Some people call it fall. I call it football season. Why do we love it so much? Because football gives sitting on the couch all day and all night complete and utter social acceptability. Watching 12 games over the course of Saturday and Sunday guarantees Monday morning stories of a weekend well-spent. We tie together food, parties, family time, and fashion choices with football game day. But what about music?
Every season needs a playlist, so here for you now – the perfect football playlist for this weekend. Criteria appeared to include the following: a raw, ugly guitar sound; a vocalist teetering on the unstable; and a climatic bridge perfect for those last-second field goals.
Folks, I present: The Top 10 80s Metal Songs for Football Season!
# 10 – Blow My Fuse – Kix
Underrated band alert right here. “Blow My Fuse” was a gritty release from Kix’s 1988 Blow My Fuse album, and its driving beat signifies something GOOD is just about to happen. Listen to this goldmine of innuendos while you envision your fantasy football linebackers destroying the competition.
# 9 – Rock And Roll All Nite – Poison
Major props to the legendary KISS for recording the original version of this song. But I cannot be dissuaded from my undying preference for Poison’s version of “Rock And Roll All Nite.” From the Less Than Zero movie soundtrack of 1987, this song has the feel of touchdown dances and pick-sixes. Those plays put the FUN in football. No official video, but please check out this incredible low-def dive into New Year’s Eve 1987, courtesy of the MTV New Year’s Eve Ball.
# 8 – Bang Your Head (Metal Health) – Quiet Riot
This one goes out to the teams who could use a little break from the rigidity of plays and preparation. Quiet Riot’s 1983 album Metal Health included this all-time great, and let’s be honest; the game is always more fun to watch when you’ve got a little crazy on the field.
# 7 – The Final Countdown – Europe
This 1986 release from Swedish band Europe, off their album of the same name, is a game-time classic. Everyone recognizes the keyboard opener. And if your team is enmeshed in a nail-biter, what other song could better preface that last, FINAL play? What comes next – tears or cries of joy? No matter – Joey Tempest has your back.
# 6 – You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’ – Judas Priest
Judas Priest released this one in 1982 from their Screaming for Vengeance album. And PLEASE listen to the live version, right here. The fan noise rivals that of any NFL stadium. I don’t know one team who wouldn’t use this as their theme song this weekend. I’m putting Judas Priest on the ballot for an upcoming Super Bowl halftime show. Change my mind.
# 5 – Kickstart My Heart – Motley Crue
Released in 1989 by Motley Crue off the Dr. Feelgood album, there is no opportunity to ignore the opening Mick Mars and Tommy Lee combo on “Kickstart My Heart.” This song just drives and drives and drives and never stops. It slows down for a second. But that’s only so your quarterback can regroup before he hits that tight end for a TD.
# 4 – Enter Sandman – Metallica
It’s July 1991 and Metallica’s “Enter Sandman” hits the charts as the first single from their self-titled album. It appeared to be one of the first true crossover rock songs for this iconic band. Even if you weren’t into their more thrashy earlier releases, I dare you to not love this tune. And for football, forget it. If your team runs onto the field with this classic hit as the backdrop, IT’S ON.
# 3 – Welcome To The Jungle – Guns N’ Roses
Guns N’ Roses released their debut album Appetite for Destruction in July 1987, and just like young Midwestern Axl stepping off an LA bus – things would never be the same. Guns N’ Roses’ influence can most certainly be felt in the world of sports, where “Welcome To The Jungle” is a commonly used sound-guy ploy to ignite even the most casual of fans.
# 2 – Thunderstruck – AC/DC
The AC/DC classic hit “Thunderstruck” was released in 1990. The album The Razor’s Edge was my first official CD! Thanks 1990 Santa Claus! The heavy guitar is perfect for Hail Mary passes, and for generally enticing fans in the stands to lose their ever-loving minds.
# 1 – Crazy Train – Ozzy Osbourne
I don’t know how you play any sport in America without “Crazy Train” by the incomparable Ozzy Osbourne. It’s the 1980 smash hit from the album Blizzard of Ozz, and this particular version of the song is my absolute favorite. It’s completely unhinged. It’s like former NFL defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh in lyrical form.
There you have it. Please watch this weekend’s football lineup responsibly (i.e. with a little 80s Metal in the background).
Feature Photo: A.RICARDO / Shutterstock.com
Top 10 80s Metal Songs For Football Season article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2023
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