    Picture: Press


  14. Deee-Lite – World Clique: released August 7, 1990

    The New York club act released their most famous album, which includes the monster dancefloor hit Groove Is In The Heart.

    Deee-Lite - World Clique album cover

    Deee-Lite – World Clique album cover.

    Picture: Press


  15. Pixies – Bossanova: released August 13, 1990

    The Boston band released their third full album, which included the singles Velouria and Dig For Fire.

    Pixies - Bossanova album cover

    Pixies – Bossanova album cover.

    Picture: Press


  16. Jane’s Addiction – Ritual de lo Habitual: released August 21, 1990

    Perry Farrell’s alt.rock heroes released their second album, which included the huge radio hit Been Caught Stealing.

    Jane's Addiction - Ritual de lo Habitual album cover

    Jane’s Addiction – Ritual de lo Habitual album cover.

    Picture: Press


  17. Neil Young & Crazy Horse – Ragged Glory: released September 9, 1990

    The “Godfather Of Grunge” proved why he was so influential on the genre with a sixth album in collaboration with the group Crazy Horse. Tracks include Mansion On The Hill, Over And Over and F**kin’ Up.

    Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Ragged Glory album cover

    Neil Young & Crazy Horse – Ragged Glory album cover.

    Picture: Press


  18. Cocteau Twins – Heaven Or Las Vegas: released September 17, 1990

    The ethereal rock trio’s sixth album included the hit Iceblink Luck.

    Cocteau Twins - Heaven Or Las Vegas album cover

    Cocteau Twins – Heaven Or Las Vegas album cover.

    Picture: Press


  19. INXS-X: Released September 25, 1990

    The Aussie rock band released the sequel to their massive hit Kick, which included the singles Suicide Blonde, Bitter Tears and Disappear.

    INXS - X album cover

    INXS – X album cover.

    Picture: Press


  20. The La’s – The La’s: released October 1, 1990

    The hugely influential band from Liverpool have released their first – and, to date, only studio album. It contained the classic There She Goes and the singles Timeless Melody and Feelin’.

    Les La - Les La

    Les La – Les La.

    Picture: Press


  21. The Charlatans – Some Friendly: released October 8, 1990

    Tim Burgess released his debut album, which included the single Then and live favorite Sproston Green. Later releases included the dancefloor hit The Only One I Know.

    The Charlatans - Some Friendly album cover

    Les Charlatans – Some Friendly album cover.

    Picture: Press


  22. Ride – Nowhere: released October 15, 1990

    The incredibly popular shoegaze band released their debut album, which included Vapor Trail and Dreams Burn Down.

    Ride - Nowhere album cover

    Ride – Nowhere album cover.

    Picture: Press


  23. Pet Shop Boys – Behaviour: Released October 22, 1990

    Neil Tennant and Chris Lowe’s fourth album included the singles Being Boring, So Hard and How Can You Expect To Be Taken Seriously?

    Pet Shop Boys - Behavior album cover

    Pet Shop Boys – Behavior album cover.

    Picture: Press


  24. Happy Mondays – Pills ‘N’ Thrills And Bellyaches: Released November 5, 1990

    Shaun Ryder, Bez and co released their third album, which included Step On, Kinky Afro and Loose Fit. Buggy had arrived!

    Happy Mondays - Pills 'N' Thrills & Bellyaches - the copyright troubling original

    Happy Mondays – Pills ‘N’ Thrills & Bellyaches – the copyright troubling original.

    Picture: Press


  25. The Cure – Mixed Up: released November 5, 1990

    Robert Smith’s Merry Men jumped on the dance bandwagon with this remix album, which found success in the choppy take on the classic Close To Me.

    The Cure - Mixed Up album cover

    The Cure – Mixed Up album cover.

    Picture: Press


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