- Unsurprisingly for a man with a robot complex, Marcus Lambkin harbours something of a fetish for bleeps. The 8-bit sound that has pervaded much of his work to date betrays a penchant for brazen nostalgia and diehard homage that can be at times invitingly celebratory, and at others frustratingly unimaginative. One such example of the former was last year's superlative Simple Things, whose irreverently frenzied vocals and frolicsome piano breakdown seemed to encapsulate the recent revival of older Chicago sounds in charming and charismatic fashion. Unfortunately this latest effort, in an apparent nod to Northern England's early '90s house scene, veers a little too closely towards the latter.
It all looks good on paper: a fourth EP from a producer who's recently proven his mettle on one of the last decade's most revered labels with a guest vocal spot from one-half of current darlings House of House. Sadly these boxes are left unchecked by a signature sound that is becoming increasingly worn, a beat that is disablingly minimal and a general hodgepodge of stylistic cross-references that lacks cohesion. The quintessentially old-school chords that clang midway through "I Got A Feeling," for instance, are so cynically predictable that any real euphoric punch is conspicuously absent; and alongside Saheer Umar's crooned postulation that "love is a drug" it all resounds a tad too familiarly.
B-Side "Norfolfk Nights" offers more in the way of rhythmic interest and succeeds in creating an altogether broodier atmosphere, however an anticipated climax again fails to materialise leaving your hands halfway between your pockets and the air. It's not Shit, rather a case of Disappointing Robot.
A I Got a Feeling
B Norfolk Nights