This is a Random Album Generator.
One album a day.
From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Quiet Life

Japan

1979

Buy At Rough Trade
Quiet Life
Album Summary

Quiet Life is the third studio album by English new wave band Japan, first released on 17 November 1979 in Canada by record label Hansa. The album was a transition from the glam rock-influenced style of previous albums to a synth-pop style. Though sales were initially slow, Quiet Life was the band's first album to chart and was later certified Gold by the British Phonographic Industry for sales in excess of 100,000 copies.

Wikipedia

Rating

2.88

Votes

10296
Genres
Pop
New Wave

Reviews

Like a review? Give it a thumb up to help us display relevant reviews!
Sort by: Top Date
View Author
Fri Feb 26 2021
2

Unremarkable and forgettable

👍
View Author
Wed Feb 17 2021
3

At times, completely forgettable early synth pop. At other times, really compelling well crafted music.

👍
View Author
Fri Jan 29 2021
5

Where is 6 stars? Duran Duran took notes from this album.

👍
View Author
Wed Aug 16 2023
4

Eighties new wave in the late 1970s. Yep, I can see how this was influential.

👍
View Author
Thu Sep 28 2023
4

A great transitional album marking the shift from the Bowie-esque glam and disco of the 70s to the fully-established new wave of the 80s Favourite tracks: Quiet Life, Fall In Love With Me, In Vogue, Halloween

👍
View Author
Wed Jul 07 2021
3

Not really my kind of music but the album was easy to listen, although nothing really stood out as great.

👍
View Author
Thu Feb 29 2024
2

"Must hear before you die?" Why?? So I can know what the 362nd best album of 1979 sounds like? Stupid and erroneous. Excited to never listen to this again. 1.5/5

👍
View Author
Fri Feb 19 2021
5

Where has this been all my life? Eat your heart out, Spandau Ballet.

👍
View Author
Wed Apr 14 2021
5

Fabuloso. Una fantasía dirían algunos. Inventan a Duran Duran aquí, pero con mucha más clase, tal vez un poco más introvertido el pedo. Yo noto una influencia recia del Iggy solista berlinés. Y claro, Bowie. No suena a 1978 pero sí. El futuro desdoblado.

👍
View Author
Mon Mar 21 2022
5

What a great discovery. This is just a superb album that I kept listening to on repeat. The fretless bass makes this album even one step better than the songwriting already does. I hear influences of Roxy Music and Bowie, and you'll definitely hear where 80's bands like Duran Duran got their inspiration. Absolutely great album from start to end with no bad songs in between. Even as a big VU & Lou Reed fan, I really could appreciate the cover of All Tomorrow's Parties. Fall In Love With Me & In Vogue are my two favourite tracks 4,5*.

👍
View Author
Wed Apr 19 2023
5

I don't expect to convince people that Japan are one of the greatest bands to emerge from the new wave/post glam scene of the 70s but to my ears they were. This album, their musical breakthrough where they worked out their sound, is the bridge between that scene and the New Romantics. Duran Duran came from the image and the crossover disco/new wave sound of Japan. I mean look at them. Japan would make better albums, and they would break up too soon, but from every waaaa of the fretless bass to Sylvian's new found baritone this is a superb example of a band actually doing things to move music on and looking good and sounding good whilst they did it. I think after listening to over 200 albums in this project, I'm more sure of their greatness. But that's to my ears, maybe not yours.

👍
View Author
Thu Jun 03 2021
1

Kompletter Schrott. Stellenweise auch einfach unerträglich. Diese Platte hat mein Leben für ca. 50 Minuten schlechter gemacht.

👍
View Author
Thu Jun 24 2021
5

охуенно, вторая пятёра подряд. Даже, вероятно, вторая десятка (с этим сомнения, ибо сложно с пары прослушиваний прямо зафанатеть, но вообще очень зашло). Вот тот годный нью-вейв, который не совсем ударен в синтпоп и имеет значимое присутствие других инструментов. Баса в песне In Vogue, например, или гитарных ликов в Alien. По композиторству вообще никаких вопросов, каждая тема пиздец приятно и интересно звучит (и это от глемеров-то!), никаких кринжовых и дурацких моментов, я бы сказал всё очень умно сделано. Единственное, кавер на Вельвет Андеграунд не сильно заинтересовал, ещё и в расширенную версию его в трёх вариантах запихнули, что немного подкашивает. Посему ну 9, наверное, будет, в список прослушиваемого отправляется точно.

