Picks and Pans Review: Just the Way You Like It

updated 10/15/1984 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 10/15/1984 AT 01:00 AM EDT

The S.O.S. Band

Since it emerged from the Atlanta area in the late 70s, the S.O.S. Band has regularly scored with sweet R&B music. Even the group's debut album went gold. Until Just the Way You Like It, its fifth album, the band was made up of eight members; though they are now pared down to a quintet on tour, all the original crew of eight made it into the studio for this effort. Part of the credit for the distinctive S.O.S. sound must go to outside songwriters Terry Lewis and James Harris III, who concocted No One's Gonna Love You, Weekend Girl, Break Up and the title track, all of which possess a magnetic yet controlled beat. The Lewis-Harris team also contributed the crossover hits Tell Me If You Still Care and Just Be Good to Me to the S.O.S.'s tasty On the Rise LP last year. Lewis and Jimmy Jam, both members of the Time, produced all these cuts, but it is the S.O.S. Band that puts the music across. Mary Davis' clarion vocals are complemented by Jason Bryant's sharp-toothed keyboards and supported by a rhythmic bottom that never drops out, provided by drummer Jerome Thomas and bassist John Simpson. Only when they accelerate the tempo, on the cut Body Break, does their charm fade. The S.O.S. Band is one soul outfit built for comfort, not for speed. (Tabu/CBS)

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