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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Dare!

The Human League

1981

Dare!

Album Summary

Dare (released as Dare! in the United States) is the third studio album by English synth-pop band the Human League, first released in the United Kingdom in October 1981 then subsequently in the US in mid-1982. The album was recorded between March and September 1981 following the departure of founding members Martyn Ware and Ian Craig Marsh, and saw the band shift direction from their previous avant-garde electronic style toward a more pop-friendly, commercial sound led by frontman Philip Oakey. Dare became critically acclaimed and has proved to be a genre-defining album, whose influence can be felt in many areas of pop music. The album and its four singles were large successes, particularly "Don't You Want Me". The album reached number one on the UK Albums Chart and has been certified triple platinum by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI). A remix album based on Dare, Love and Dancing, was released in 1982.

Wikipedia

Rating

3.07

Votes

4800

Genres

  • New Wave
Reviews
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Wed Feb 03 2021
4

Listening to this album reminds me that if I had embarked on this musical journey a decade ago, it would have gone far differently. And by differently, I mean worse. Generally my attitude toward listening to music has been the same attitude that I have about eating at restaurants: when I take the time to leave the house, drive somewhere, and pay all that extra money for restaurant service, I want to be absolutely crazy about that food. And if I am going to purchase music, and listen to it when I could be listening to literally anything else, it ought to be damn good. Is there anything worse than a $15 burger that’s dry, or a record with one hit and nine forgettable tracks? The difference between “current me” and “10 years ago me” is that now I recognize that there is another tier of music that, while not my favorite, can be very enjoyable in certain settings, primarily those settings where the music is in the background (like during a game night with friends). So what does all this have to do with The Human League’s album Dare? Well, there was a time where I absolutely hated all music that even had hints of an 80’s feel. Synthesizers, that 80’s drum sound (I looked it up and it’s called gated reverb), all of it made me cringe. Nowadays I am better at appreciating a good pop song despite its particular textures, and so I’m actually able to get some enjoyment out of a record like this. This is early 80’s synth-pop with a sinister flair to it, with a good amount of dark lyrics. I think the sound of both vocalists really goes well with the music, and I’m always happy to hear a vocalist sing in lower registers. Like probably everyone, I was familiar with the song Don’t You Want Me, but I was surprised that there weren’t many other monster choruses here. 80’s pop will never be my favorite, but overall I didn’t hate this, and its inclusion on this list seems pretty obvious to me. My personal enjoyment: 3/5 Did it belong on this list: 4.5/5

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Thu Mar 25 2021
4

Electronic pop from this era is like pizza to me. It nearly always hits the spot. I prefer the human league lineup with ware and marsh but this is definitely choice synthpop. There is something about the relative flatness/stiffness of the delivery style that I find endlessly entertaining. An evolution from Kraftwerk that even members of Kraftwerk appreciated.

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Wed Jun 09 2021
5

80s vibes at their finest.

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Fri Apr 09 2021
5

WOW!!! What a surprise! Incredibly synth-heavy pop, I had never heard of this band and was ready to write it off seeing that they're responsible for "Don't You Want Me," which is a fucking crime because that song slaps! Seriously, incredible album, it's immediately going into the rotation. I'll be listening to a lot more of this band going forward. Favorite Songs: 1. The Things That Dreams are Made of 3. The Sound of the Crowd (HOLY SHIT THAT SYNTH!) 4. Darkness (Incredible, seriously) 8. Seconds 9. Love Action

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Mon Oct 12 2020
5

Absolute classic 70s synth pop This shit hard as fuck

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Fri Apr 02 2021
5

Absolute Jams

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Mon Aug 02 2021
5

Love it, seminal new wave, can hear the influence on so many later electro-pop bands. Sparse, melodic hooks, great beats. So many hits here, favourite is probably Love Action.

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Wed Mar 31 2021
4

Great flash back.

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Mon May 03 2021
4

Seminal synth-pop record with a dark flair which recalls their previous albums or even Ultravox's. A few of them are best songs of the genre

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Wed Apr 07 2021
4

This is kinda like Devo meets Bowie imo (but with a more pop vibe), I dig it!

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Fri Nov 05 2021
4

Having learned recently about the evolution of electronic music and the early prominence of this album in the synthpop movement helped me appreciate this album. It definitely has that 80s synthpop sound, but I didn't realize previously how influential this album was in creating that sound. There are some aspects of this album that sound dated now, but given the technology that they were working with and the uncharted territory that they were moving into, this is a really cool album 4/5

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Sun Sep 11 2022
4

A synth-pop 80s purgatory is a better place to be than a 80s post-punk hell.

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Sun Sep 18 2022
4

I didn't think I was going to enjoy this all that much but this synthy, new wave shit is pretty fun. "Don't You Want Me" is the big hit for a reason. What a jam. The first couple songs I kept thinking, if it weren't for Kraftwerk...

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Fri Jul 22 2022
2

This list really loves low-stakes 70s and 80s one hit wonders that are all but forgotten outside of classic rock radio stations that play on an endless loop in the workplace as bland, inoffensive background noise. Not. Fucking. Essential.

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Sun Sep 11 2022
2

I think Purgatory was just the 80's.

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Tue Jul 20 2021
1

stinky 80s cheese 🧀

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Fri Apr 23 2021
1

really quite shite. all sounds the same. like he got a casio keyboard for christmas.

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Sun Aug 15 2021
1

No, I don’t want you. Never did

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Tue Jun 08 2021
5

This barely made it onto my favourite list, I just can't deny it's catchy as hell and great whenever it pops up on the radio

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Sun Nov 28 2021
5

I never owned this album in the 80s, but I wished I had. Given the large number of albums where the non-hit tracks weren’t great, I think I would have liked most of this album then. Still, better late than never. My favorite Human League song (“Don’t You Want Me”)appears on this album. How surprising that the lead singer thought it the weakest track on the album and buried it at the end of side B. It is still my favorite song on the album, but I’m glad to have some new candidates for the position after listening to this album. “The Things That Dreams Are Made Of” is a great song! I’m not sure how I missed it all these years (I think it was released as a single?) but glad to know it now. “Open Your Heart” was a single in the UK (not sure about the US) that I also missed. I quite like this song as well. “The Sound of the Crowd” is really fun and catchy and makes me want to go to all the 80s clubs. So much 80s fun! By the third listen I liked all the songs on this. Amazed to hear a Casio VL-1 as the sole instrument on “Get Carter”. Too cool! Great album!