👍
View Author
Thu Mar 31 2022
5

Really good, loved the spooky vibes.

👍
View Author
Mon Aug 22 2022
5

Great synth pop / new wave sound. Amazing album, will check out more by this group.

👍
View Author
Fri Oct 28 2022
5

Loved it, would listen again

👍
View Author
Sun Oct 30 2022
5

Quiet Life, Gentlemen Take Polaroids, Tin Drum definitely belong to the list of best pop albums ever made. Sure, Roxy Music is everywhere, especially on Quiet Life, but they are much more than a slowed-down RM synth-pop clone - the songs and production are incredibly strong, and the whole concept is just perfectly executed.

👍
View Author
Tue May 02 2023
5

A big surprise, loved it a lot.

👍
View Author
Tue Oct 31 2023
5

Duran Duran on downers. Melancholic and angular.

👍
View Author
Wed Nov 22 2023
5

From Quiet Life onwards, Japan hit upon an apex that they wouldn't get down from until their breakup in the early 80s. One of the more underrated synthpop groups of their era, Japan always seemed to be more than the sum of its parts and it shows here, with adaptable ease into slinky yet speedy disco, a French language dirge and a Velvet Underground cover to boot all the while crafting their own inimitable path. Great album.

👍
View Author
Thu Nov 23 2023
5

Har gleda meg til detta. Jævlig bra, sjøl om Tin Drum e hakket bedre

👍
View Author
Tue Dec 12 2023
5

Crazy that this ain't even Japan's best album. Right in my sweet spot - wonky, eerie New Wave played by a bunch of fey English lads. One of whom who has a voice that sounds like it's from Duran Duran by way of Jupiter. The title track is one of that era's greatest pop songs. No exaggeration, it's near perfect.

👍
View Author
Fri Dec 22 2023
5

Never heard of them before but absolutely loved this.

👍
View Author
Mon Jan 01 2024
5

10/10 perfect album in my eyes even when it gets super cheesy, I’ll still eat this shit up

👍
View Author
Thu Jan 04 2024
5

Great band, I also followed the some of the members in the Rain tree crow and

👍
View Author
Wed Jan 24 2024
5

These guys are too cool for me. Fun covers though!

👍
View Author
Sun Mar 03 2024
5

Actually really enjoyed this! Atmospheric synth pop with a very pleasant man voice leading and nice variation in drums and base. Will listen to it again

👍
View Author
Thu Jan 28 2021
4

Just thinking of him as an off brand Bowie isn’t entirely fair. What a voice.

👍
View Author
Fri Jan 22 2021
4

A surprising listen, With some synth-pop sounds I rather enjoyed. "Quiet Life" is definitely a stand-out track, and "Despair" sound great even if not a shuffle-worthy song.

👍
View Author
Thu Mar 18 2021
4

I liked it. I has the good parts of 80's without the excessive synths and drums. 4.5

👍
View Author
Wed Feb 24 2021
4

Japan, the good old band. 😌 Lovely music as always.

👍
View Author
Wed Apr 14 2021
4

Me gustó, no tenía idea de qué esperar, pero ya que escuché sabía que es algo que disfruto. Una combinación de sintetizadores con las cuerdas y la batería y ya está ese sonido característico de los ochenta. Me sonó a lo que luego lueguito estaría haciendo Tears for Fears. Realmente no tuve skips (no escuché la versión delux), aunque mis favs quizá fueron "In Vogue" y "Halloween". Pero todo bien, a gusto. 9/10

👍
View Author
Wed Apr 14 2021
4

Sí me gustó, está darketón. Tiene sus toques hipnóticos, que su pop, que su rock, que su post-punk, sobre todo el sonido del bajo es lo que más disfruté a lo largo del disco. Canción que más me gustó: Halloween. Mood: zombificado.

👍
View Author
Sun Feb 28 2021
4

Really good, enjoyed this much more than I thought i would

👍
View Author
Sun Jul 11 2021
4

Dromerige New Wave muziek met een sterk pop-kantje. Ik vond dit wel een aangenaam album

👍
View Author
Wed Apr 14 2021
4

Muy ochentas, new wave y así pero siento que un poco más dark, corríjanme sí me equivoco

👍
View Author
Thu Jun 24 2021
4

Всё же хороший альбом. Грамотно выстроенные композиции, оригинальный подбор инструментов, продуманные партии. Последние особенно в уши бросаются, когда в наушниках на фоне слышишь что-то действительно интересное. Среди треков могу выделить Despair с её сильной атмосферой. В целом, не могу сказать, что узнаю треки, если где-то услышу. Что внутренне намекает, что субъект - просто приятный проходняк. При фоновом переслушивании пытался выцепить треки, что резали бы ухо или казались явно лишними. Но не удавалось, впечатления были скорее положительными. Так что снова конформистская оценка.

