• Keys
  • The Keys Album (UK A&M) 1981 

This overlooked gem of a pop album was criminally ignored in England and never released in the States. The four Keys may wear their influences (mainly the Beatles and their producer, Joe Jackson) a bit too much on their sleeves — several of the songs sound unfortunately like outtakes from Joe’s Look Sharp! — but their knack for pretty melodies, close harmonies and intelligent lyrics make the overall sound original and fresh. And any band that can write such sparklers as “If It’s Not Too Much” and “I Don’t Wanna Cry” can be forgiven a few minor flaws.

[Karen Schlosberg]