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Fri Jan 21 2022
5

I am very familiar with THE HUMAN LEAGUE and the DARE album. I have it and I’m a casual fan of the band. The early material is interesting but not up to their more poppier efforts. The band has some hits and misses on their other albums, but DARE is one of those perfect albums. After re-listening to DARE, my opinion has not changed this is a really great album. Every single song is catchy and extremely enjoyable to listen it. It is the most popular HUMAN LEAGUE album and in this case the best one, deservedly so. Pop wins out on this one. In 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die, DARE is the only album included. Rate Artist: THE HUMAN LEAGUE (4.0) Rate Album (Year): DARE (1981 Original) (5.0) Ranking of THE HUMAN LEAGUE - DARE songs 01) The Things That Dreams Are Made Of 4:15 10.0/10 02) Open Your Heart 3:56 10.0/10 03) The Sound Of The Crowd 4:05 10.0/10 04) Darkness 3:59 09.0/10 05) Do Or Die 5:25 10.0/10 06) Get Carter 1:02 08.0/10 07) I Am The Law 4:08 10.0/10 08) Seconds 4:59 10.0/10 09) Love Action (I Believe In Love) 5:00 10.0/10 10) Don't You Want Me 3:57 10.0/10 Original 1981 Release 97.0/100 = 97.0 / 2 = 4.85

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Wed Mar 30 2022
5

Brilliant. Soooo 1980s but who cares? Catchy tunes, all excellent - not a bad track on the album.

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Fri Jul 01 2022
5

80's nostalgia. brilliant.

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Fri Jul 01 2022
5

The 3rd HL album, for some strange reason the first two albums are not universally liked but Dare is one of the best albums from the 80s, must be the perfect pop album ever.

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Thu Jul 21 2022
5

Synthtastic!

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Fri Sep 09 2022
5

Silly 80's album like I love

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Fri Sep 16 2022
5

I can't resist.

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Wed Sep 28 2022
5

Used to listen to this on my Walkman at college during lunch time playing the 1942 arcade machine in the leisure centre across the road. Good times. A cracking album btw. One that’s often mimicked, but rarely bettered.

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Sun Oct 02 2022
5

Pre-listening thought: YES, I’ve been excited to get this. Post-listening thought: HELL YEAH!

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Wed Nov 16 2022
5

It took me a bit, but I'm really getting into this record. The first songs to really catch my attention were "I Am The Law" and "Seconds." Those slower tracks seem stranger to me. More weird soundscapes and bizarre little accents crafted with the synths. (There's a fantastic LCD Soundsystem cover of "Seconds" that is worth checking out!) Those strange, early-synth/electronic Kraftwerk-inspired elements are evident elsewhere in the record. But, coming to this record from 2022, it was hard for me to get into the sound which (A.) has been parodied and mimicked to death, (B.) reeks distinctly of chart-topping pop music from a decade I don't particularly care for, and (C.) sounds cheesy and dated in the same way proto-CGI work in a film always feels cheesy and dated. But, as with those film effects, such knee-jerk aversions to early technology in art are best looked past as they really have very little to do with the music. It's just the unfortunate effect of perspective. So, now that I'm into it, I'm digging it. I think the second half of the album, from the instrumental "Get Carter" through the immortal "Don't You Want Me," is seriously fantastic stuff. The front half still feels a little single-focused to me, and a bit less cohesive. But it doesn't take at all away from the album's flow. I think that kind of pro/faux-commercial wink is a very important part of the band's identity, as it was many other bands of the era from Devo to Frankie Goes to Hollywood and even some 80s Bowie. The band name as well as the album title and art—such weird stuff going on with typeface and that cropping haha—certainly supports that. Overall, it's an amazing, essential album buoyed by what is quite possibly an even more amazing backstory behind it's creation. (Seriously, has no one made a movie about this yet?) I've had a great time jamming to this today and an incredible turn around with it. I went in thinking it would be a 3. But honestly, think I'm going to give it a 5! I can't think of any good reason why I shouldn’t.

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Thu Nov 17 2022
5

Beautiful

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Thu Jun 10 2021
4

Is sort of a generic 80s synth-pop album (which isn't a bad thing) until the last track. "Don't You Want Me" is quite possibly one of the best (if not THE best) pop songs from the 80s, that song alone bumps this album up a full star from 3/5 to 4/5 for me. Such a banger of a song.

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Thu Oct 01 2020
4

really fun!

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Thu Jul 01 2021
4

Synths. Synths everywhere. And I loved it. The Sound of the Crowd is SO SO good - I could have that on repeat for hours.

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Mon Jun 14 2021
4

Das good shit. Funky, part disco, poppy, just a classic and more

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Fri Feb 19 2021
4

Synthy jams.

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Mon Apr 19 2021
4

Nice eighties pop

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Thu Mar 25 2021
4

This band is funny in a Kraftwerk and Devo sort of way. Hard not to like it, it's weird and friendly. Oh, I actually know "Don't You Want Me", that was a surprise. I like that song. This was a good listen.

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Thu Jun 17 2021
4

Another 80s album with great synthesizers and off-putting vocals, but this one quickly grew on me. I still think the vocals are kind of kitschy and camp (and I don't know if they were intended to sound that way or not), but they work fairly well here.