👍
View Author
Fri Apr 30 2021
4

Strange mish mash of synthpop and dark sombre songs. However, even though it doesn't work the best as an album, there are some incredible songs on here. Despair, The Other Side of Life, and the cover of All Tomorrow's Parties were excellent. And I still can't get over this is from the 70s; very ahead of it's time.

👍
View Author
Fri Jul 02 2021
4

A cool, moody, Duran Duran-esque new wave record. A lot of really good songs and the album flows really well. Loved the singer’s voice, and the bass was AWESOME.

👍
View Author
Wed Jul 21 2021
4

Muy buen disco. Tuve que escucharlo más de 1 vez para sentir su potencial.

👍
View Author
Mon Aug 09 2021
4

I enjoyed this album quite a bit. It sits on the border of New Wave and Glam Rock and anticipates Goth Rock. Some of the songs were a little too drawn out but it was an easy listen. The album wasn’t overly reliant on synth and had a good balance with a strong backbeat

👍
View Author
Thu Sep 09 2021
4

Good early new wave, but didn't really hook me on any of their songs.

👍
View Author
Thu Sep 23 2021
4

this was surprising good, with combinations of folk and jazz. smooth easy complexity.

👍
View Author
Wed Nov 10 2021
4

Dobar je ovaj Japan, kao država! Sviđa mi se album. Fall in Love With Me i Alien su mi najdraži sa albuma, a iskreno po mojoj definiciji covera, treba biti kao što je on napravio za All Tomorrow's Parties (inače izvorno od Velvet Undergrounda gdje je Nico na vokalu). Despair je takva pjesma koja paše u noć, definitivno ima taj štih, dok In Vogue dosta podsjeća na stari The Cure. Sve u svemu, album nije overstajo svoju dobrodošlicu.

👍
View Author
Sun Nov 14 2021
4

Contrairement à mon rival eltrapeze, j'ai globalement apprécié la proposition musicale de cet album. J'écris d'ailleurs en ce moment même cette critique en pleine heure de cours avec ma classe de sixième au sein de mon collège situé en Basse-Saxe (vous savez déjà que j'exerce comme professeur assistant). Voici comment j'ai obtenu le droit de me comporter ainsi en toute liberté. Hier s'est en effet tenue dans mon école une longue réunion entre syndicats de professeurs et syndicats de directeurs dont l'objet était une renégociation des conditions de travail et la conclusion d'un accord de branche applicable à l'ensemble des écoles du Land de Niedersachsen. Bien qu'étant nouveau et n'ayant aucun mandat, j'ai réussi à localiser la salle dans laquelle se tenait cette réunion, ai ouvert discrètement la porte et me suis assis à la table des négociations parmi les syndicalistes sans que personne ne remarque ma présence. La discussion portait au moment de mon arrivée sur le nombre de jours de congés à attribuer en période de maternité. Pendant que les négociations se poursuivaient, je lançai lentement le fil d'une canne à pêche miniature de ma propre conception vers le papier sur lequel les points d'accord étaient rédigés et, une fois celui-ci accroché, le tira furtivement vers moi en enroulant le fil de la bobine. Une fois à portée de main, j'y annotai mes quelques revendications et le refis glisser vers sa place d'origine avant de repartir par la même porte que celle par laquelle j'étais rentré plus tôt. L'accord de branche négocié a été publié ce matin au Journal Officiel allemand, je vous joins l'extrait qui nous intéresse : « ... Das ist also der Grund, warum Frauen, die Babys machen, sich ruhig ein paar Tage ausruhen können. Sagen wir grob zehn Tage. § 14 Et donc comme je disais les profs, parmi lesquels Robfourmilière, pourront écouter les albums fournis par Robert et les critiquer pendant les heures de cours sans qu'on vienne les emmerder. § 15 Eltrapeze est interdit de séjour en Basse-Saxe. § 16 Die Jungs, die Babys herstellen, dürfen auch ein paar Tage frei haben, aber nur vier. So einfach ist das. » J'ai donc maintenant la possibilité d'exercer mon activité principale sur mon lieu de travail en toute légalité.

