Well, here’s my list for 1984. There was actually a lot more great albums than I initially thought, and I enjoyed going back to dig up a few things I never listened to much back then. I suspect tho, that as the ’80s went on, there’ll be less and less great albums to choose from [a few of these bands packing it in after their ’84 releases, and a few that didn’t follow these up with anything as good]. *Drop a note in the comments on yours favoes of ’84, [and Subscribe to my page!]
Kim Mitchell – Akimbo Alogo
The first full album from former Max Webster singer/guitarist, released in June. You could not avoid this album on the radio here – “Go For Soda”, “Lager And Ale”, “All We Are”, “Feel It Burn”… just an awesome album, still sounds great! Saw Kim play in Niagara Falls when this came out and again a few years ago, these songs are still highlights of his show.
Rush – Grace Under Pressure
The first time I saw Rush was on this tour, at Maple Leaf Gardens. Released in April, it boasted 3 hits – “Distant Early Warning”, “Red Sector A”, and “The Body Electric”, as well as favorites “The Enemy Within” and “Between The Wheels”. I loved Signals, and and nearly as good. The underrated gem in Rush’s catalogue.
Triumph – Thunder Seven
Released in November, this is the last great Triumph album [IMO]! Featured hits “Spellbound” and “Follow Your Heart”, along with classics “Rock Out Roll On” and “Killing Time”. Loved this album then, still enjoy it.
Honeymoon Suite – Honeymoon Suite
Growing up near Niagara Falls this band was huge, being local, and drew instant comparisons to Loverboy from some. But, a great debut album – “New Girl Now”, “Stay In The Light”, “Burning In Love”, “Wave Babies” – all hit singles in Canada. Released in July, I saw them shortly after as they opened for April Wine at the Kingswood Music Theater, north of Toronto.
Helix – Walking The Razor’s Edge
The band’s 2nd album on Capitol, in a string of 4 really good albums. This one featuring the massive hit “Rock You” [by Bob Halligan Jr], as well as hits/covers of Gimme Gimme Good Lovin’ [Crazy Elephant] and (Make Me Do) Anything You Want” [A Foot In Coldwater]. Also included a few memorable band written rockers in “Animal House” and “You Keep Me Rockin”.
Santers – Guitar Alley
Toronto trio’s 3rd [and final] album released in the ’80s [a 4th was recorded but not released til the late ’90s]. Produced by Rik Emmett [Triumph]. A bit softer production, but some great stuff with the hit “Can’t Shake You”, “Black Magic”, “Baby Blue”, and the ballad “Dreaming”. Santers also scored a hit [and lots of radio play] with their version of Free’s “All Right Now” [not my favorite here].
April Wine – Animal Grace
Sadly the last from the band before splitting up [returning in the early ’90s]. This one a bit heavier than Powerplay, but it didn’t do as well. Released early in the year, it featured the hit “This Could Be The Right One” [the only track featured in the live set], as well as favorites “Sons Of The Pioneers”, “Without Your Love”, and “Hard Rock Kid.” The classic logo missing on the cover.
White Wolf – Standing Alone
Heavy ‘melodic metal’ [as it was called] from this Edmonton-based band’s debut album, released late in the year. Great hard rockers on this album with the minor hit “Shadows In The Night”, as well as cuts “Headlines”, the title track, and [anthem] “Metal Thunder”. It did crack the Billboard US Top 200 albums, and [for some reason] saw 2 different covers.
Bryan Adams – Reckless
I was never a huge Bryan Adams fan, but you couldn’t ignore the guy in the ’80s, especially Reckless, released in November, it was a #1 album everywhere, sold 12 million copies worldwide, featuring a pile of hits, most notably “Run To You” [originally penned with BOC in mind], “Somebody”, “Kids Wanna Rock”, It’s Only Love” [feat Tina Turner], and a few more.
Urgent – Timing
The lone album from Toronto based trio, released early in the year. Keyboards added by guest players [a keyboard player was added after the album was recorded]. The band featured drummer Kim Hunt [ex Zon, later of Moxy]. “You’re Not The One” [a ballad] was a hit single, also included the single “Degan (Love You, Leave)”, and excellent melodic rock cuts like “Cat On The Prowl”, “Killer Love”, and “I’ll Find A Way”. Great vocals, with guitar sound & solos. *A US band took up the name a year later.
Others: Everest Everest , Lee Aaron Metal Queen, Red Rider Breaking Curfew, Kick Axe Vices , Gowan Strange Animal, Qwest Dreamzone, Harlequin Harlequin, Nash The Slash American Band-ages, Champion Champion, Thor Only The Strong .
31 / 05 /’21
3 thoughts on “Top 10 Canadian Albums Of 1984”
Great writeup. Agree with you KJ on all fronts on all of this. Cool u caught Akimbo on that tour. Rumour Has It is one of the best solos ever by anyone. White Wolf was supposed to open for Nugent here in town back in 86 but they never made it so I never saw them.
The wheels came off of April Wine big time. Santers was good but I liked Racing Time better.
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I only have the Rush, Triumph and Bryan Adams albums so I will agree on those.
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do you guys have any favorites for 1985? i think it’s slim pickins’ after that… My 1979 list is huge.