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Sun Jan 24 2021
4

Esa cancioncita de entrada qué cursilería y el álbum es un poco eso, pero qué disfrutable. Sus sintetizadores (algo que disfruto tanto de la música) y los beats son algo a lo que puedo regresar con un mood específico. "Do or Die" quizá fue mi preferida, con ese motivo que se repite en ciertas partes de la canción. Y ni cómo negar el hitazo "Don't You Want Me", aunque me parece desigual respecto al álbum... con todo y que creo que es similar a la primera. Quizá el problema que tengo con el álbum es que de pronto, me esperaba más en ciertas canciones. En fin, 8.5/10

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Sun Jan 24 2021
4

8/10 ta gueno y don't you want me es un rolololololon.

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Sun Apr 04 2021
4

really good album. wasnt sure if i was going to like it but it does work well and i do indeed like it a lot

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Wed Jul 14 2021
4

I've always enjoyed this. Has some slower and darker album songs, but six of the 10 are outstanding.

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Mon Jun 28 2021
4

Great 80’s pop. Catchy and fun

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Mon Jun 28 2021
4

Don't you want me baby! Don't you want me oooooohhh! Great album, think I'm learning that I generally like 80s pop?

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Sat Apr 10 2021
4

Großartiger Synthie Pop / New Wave. Don't you want me - Smash hit!

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Wed Apr 28 2021
4

Classic synth-pop album with some all-time great songs from the genre. The lead singers voice might get grating though on repeat listens.

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Wed Jun 16 2021
4

Fun to listen to, had only heard "don't you want me" before, was happy to hear some more from them.

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Tue Jun 01 2021
4

Really cool album Most songs have an interesting sound and speak to me. Cool use of piano and guitar 4.5/5

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Thu Jul 22 2021
4

Synth-tastic! Paved the way for the shit I listen to today.

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Fri Jul 23 2021
4

Loved it. So funny and clever.

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Fri Jul 30 2021
4

This is very 80s. Like the most 80s thing imaginable. I liked it though. The Sound of The Crowd and I Am The Law are highlights.

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Thu Sep 16 2021
4

Rating: 7/10 Best songs: The things that dreams are made of, The sound of the crowd, Seconds, Don’t you want me

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Fri Sep 24 2021
4

A classic early 80s synth pop album, a lot of fun to listen to. It was one of the first cassettes I owned, so it saw a lot of play in my house. Coming back to hear it now, I'm struck by the simplicity of it. The sound is crisp, the arrangements deliberately flat and cold. Phil Oakey's commanding baritone vocal is a centerpiece of this music, another instrument in its own right. The songwriting is simple but sophisticated, touching rather poetically on themes like alienation and sexual politics. And surprisingly for such a aloof sounding band, Phil Oakey for the most part comes off as an optimist, someone who still believes in love, who still believes we hold the power to find what we need in this life... if we dare to look for it. "Don't You Want Me" is incredibly catchy, a perfect pop song and a stone cold classic that belongs in any time capsule of this era. Funny to find out it's the last song on the album because Oakey didn't particularly care for it. Fave Songs: Don't You Want Me, Darkness, Love Action, Open Your Heart

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Mon Sep 27 2021
4

minimal, clean synth sounds, cool production but still warm to hear. Surprisingly good tunes beyond just the singles, especially 'The things that dreams are made of' and 'The Sound of the crowd' and 'Get Carter/I am the law'.

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Fri Oct 01 2021
4

as with so many other albums on this list, this one was a distinct moment in time. it happens that this was a moment i was there for, and remember pretty well. i didn't know what any of it meant at the time, but i was very happy to hear disco's influence fading, and to see whatever new wave was going to bring. it felt, in the best possible way, like living in the future - and a future that was full of possibility and all that stuff, even if it knew it was a weird future. that said, love action was a nice surprise. i'm sure i've heard it any number of times, but this was the first time i really paid attention. seconds was a good surprise, too. and naturally, the big hit is always cool to hear.

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Thu Oct 28 2021
4

I’ve listened to a lot of the tracks on the album individually but never as an album. This was released just before I came of age musically but the tracks have always been there in my life. I enjoy the synth and electronic sounds of the new wave/romantics it has aged a bit but it was the start of a new musical direction. I didn’t realise that seconds was a homage to JFK, quite an interesting song

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Fri Nov 19 2021
4

Very good formative synthpop album. The opening track is almost "violently" 80s. The rest is a little same, but still very enjoyable. Best tracks "These Are The Things" "I Am The Law" "Don't You Want Me"

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Thu Nov 25 2021
4

So many sounds, would sound amazing on vinyl. 80s overload. WILL BUY.

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Sun Nov 28 2021
4

This is good, synth-y 80s pop. I don't think I'd ever heard the whole album. I liked Don't You Want Me well enough when it was released but I think I've heard it enough in the last 40 years. I really liked the songs on this album that were less familiar to me, especially The Things That Dreams Are Made Of and Seconds.

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Sun Nov 28 2021
4

I am familiar with The Human League, but not this entire album. This is authentic synth-pop of the 80s. I enjoy being taken back to this time in music from time to time.

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Sun Nov 28 2021
4

Oh how excited I was for this. Early 80s English synth-pop was my jam back in the day, and one of my favorite songs ever is "Don't You Want Me." The first couple of listens through, it seemed like too much of the same thing, and I got a little bored. Philip Oakey's monotone, so cool in each song on its own, gets a bit much over ten in a row. This is not to say that I didn't enjoy it! I did! But maybe I had my expectations too high. Maybe sometimes it's okay to love a single more than its album. I will keep listening to this one, though, until I know for sure.

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Sun Dec 12 2021
4

“Chock-full of precise, memorable melodies delivered with style and humour.”

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Thu Dec 16 2021
4

Saved Prior: Love Action (I Believe In Love), Don't You Want Me Off Rip: The Things That Dreams Are Made Of, Open Your Heart, The Sound Of The Crowd, Do Or Die, I Am The Law, Seconds Cutting Edge: Darkness Overall Notes: Despite the large quantity of songs saved (all but 1 were at least on my Cutting Edge playlist) and Don't You Want Me being one of my favorite songs of all time, this album was simply above average. It's good and most of the songs have multiple good elements to them, but they rarely come together to form a truly transcendently great song (Don't You Want Me being the only exception good lord is that song good). I liked it better than the Eurythmics album for sure, but nothing close to Depeche Mode. Lots of good songs, a couple very good songs, one incredible one.