👍
View Author
Wed Nov 17 2021
4

New to me! Really interesting listen. I enjoyed it and will return to it in the future

👍
View Author
Wed Nov 17 2021
4

Wasn’t familiar with this but it was an enjoyable listen!

👍
View Author
Mon Dec 20 2021
4

Super enjoyed this proto new wave album

👍
View Author
Sun Jan 09 2022
4

Pretty good! I was surprised! Remember these from being a kid but never really knew much of the their music but I enjoyed it. Like a cross between Duran Duran, Depeche Mode and the Cure

👍
View Author
Fri Jan 14 2022
4

Japan instantly brought to my mind Duran Duran to me as their sound seemed very similar. But I see that this was released several years before Duran Duran, so I can assume Japan were one of the early creators of this 80s sound. I started out a little ambivalent about this album. It was hard not to compare the infectious hooks present in the best songs from Duran Duran, The Human League, A Flock Of Seagulls, Spandau Ballet, ABC and the like. On my first listen of this nothing stood out like the best of those bands... But every time I listen to this I discover new great moments. It seems I had to listen a little harder to discover these moments, but they are emerging. Maybe it is just a matter of time until Japan becomes one of my staples of the synth-pop sound. I keep adding to the list of favorite songs at the bottom of these notes and it has become nearly a list of all of the tracks… My favorite songs: Quiet Life, Fall In Love With Me, Despair, In Vogue, Halloween, All Tomorrow's Parties

👍
View Author
Wed Jan 26 2022
4

Never had heard of this group but I really enjoyed the music.

👍
View Author
Fri Jan 28 2022
4

I'm really enjoying early synthpop as I learn more about it. This album seems really really well formed for the time it was made. The production of the album is excellent. Giorgio Moroder's influence on the album seems like it adds a lot, though I haven't heard the bands earlier works to compare it to. Super fun pop album that has a lot of elements of synth music that will come to prominence in the decades to follow. This album also features what might be my favorite Velvet Underground cover in All Tomorrow's Parties 4/5

👍
View Author
Fri Jan 28 2022
4

4/5. The 80s are back baby 😎

👍
View Author
Wed Feb 23 2022
4

The missing link between glam and New Romantics. Clearly heavily influenced by Lou Red, VU, New York Dolls, and Berlin-era Bowie, but leaning into a softer, more spacious sound that they became known for in the early 80s. Funny to hear how much Sylvian changed his vocal style from the first two albums. Love Mick Karn's bass playing; it is weird and distinctive and strangely funky, and always adds a fresh surprise.

👍
View Author
Mon Mar 28 2022
4

Неожиданный альбом на 4- (7 по 10-ти балльной шкале). Не знал ничего о группе, не слышал их песен, поэтому получился вполне приятный сюрприз

👍
View Author
Wed Mar 30 2022
4

This really had moments where it felt like a synth forward Talking Heads band. I liked it more and more as the album progressed.

👍
View Author
Wed Mar 30 2022
4

Nice album. It is straight 80's goodness.

👍
View Author
Thu Mar 31 2022
4

op een of andere manier heb ik dit album 2x geluisterd. Het was erg lekker, relaxed en toch ook intrigerend. Japan was wel echt een band waar een vriend (John) van mij fan van was, wellicht telde dat wel mee.

👍
View Author
Mon Apr 04 2022
4

Very good, very different from the other Japan stuff I’ve heard. A lot of influence/ sound connections between 80s pop rock like Duran Duran- but darker. Really cool listen, will look out for more Japan!

👍
View Author
Mon Apr 11 2022
4

I'm going to go out on a limb and say that the member of Duran Duran listened to this a lot before recording their first album. In fact, a few of the songs I would have sworn were Duran Duran had I not known. I liked this album much more than Duran Duran though, but that could be because these songs are fresh to my ears. Can definitely hear some Roxy Music influence on a few songs. I guess Japan is the missing link between Roxy Music and Duran Duran. 3.5 stars, rounding up to 4.

👍
View Author
Wed Apr 20 2022
4

This was... pretty decent for 80s synth pop that i'd never heard of.

👍
View Author
Wed May 11 2022
4

Really good and unexpectedly substantive . The sax steals the show on several cuts and this one’s easily my fave version of “All Tomorrow’s Parties.”

