13 Songs, 42 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

By 1979, U.S. radio was making room in a bigger way for the new sounds coming from cities in America and Britain. Thanks to that support, England's Joe Jackson scored a gold record with his first album, Look Sharp! While not as densely layered as Elvis Costello's Armed Forces, from the same year, the record provided lots of entertainment value. Like Costello, Jackson worked with a tensile three-piece band attuned to the meld of styles he packed into his music (the reggae of "Fools in Love" and "Sunday Papers," the jittery pop of "Baby Stick Around"). His biggest success would come with the less headlong fusion of genres on Night and Day, but Look Sharp! shows his sophistication and intelligence already in place.

EDITORS’ NOTES

By 1979, U.S. radio was making room in a bigger way for the new sounds coming from cities in America and Britain. Thanks to that support, England's Joe Jackson scored a gold record with his first album, Look Sharp! While not as densely layered as Elvis Costello's Armed Forces, from the same year, the record provided lots of entertainment value. Like Costello, Jackson worked with a tensile three-piece band attuned to the meld of styles he packed into his music (the reggae of "Fools in Love" and "Sunday Papers," the jittery pop of "Baby Stick Around"). His biggest success would come with the less headlong fusion of genres on Night and Day, but Look Sharp! shows his sophistication and intelligence already in place.

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