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Wed Dec 29 2021
4

Songs for my wife to be. Fabulous album full of memory.

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Fri Jan 07 2022
4

This is the proudest I've been to be from Sheffield, apart from when "The Full Monty" was screened on a flight I was on and I ran up and down the plane singing "You Can Leave Your Hat On" with nothing but a sick bag over my jaffas, all the way to Bangkok. "Seconds" is the best song about an assassin since Peter Gabriel's the year before.

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Mon Jan 10 2022
4

4/5. Don’t You Want Me is an all time banger, album is kinda inconsistent tho

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Thu Jan 27 2022
4

very 80s.... kinda sassy growing on me tho!

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Wed Feb 02 2022
4

classic pop, with really human synths, and great tunes.

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Wed Feb 23 2022
4

Quite uneven, but the hits are classics

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Wed Mar 02 2022
4

"we thought that hair styles would be the first thing to date"

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Wed Mar 02 2022
4

I'm not entitrely sure what Love Action is, but they've got it in spades.

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Wed Mar 02 2022
4

Fantastic album full of analog synth goodness. Slight dip at the beginning of side B but starts and finishes very strongly.

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Thu Mar 10 2022
4

Phil Oakey's voice is perhaps the bit that's aged least well.but the songs are bulletproof.

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Fri Mar 18 2022
4

Let's be honest. When I first heard of Human League... way, way back when, on Solid Gold with Dionne Warwick, I didn't know any better than to think it was DEVO. Reflect and consider. Am I wrong? Are we not men? We are De-Vo. I also never went back and listened to an actual Human League record since then, but they were undeniably part of 80's synth and beyond. I only really magnetized back to them thanks to George Michael kind of (really) ripping them off with Shoot The Dog. But he really gave respect (I hope that gets through) except for the political disrespect. Tony's lonely wife. Whatever errant directions they might have tried later this record is imaginative, regardless of whether 80's synth pop is now considered cringe. But this is Phil talking... I wanta tell you, what I've found to be truuue...!

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Mon Mar 28 2022
4

This is seminal synth-pop. A logical evolution from Kraftwerk with enough danceable hooks and melodies to make it appealing to the masses. I think they did it better than many of their contemporaries, eg Duran Duran, Gary Numan and Depeche Mode. I really like it when they get a bit darker on Seconds. They only had relatively simple electronic instruments but they really make the best of it with some very humanistic melodies.

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Mon Mar 28 2022
4

I think that the opening side is a killer, especially the first 3 tracks, Sound of the Crowd being my favourite. Side 2 drags a bit, then redeems it self with "Don't You Want Me". I agree with Oakley that this hit isn't one of their stronger songs, but the opening chords are unforgettable, like "Cars" by Gary Numan or "The Model" by Kraftwerk. It's funny, the story about how, three days before having to go on tour (without a band) Oakley saw these these two teenage girls dancing in a nightclub and invited them to join the band as "incidental vocalists". They got consent from their parents and they're still touring!

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Mon Mar 28 2022
4

For Christmas one year didn't George Costanza  hand out cards that said "A donation in your name has been made to The Human League." Anyway, "Don't You Want Me" sure was a kick ass song. It was played like crazy during university but I'm still not sick of it. Some of this album sounds a tad dated now but it sure was cool back in the day. Another notch in Virgin's pistol.

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Mon Mar 28 2022
4

7/10 DON'T YOU LOVE ME BABE?!

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Sun Apr 03 2022
4

Generally extremely catchy and entertaining. Some of the lyrics may be a bit silly or repetitive, but it really, strangely, doesn't take away from the enjoyment I got from listening to this album. Of course it has the absolute masterpiece of 'Don't You Want Me Baby,' but I think it starts with a sleeper hit with 'The Things That Dreams Are Made Of.' The energy in the song is easy to catch, and it carries through the majority of the album. 'I Am The Law' unfortunately slows things down a bit, but leaving the big hit for the end makes sure you're left on an upbeat, positive note.

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Wed Apr 13 2022
4

Classic 80s band with their best song

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Mon Apr 25 2022
4

A trip down memory lane..clubbing in Honolulu…great tunes

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Thu May 12 2022
4

Great album, full of bouncing brooding electronic beats and melodies

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Wed Jun 15 2022
4

I'm now a Human League fan.

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Fri Jul 01 2022
4

Disco rock style. Don't you want to listen?

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Fri Jul 01 2022
4

Never listened to it at the time, but actually quite nice as background music and that 80s feel.

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Thu Jul 21 2022
4

“You’re really going to give this album a 4 because of the last song being so iconic?!!?!? 😡😡” “Yes.”

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Sun Jul 31 2022
4

An easy 4 stars!

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Wed Aug 03 2022
4

Leuke popsongs waarbij ik al snel meezong of neuriede. Spijtig dat geen enkel nummer een deftige Outro heeft

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Thu Aug 25 2022
4

A real mixed bag of an album. The singles are the stand out tracks - Sound of the Crowd, Love Action, Open Your Heart and especially Don't You Want Me. The other tracks less impressive, even after repeated listens. The singles get Dare an extra star

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Thu Sep 08 2022
4

I do love this 80s full on cheese! I think the synths are amazing and it's such a feel good vibe. Don't you want me baby is such a classic but also reminds me of lockdown days when I created a cover and music video fueled by about 10 gallons of rosé... I really enjoyed bits of Do or Die with no vocals and it's an all around great album for me apart from the track called Seconds I didn't enjoy the shouty vocals and I'm not sure why other than that I just don't like that one lol. I already have quite a good appreciation for the Human League but didn't know any other tracks on this album before so that's fun too. Good start to the week as I'm listening on a Monday!