👍
View Author
Fri May 20 2022
4

Really enjoyed this! Very groovy, very 80s.

👍
View Author
Fri Jun 03 2022
4

Some great tracks on here. Ahead of their time and way better than their rock beginnings.

👍
View Author
Wed Jun 29 2022
4

If Japan stole some from Roxy Music, then Duran Duran stole most [maybe all] from Japan. I don’t know whether this is more New Wave or New Romantic, but it feels ahead of its time for ‘79 and a big advance from glam which had got awfully tired. Certainly, this sounds like the '80s looked. Way underrated.

👍
View Author
Sun Jul 10 2022
4

Generous 4. Moody music which I wasn't expecting with the synth style but could see myself listening to this a few times.

👍
View Author
Sun Jul 17 2022
4

It's the most relaxed of new romantic. Honestly it's very nice and cool.

👍
View Author
Mon Aug 15 2022
4

I would give this 3 stars (good), but I'm giving it an extra star because I have such deep respect for the musicians involved. David Sylvian would go on to make some of the most transcendent music as a solo artist. Richard Barbieri will later be a part of Porcupine Tree.

👍
View Author
Sun Sep 11 2022
4

Pretty good British art pop / synth pop.

👍
View Author
Thu Sep 15 2022
4

excellent, la voix la compo, c'est expérimental et dingue je kiffe bcp

👍
View Author
Thu Sep 29 2022
4

I bought this when it was first released and it has more than stood the test of time.

👍
View Author
Sun Oct 09 2022
4

Rating: 6.6 Best Track: Despair

👍
View Author
Wed Oct 19 2022
4

Kicking myself for not giving this album a chance sooner, because it was fantastic. With strong roots in Bowie and especially Roxy Music, Japan is part of that first wave of New Romantic and synth pop that would be everywhere within 3 or 4 years of when it came out in 1979. The sound is slick and stylish, but also subtly soulful and musically without any real flaws. In fact, as much as it's influenced by Roxy Music, in some ways Quiet Life is a tighter, better-executed album than a lot of Roxy's later stuff. I also feel like this is the album Duran Duran probably wish they made. The whole band is a tight machine here, but Mick Karn deserves extra props for some splendid work on bass and sax. If I have a critique, it's that the album loses a little steam on the back half. But I had a lot of fun with this one and will definitely come back to it. Fave Songs: Quiet Life, Despair, Fall in Love with Me, Alien, The Other Side of Life

👍
View Author
Thu Oct 20 2022
4

I thought this was a very good showing within its genre and era. Reading old reviews it seems like it got slagged a bit for being derivative of more recognized new wave heroes, but I feel like it innovates beyond its influences. It lags in places and the vocals have that 80s synth-guy affect that isn’t my favorite thing, but overall I liked it a lot.

👍
View Author
Fri Oct 21 2022
4

Highlights: A Foreign Place, Alien

👍
View Author
Sun Oct 30 2022
4

Pretty good album, though not all songs work for me. The opening title track is great, but I do not like the Velvet Underground cover, for example. As far as I remember, I found Gentlemen Take Polaroids much more impressive.

👍
View Author
Fri Nov 18 2022
4

Lotsa bops, album is disorganized on Spotify. Oh well.

👍
View Author
Wed Nov 30 2022
4

I had never heard about "Japan" (the band, not the country, of course, 🤣 (I'm so funny)), and when it started, I thought it was some 70/80's standard pop easy to listen to and forgettable. However, from song to song, I noted some lovely rock influences and even some very interesting jazzy mixed with the pop style. It's not perfect and deserves three stars, but I'll rate it with four just because of the surprise.

👍
View Author
Sun Dec 11 2022
4

This album was pretty good. I'm glad it's on here, because I've wanted to listen to it. I wish some of the songs were a bit shorter or that they'd change up a little more, but it was still nice. I'm surprised this album has such a low rating. My favourite songs were Quiet Life, Halloween, and A Foreign Place.

👍
View Author
Mon Dec 19 2022
4

Things would get even more interesting (and completely out there in Sylvia's solo career) but this is a landmark of New Romantic / Synth. Captivating, dark yet lush and hyper-stylised music.

👍
View Author
Fri Jan 06 2023
4

Late 70s synth-pop… yes. Sonically I really liked it. Quiet Life especially was a great vibe.

👍
Load more reviews