The Romantics

The Romantics

Never mind that the Yardbirds-ish '80s classic “What I Like About You” became a ubiquitous tune used in TV advertising to pimp everything from beer to sleepwear to cars to pro baseball teams. It’s actually one of the lesser songs on this incredible debut. Produced by Pete Solley (Procol Harum, Terry Reid), the album filters bands like The Kinks, Dave Clark Five, The Who, and The Move through British pub rock (Dave Edmonds), punk rock (The Jam), and Detroit garage (The Rationals), blasting it out in three-minute sing-alongs with lots of bashing guitars and Beatle harmonies. From the should-of-been-huge opener (“When I Look in Your Eyes”) to the Merseybeat-styled heartbreaker (“Tell It to Carrie”) to a mad little rave-up (“Little White Lies”) to a pure power popper (“Keep in Touch”), you can hear how the band was a vestige of the generation weaned on the British Invasion along with in-the-flesh exposure to ’60s Detroit music. This 1980 album captures the unmistakable sound of a young, shaggy-headed combo starting to live out a rock ’n’ roll dream.

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