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Mon Sep 19 2022
4

So fun

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Mon Sep 19 2022
4

Excellent, and probably light years ahead of its time. Haven’t listened to Side B yet though as I am too sleepy

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Fri Sep 23 2022
4

Deeper than I expected

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Fri Sep 23 2022
4

I could get down to this. 6/10

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Sun Oct 02 2022
4

Have a soft spot for this brand of synth-pop. I know in good conscience this could be left out of a 1001 albums list, but Don't You Want Me is just perfect so this gets a 4 from me.

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Mon Oct 24 2022
4

i love synth pop

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Mon Nov 07 2022
4

One of the first albums to incorporate synths into pop so flawlessly, thus affecting the way pop music sounds to this day. I believe the influence of this album reaches recent pop stars such as Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift, and Dua Lipa. It's a fantastic and short album, with highlights all throughout. Pulls in audiences with the energetic tracks and ends with the hits. As sad as it is for bands to break apart, this album is much more polished, accessible, and coherent than anything Heaven 17 put together. The synths are fun, loud, exciting, and all over, feeling spacious and a bit industrial or futuristic. The vocalists are enthusiastic and almost robotic-like, continuing this trend once started by the likes of Kraftwerk. I appreciate the supporting female vocalist, not necessary, but adding another layer to the club singalong vibe. "I am the Law" is the only "weak" song but also the most atmospheric and still nestles tightly between the others. Last 3 tracks are just incredible.

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Thu Nov 10 2022
4

So this is at least an automatic 3 if only because of "Don't You Want Me", which is an absolute monster classic. But Open Your Heart and The Sound of the Crowd have a lot of the same DNA as that monster classic, which makes them very enjoyable in their own right. Do or Die is alternately bouncy and dark and moody and totally works even though the vocals and synths don't sound like they should work together at all. Side 2 is a bit more scattered - I Am the Law doesn't work despite having a similar template as Do or Die. A couple of friends and I are all doing independent listening projects concurrently - I'm maybe 15 albums in front of them. One of them rated this album 1 star, which I think I can understand since I was 7 when that monster classic hit #1 in the US, and a lot of what I listened to or saw on early MTV sounds somewhat similar (and was everywhere), while they are a few years younger than me. I was harsh on Dylan in an earlier review for seemingly coasting on older folks' nostalgia, but here I am doing the same thing with The Human League of all things. Hmm.

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Wed Nov 16 2022
4

At first I really disliked this album. Mostly because the suite of retro synths, drum machines, and digital reverbs used in "Dare" has become so associated with 80s tropes that it was difficult for me to access it as anything other than a gimmick. I also feel like lyrics were less of a priority for the members of the band than were sound design and melody. As a result several songs on the album sounded like perfectly decent synth instrumentals that had been retrofitted with lines from a children's book or a teenager's diary. I'm not sure if saying that the writers were being intentionally trite for ironic effect would be giving them too much credit, or if my "modern" ear (trained on the irony of such genres as vapor wave and hyper pop) imbues anything so directly commercial sounding with an implicit sardonicism, or if indeed this was all part of the intended affect. Despite all this, perhaps I was rewired by the sparks and glam and 80s circuitry, because I was really enjoying this album by the time it ended. "The Sound of the Crowd" was the first one that caught my ear, because of the strange vocal processing at the end of the chorus and the unconventional songwriting style in general. I also really liked "Darkness", "Do or Die", "Seconds" and "I am the Law" for similar sound design reasons. There were times when the drum machines struck up a great groove, and the synth arpeggios tickled the stereo field in a way that still felt fresh to my nostalgia-suspicious ear. The weakest song for me was actually the single "Don't You Want Me"; the writing feels a bit clunky to me. As a whole, this album is pretty good! I wish I could have heard this when it first came out to hear how it was situated in its contemporary cultural environment. I don't think I had a good angle of approach from the launch pad of all the "Stranger-Things"-type shows and reheated synthwave tropes that abound in today's cultural repertoire, but the trail that "Dare" blazed still feels interesting, if now a little over-trodden.

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Wed Nov 16 2022
4

Lovely little album. Can't help but feel that they're a one hit wonder with Don't You Want Me, but I don't know anything about The Human League.

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Thu Nov 17 2022
4

Запомнил только Don't you want me baby, пушто единственная раньше была в плейлисте. Годные синты, тот самый "дебильный" по моим детским меркам звук, который стал нравится в 20+. Но хочется уже выйти за рамки 20 века, и особенно 80-ых. Может, новый альбом хотя бы 2000ых?

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Thu Nov 24 2022
4

Human League is a group I've always had on my "need to check them out more" list. This album has highs and lows for me. I love all of the synths being used, but there are some tunes where the use of portamento is kind of exhausting. But songs like Do or Die and Don't You Want Me are undeniable bangers. Overall good, I would give this a spin again. 3.5/5

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Sun Dec 04 2022
4

Yes! 80’s pop is very much to my taste. Even better, I’m pretty sure I only know one song from this album, which means I’ll have a lot to discover and (hopefully) enjoy a lot. Let’s listen! Songs I already knew: Don’t You Want Me Favourites: Don’t You Want Me, Open Your Heart, Love Action It saddens me that nobody seems to make music like this any more. The sound of the drums, the overuse of synths, the style of singing - it all got stuck in the 80s and never made it further. Perhaps it may have overstayed it’s welcome if it did continue longer, but I do wish we still had new music to look forward to that sounded like this. My only critique is that I Am The Law felt much less exciting to me, but otherwise this was full of very good songs. If you’ve somehow never heard The Human League before, I’d be happy to recommend trying this album.

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Mon Sep 14 2020
3

A little bare for my tastes, but fun.

