ABC's "The Lexicon of Love" is a lush, classy musical experience that is a definite listen for those only familiar with their singles.
This is one of those albums where the non-hits are just as good as the singles.
ABC basically bridged the gap between disco and the synth-heavy '80s dance music to come. I like to think of this album as a cross bewteen Chic and Roxy Music. It has funky rhythm and a suave lead singer crooning clever lyrics. At times it is positively majestic.
The album opens strong with "Show Me".
The single "Poison Arrow" is next, and its influence can still be heard in the dance music of today.
"Many Happy Returns" starts quietly but doesn't take long to heat up. The chorus has great drumming.
The funkiest track, and my favorite, is certainly "Tears Are Not Enough" (not to be confused with the 1985 single by Northern Lights, Canada's answer to USA for Africa). This one tops the three hit singles on the LP, IMO.
"Valentine's Day" starts out rougher than the other tracks, but a charming xylophone soon appears and although this song is largely instrumental it's my second favorite.
ABC's biggest hit "The Look of Love" is next, and still sounds as good as it did in 1982. I love the wailing at the end "Yipee-i-ayyy".
"Date Stamp" still has a dance beat, but seems more laid back than the previous cuts.
The slower, mid-tempo "All of My Heart" was the follow-up single to "Look of Love".
The weakest cut is "4 Ever 2 Gether". It's a little bit darker and different that everything else that has come before it.
A few of the songs on this album end abruptly, but it's great from start to finish.