04/06/1981 at 01:00 AM EST
Not since a homely, skinny girl from Brooklyn named Barbra belted out People in 1964 has there been a more promising pop—not rock, mind you—female vocalist. Her tunes are catchier than the Bee Gees', she outsings Olivia Newton-John and she looks like Audrey Hepburn, Born near Glasgow, Scotland, she got her break last year when BBC-TV chose her as a struggling performer to groom for stardom. It wasn't long before she'd landed a record contract and two songs at once in the U.K. Top 10. Now 21, she's out to conquer the New World. Bypassing the bitch-in-boots or poor-poor-pitiful-me approaches of some contemporaries, she sings upbeat tunes that are mostly variations on "I love my man" themes. She does not compose but shows here that she has an ear for zesty tunes that have alluring hooks. Her first single, Morning Train (Nine to Five)—not to be confused with Dolly's hit—is a bouncy blend of shmaltz, joy and romance. Easton has a feminine sound, yet conveys the feeling that she is not merely a total woman with good pipes.