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Wed Jul 14 2021
3

So, it's got that one song on it. You may not know the song, until you hear it, and then you're like, yeah, that one. So anyway, it's at the very end, and while the songs you have to wade through to get there aren't all bad, they're not that great either. Best track: Don't You Want Me

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Fri Jan 22 2021
3

Similar to soft cell in that I wanted so much more from the album. Disappointed

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Wed Feb 24 2021
3

MEGET elektronisk, som om en kun keyboard og trommemaskine. Kun et hit og det er heller noget særligt. Ikke min stil

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Fri Mar 26 2021
3

I came in wanting to like this but no, I was right the first time - human league are annoying. Interesting to hear the craftwerk influences though. Don’t you want me is a tune

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Thu Mar 25 2021
3

I know The Human League were pioneers in this sound, but it never did a whole lot for me. I always found it a bit cheesy, I like the instrumentation more than than the vocal stylings, but even then it's a little cheesy sometimes as well.

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Thu Feb 25 2021
3

Nostalgia again for me. I was raised on Human League. There are definitely some bangers on here, but unfortunately it's nothing that stands out as an amazing album, except for it ending on two belters

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Thu Jul 08 2021
3

10 canciones y 40 minutos. Desde el principio es puro sonido 80. En este disco está su gran, gran éxito: "Don't you want me". El disco bastante flojo para mi gusto, va mejorando hacia el final: Seconds, Love Actions y el remate de su éxito como última canción. Le doy 3 estrellas justitas.

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Mon May 10 2021
3

Ganz nett

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Mon May 31 2021
3

3.8 + Solid 80s synth pop mixed with some interesting experiments like “I Am the Law.” Kraftwerk fingerprints all over but with enough pop to set it apart. “Don’t You Want Me” is a radio favorite, too. “Love Action” limps along towards the end. The track ordering is a little whacky - I can’t think of many albums where the smash hit appears last.

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Fri Jul 16 2021
3

Really good actually

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Sun Jan 24 2021
3

Underground-y y pop-y a la vez. Lo que me pareció cool: grandes percusiones, tanto las de instrumentos como las de los beats electrónicos e incluso las percusiones que no sé si en realidad cuenten como percusiones porque vienen más bien del bajo. Como que no son sonidos súper catchy, pero sí lo suficiente para que me mantengan entretenido. No es mi estilo y no creo regresar al disco, pero he de admitir que suena bastante cool sobre todo las canciones como The Sound of the Crowd, Darkness y Seconds que suenan postpunk (quizás por la voz y las percusiones muy graves características del género?) con una fusión movidona disco-ish. Me imagino que está cool para los apreciadores del synth pop como andruk. 7/10. Track que más disfruté: Love Action por lo refrescante que ha de haber sido escuchar algo disco con una voz que no fuera irritablemente aguda.

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Wed Apr 07 2021
3

It was pretty solid, very fun 80s pop! I liked it

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Wed Mar 17 2021
3

it was different, not bad, just not something I'd listen to every day

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Fri Jun 11 2021
3

Had some head hopping but it’s very one paced. I was a bit disappoint, but I had high expectations. The last song creeps into a 3, I’ll prob be singing this all day now.

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Fri Jun 11 2021
3

For an album that's as old as me, I find the use of instruments available at that time fascinating. And they definitely saved the best for last. Overall, I just don't think the songwriting is particularly good, I would probably have enjoyed it more if it was instrumental. 6.5/10

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Fri Jun 11 2021
3

Wasn’t interested in listening to this but it was actually ok. Pure 80s pop with all their hits made it semi-enjoyable.

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Fri Jun 11 2021
3

Fun listen. Top quality pop musicj. I respect savin the banger til the end. And WHAT a banger!

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Fri Feb 19 2021
3

fine

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Thu Feb 25 2021
3

It was good but mainly because of the last track on the album

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Fri Apr 23 2021
3

Great singles. A bit much as an album, all very similar.

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Wed Mar 24 2021
3

Alright. I thought I was gonna like it more.

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Thu Feb 25 2021
3

I can have a good time if I am high or drunk listening to this in a party xD! The fake instruments are very funny but 1981.. Quite progressive I guess! Also the "Don't You Want Me" chorus is a hit, haha! 3 stars.

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Tue May 25 2021
3

Some good songs, some not so much. Don't you want me baby is an iconic 80's hit, this song alone raises the rating to three stars.. However, the first part of the album is quite meh.

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Thu Jul 15 2021
3

was one of a handful of LPs in the house in the 80s - can't say i'd give it much of a spin now other than for some curious nostalgia

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Wed Apr 14 2021
3

bof sans trop d'intérêt fav: the sound of the crowd, Darkness (assez cool), Hard times aussi (DU-Dududu-dududu) On sent que ça a influencé MGMT par exemple 6/10

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Tue Jun 22 2021
3

I thought this would be better, being that I love 80's new wave electronic music - but only a couple of good tunes and one banger being Dont You Want Me. 3 stars

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Sun Jun 20 2021
3

Yup. Surprising that the #1 single was the last song on the album.

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Fri May 07 2021
3

Don't you want me was a standout from the rest

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Tue May 18 2021
3

Classic 80s synth pop, Human League were one of the best of that genre. Lots of it sounds a bit dated and cheesy now but the melodies and hooks are still strong.

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Sat Jul 24 2021
3

Unapologetically 80s. Interesting track placement but generally enjoyable

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Sun Aug 01 2021
3

Synthpop at its best

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Mon Aug 09 2021
3

This is the kind of synth pop that is unapologetic in its sounds. angular, refusing to blend. the task then is more in stacking them, which sounds like what I am in for. This almost feels like a less fun DEVO. Or like listening to a very poetic retro gamer stream. Some songs have interesting hooks but I'm just not super interested in the sounds. Don't You Want Me Baby keeps this from being a 2 star for me. Seconds is a good track.

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Wed Aug 11 2021
3

Pretty good album, defintley a huge influence on a lot of the new wave that came later on in the decade.

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Mon Aug 23 2021
3

Not bad. Obviously there’s the hit at the end, but the majority of the album is some pretty cool 80s synth pop. I’d listen again.

