A belated review of Shit Robot‘s second album is only timely now because he just reappeared with his third, so this is a good opportunity to reappraise We Got a Love. When I first heard it, I was underwhelmed after the charming sound of From the Cradle to the Rave (2010), so let’s see if that’s still true.
It opens with a nice plodding dance piece, The Secret. Shit Robot always builds his music slowly, and this one builds into a pleasant disco track after a few minutes. And this is, as it turns out, the way things are on this release. Where the previous one would suddenly surprise you with Take ‘Em Up or Answering Machine, this one plods along nicely, but never really charms you.
It doesn’t help that a couple of the tracks are almost identically named. Do That Dance is great, and honestly not too far from the standard of the first album; Do It (Right) is perhaps a little further away.
This isn’t a particularly easy album to review, all told – and not because there’s anything particularly wrong with it. Quite the opposite, in fact – it washes across your ears entirely pleasantly, but it doesn’t really feel like a worthy follow-up to From the Cradle to the Rave.
Feels Real is a nice disco piece, but ultimately it’s a little forgettable again, but then we get Space Race, originally released as a b-side a couple of years earlier. Ironically, although perhaps not too surprisingly, it’s better than anything else on here.
Space Race is an instrumental piece, with darker electronica undertones at times. It’s fairly simple, and fits nicely on here, but it seems to stand out somehow just by virtue of being a little bit catchier than most of its neighbours.
After that, things seem a little more positive – Feels Like starts off nicely, although after a minute or so it builds into another slightly dull electro-disco piece. Title track We Got a Love is fairly anonymous too, another one with a disco “vibe” and a waily vocal from Reggie Watts.
Finally, we get a particularly long and – at least initially – fairly dull instrumental titled Tempest, and the second album is over. All in all, I can’t help but see We Got a Love as something of a disappointment. Maybe the collaborators weren’t quite right this time around, maybe it’s another case of a “difficult second album,” or maybe a spark was missing. Whatever the reason, hopefully it’s come back for the third album.
You can still find We Got a Love from major retailers.