- Shit Robot, that most unfortunately named DFA stalwart, has built a career on dependability—you could say to a fault. Stylistically, he may veer from synthy house and cheeky disco to something with vocals or a funk-laced backbone, but the execution is always straight down the middle. There are usually no surprises from Marcus Lambkin, just a buoyant beat and a few analog timbres to keep things colorful. This is one way to describe his latest single, and yet there's something unusual in his approach. Both sides of OB-8 / Torpedo use tension and prolonged grooves to drench dance floors in cosmic, hypnotic drama.
On the A-side, an Oberheim, the titular synth of "OB-8," takes the lead with a 4/4 kick. It's an excursion rich with quiet euphoria, never delivering an exciting build or cathartic drop. Nor should it. Lambkin assembles his lush motif with loon calls, filter sweeps, shimmery pads, light rhythmic accents and a subtly fluctuating bass tone that delivers no more than three notes, always on the upbeat. The nuances of "OB-8" are thrilling on their own.
"Torpedo" does bigger, bolder damage. Bulbous low-end and a carnal energy take charge here, and the music thrives on these base pleasures. As far as deep, big-room house goes, there's nothing out of the ordinary about its arrangement, so it's how Lambkin plays with the tropes that matters. He takes those overused, and often underdeveloped, ideas, inflates them to a gargantuan stature and gives it all a shot of adrenaline spiked with God knows what.