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Fri Sep 03 2021
3

Kind of interesting meld of 80s new wave pop and 80s German electronica, even though these guys were from Sheffield (!?) I found it nostalgia-inducing but ultimately a little hard to listen to all the way through.

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Wed Sep 08 2021
3

9/22 3.5/5. Classic 80s synth-pop, not a preferred genre of mine but it's good at what it does. Standout Tracks: The Things That Dreams Are Made Of, Darkness, Seconds

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Fri Sep 10 2021
3

Pretty good. Only really know them for ‘Don’t You Want Me’ so it was nice to hear other, darker, material.

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Fri Sep 24 2021
3

I mean, it's fun man. I think that's it at the end of the day. Don't you want me baby? Classic as it gets.

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Wed Sep 29 2021
3

Well it's a decent dance/pop/now wave record with one great song. 3 🌟

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Fri Oct 15 2021
3

Aside from Don't You Want Me, none of the songs really caught my attention.

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Thu Oct 21 2021
3

Ah Phil and the Girl fans! what a difference from the first iteration, but I think Phil Oakey was always a "Pop Star in Waiting" rather than an Alt-Rock star. "The Things that Dreams are made of" & "Love Action" my pick of the tracks althoug I also Like "Get Carter". A good early 80's piece of serious pop.

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Fri Oct 29 2021
3

Buen disco. Muy movido, pero Don’t you want me se lleva el disco por mucho

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Sun Nov 07 2021
3

An album from the 80s that doesn’t indulge in itself for once. Though some songs tend to plod due to lack of editing, the synth melodies and catchy vox are enough to keep things moving through the slow spots.

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Fri Dec 31 2021
3

Solid and catchy 80s synth pop that is unfortunately too repetitive to justify a 4 stars

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Fri Dec 31 2021
3

Classic 80s pop that provides a cool sound that masks a lack of great songwriting. Most of the album follows the exact same tempo and feels like a trial of songs in pursuit of their biggest single, which is the only major highlight of the album given its domination of shopping radio playlists at stores.

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Thu Jan 06 2022
3

She never even worked in a cocktail bar. Frauds. Good album doe

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Fri Jan 07 2022
3

Flash Back

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Fri Jan 14 2022
3

Cool synths

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Sun Jan 16 2022
3

Sintpopični možda recimo klasik? Ne znam, ne mora biti, ali ovaj cover mi je dosta poznat, viđao sam ga, bar što se tiče ovog žanra i ružan je! Prva strana albuma je sasvim dobra, ne mogu reć. Meni taj synthpop prolazi, ali nije koji će mi ostat onako u rotaciji. Ako me razumijete. Može se poslušat, a sad da ću si pustit to, bar sad još uvijek ne letim za ovim synthpopom.

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Sun Jan 16 2022
3

Solidan

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Wed Jan 19 2022
3

Don't you want me baby

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Fri Jan 21 2022
3

pas dingo mais je ne peux ignorer le banger don’t you want me ….

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Sun Jan 30 2022
3

80's synth pop tunes

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Fri Feb 04 2022
3

Cest correct pas plus.j'ai tout exoute et je me souviens presque plus. Peut être par e que à secoute bien en backgroudb? Probablement. 3.5

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Mon Feb 07 2022
3

Don’t really get the hype around this one… plenty in the genre better in my humblest of humble opinions.

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Wed Feb 09 2022
3

It's very heavy on the synth which I really wouldn't have a problem with, but the songs really feel like they bleed into one another. And the biggest banger on the soundtrack being right at the end is just uncool.

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Mon Feb 14 2022
3

Not bad. I now know the group who wrote Don’t you want me Baby

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Wed Mar 09 2022
3

Despite the morose whine and so-so lyrics, some of the best keyboarding ever.

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Mon Mar 21 2022
3

A big and small hit. The rest is rather mediocre. (5/10) FT: Don't You Want Me, Love Action (I Believe in Love)

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Sun Mar 27 2022
3

The sound of the 80’s

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Sun Apr 03 2022
3

Pop commercial

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Mon Apr 04 2022
3

Contrairement à mon camarade d'écoute le très peu éclairé roblumière, j?ai beaucoup apprecié cet album, qui aura même frôlé le 4 grâce à un très bon dernier son. J'ai notamment adoré le choix artistique de ce groupe, qui avant de lancer chaque piste de l'album, nous laisse nous balader pour quelques secondes dans les hautes herbes.

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Wed Apr 06 2022
3

Nothing I would go back to. Thought they sounded like the band that sings Don't You Want Me until I got to the last track and realized that it was!

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Wed Apr 06 2022
3

My sister bought this LP in my 80s childhood and boy I listened to it a whole lot. There is some forgettable stuff in the first half but the album, and the B side in particular, still holds up on its own terms.

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Fri Apr 08 2022
3

Not bad, just dated. High on the synthesizer. Very new wave.

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Mon Apr 18 2022
3

Alright. Not what I’d call a classic

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Wed Apr 20 2022
3

Some bumper 80e Cover art 3/5

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Wed May 04 2022
3

Dare is the third album by English synth-pop band The Human League. This album was recorded in the new wave of pop style, after the departure of two founding members of the band caused a shift from their prior avant-garde electronic style. This change in genre for the band paid off big once the singles from the album began releasing, and this album went on to define the synth-pop genre. The final track on the album is the single "Don't You Want Me" which became an international hit - as well as the band's biggest hit and the 25th highest selling single in the UK - after it was finally released against the band's frontman Philip Oakey's opinion who thought it was the weakest track on the album and shouldn't be a single. The album was on the UK chart for 71 weeks, being number 1 for a good chunk of that, and "Don't You Want Me" was the number 1 single during some of that time as well. With all this popularity, it's no surprise that the album has been certified triple platinum in the UK. As critically acclaimed as this album is, it's still pop music, and to me this genre's songs are easily forgettable and/or repeatable. I loved the single "Don't You Want Me", but obviously everyone in the world loved it too. The other tracks on the album weren't as special, but a few did stick out to me as good. Overall, this album is pretty amazing and did bring pop - and more specifically synth-pop - into the spotlight for the foreseeable future.

