It's my opinion that all Partridge Family albums live and die by their hooks, and by that standard "Crossword Puzzle" fares very well. It's a given that any PF album has it's share of treacly love songs, but when luck strikes these can be some of the best PF tracks. The sexy-sounding (but utterly safe) "I've Got Your Love All Over Me" is a prime example -- the featherweight lyric about being immersed in love is buoyed by the trademark PF backup ooohs and aaaahs. And under everything else are the Bell sessionmen, like Hal Blaine and Larry Knetchell, providing the toe-tapping rhythms and melodies.
I can't say that all of "Crossword Puzzle" is as catchy as that one track, but there are plenty of memorable moments. I'd keep "One Day At A Time" (upbeat, definitely used in the show), "As Long As There's You" (downbeat, but heartfelt), "Now That You've Got Me..." (yeah, a long-winded title, but I dig that change in dynamic at the chorus), "Come On Love" (a jaunty lite-rocker), and "I've Got Your Love...". Of the remaining five, "Sunshine" seems well-intentioned, and "It's A Long Way To Heaven" has a nice vocal by David.
Though the subsequent PF album, "Bulletin Board," includes three or four audio gems, "Crossword Puzzle" is the last must-have disc, in my opinion. This reissue is quite well done, with excellent remastered sound that's bound to be an improvement on existing analog sources. I'd have given this album five stars, had the label included a bonus track, or been more adventurous when equalizing their digital master. This PFamily album, in particular, had some fairly dynamic moments, rhythmically-speaking, though they were always buried in the original AM-radio-friendly mixdown. Oh well, I guess Arista was more interested in 'preserving' the original sound, which is reasonable.
I think "Crossword Puzzle" is one of the Partridge Family's better albums overall. It's certainly a good selection for new listeners or casual fans, who might wish to expand their PF collection.