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Mon May 16 2022
3

The release year is important here, at least it is to me. The sound and style of this album sound dated to my ear now, and as someone who was a teen in the 80s, this kind of music is very familiar because it was quite common back then. But in 1981, it wasn't. That's what I mean by this album's release year's importance. Makes me understand how groundbreaking and influential this album really was. I don't particularly love the album overall, but that's because the higher frequencies that my ear hears in synth-based music kind of grates on me. No fault of the music or anything else; just how I experience it. Because of that, I don't listen to synth music. 'Don't You Want Me' is still a lot fun, though. I remember liking it back then and I still do.

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Wed May 18 2022
3

Not a fan of the band, especially when this album was first released. I didn't listen to any synth-based pop music on the radio, but reflecting back it does bring back a bit of nostalgia. You couldn't go anywhere without hearing their big hit, Don't You Want Me and it still remains an earwig in my mind once in a while. It's not always a bad thing.

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Sun May 29 2022
3

This album is very 80's but I enjoyed it.

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Mon May 30 2022
3

The more new wave albums I hear the more I realize it's not really that good. This is mostly boring and even the one song I like (Don't You Want Me) is kinda boring too. I'll give it an extra point because it was pretty influential but won't listen again.

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Wed Jun 01 2022
3

Really vacuous British voice + cheesy 80’s synth throughout made for a mediocre album at best. Don’t You Love Me is the classic on here and clearly the best song.

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Wed Jun 01 2022
3

Listened to on 5/31/22 3.5/5 Favorite song: don’t you want me Great background 80s music with a solid banger ending

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Fri Jun 10 2022
3

Aunque Don’t You Want Me de hecho me gusta bastante, el resto del disco es de ese horrible género del Synth Pop que suena a Ross jugando con su teclado. El disco se vuelve un poco largo y hay tracks que de plano no me encantan. Encima, hay una versión con remixes que la neta sí me salté. Alcanza la 3ª estrella solo porque si me gusta una rola.

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Wed Jun 15 2022
3

Quite enjoyable.

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Wed Jun 15 2022
3

Some good songs but far too repetitive

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Wed Jun 15 2022
3

Total 80's album.

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Wed Jun 15 2022
3

Massive album of the 80s. Contains big hit singles. And from my home city. I have problems. Although I like electric pop. 1 I haye the big drum sound. 2. The lyrics are a bit inane. 3. Oakey's voice is like nails down a blackboard to me. Will never love it. Sorry. Can't take away the big tines though. 3

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Thu Jun 30 2022
3

Reminded me a lot of Penthouse and Pavement (unsurprisingly) - and I enjoyed this one too. Catchy, quirky, synthy melodies aplenty, artfully treading the line between tacky and sophisticated - and that's before we even get to Don't You Want Me at the end. Something about it starts to grate after a while though. I think maybe I'm not a huge fan of the vocals. 3.5

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Thu Jul 21 2022
3

This album is like getting roped into an 80s dance hall filled with Tab

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Sun Jul 24 2022
3

80s are alive and well here.

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Thu Jul 28 2022
3

Early example of New Wave. Heavy on synthesizers, vocal effects. "Don't you want me baby" is the biggest hit off this album. I didn't recognize any other songs.

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Fri Jul 29 2022
3

Really, really 80s sounding synth-pop which I should love but I just couldn't get into it. 3.5/5

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Fri Aug 05 2022
3

Very 80s

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Wed Aug 10 2022
3

a lot better than i expected

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Fri Aug 19 2022
3

Solid synthpop - and unashamedly so. Melodies as solid as the synth cutting through your earholes. It dips a little in the middle but picks up the slack at the end. Best Tracks: The Sound of the Crowd; Love Action (I Believe in Love) Don't You Want Me

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Thu Sep 01 2022
3

Accidentally lisstened to this on shuffle

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Thu Sep 01 2022
3

Classic 80s music. Synths out the ass. Some pretty good songs on here although I though a lot of them sound very similar. I actually dont think i could tell you a song other than dont you want me and i just finished it 10 seconds ago. Shallow and pedantic 5/10

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Thu Sep 01 2022
3

If you mention this website when the play Don't You Want Me at Holiday Club this Friday, I'll buy you a beer

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Thu Sep 01 2022
3

Made me want to do the robot. Vibes were chill.

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Wed Sep 07 2022
3

The album feels very typical for 80's synth pop. It's still a fun listen. However, it does not feel very inspired. The synths are nice, the vocals are decent. There are some very good moments in this record but most of it feels very bland. The beginning of the record feels fun and fresh. The middle starts to drag very slowly. The last track on the record is easily the highest point. The most poppy, and most musically interesting track. Favorite Track: Don't You Want Me Least Favorite Track: I Am The Law

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Thu Sep 08 2022
3

Didn't mind it at all but it was fairly repetitive. Would enjoy all the tracks on their own but a whole album was a lot. Also, the Human League just makes me think of the electro episode of the Mighty Boosh. I AM ELECTRO BOY, I AM ELECTRO GIRL

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Thu Sep 08 2022
3

Wow this was SO of an era - could you get more 80s music..!? Probs not. Certainly enjoyed enough of this and better known songs, but have to say some of it was rather repetitive and probs needed a strong drink to go alongside. Don't you want me is obviously iconic - probs the right thing to put this at the end of an album and end on something more melodic and interesting

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Thu Sep 15 2022
3

I am not big into pop music history, and if I believe in paying respect to the most influential artists, then I do in a more theoretical way – not by making myself like it. But I do have to give kudos for paving a new way musically while writing absolutely iconic lines such as "Everybody needs cash to spend; Everybody needs love and affection; Everybody needs 2 or 3 friends" I am completely deaf to bleeps and bloops, but I can't help feeling some appreciation among weirdos

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