Roberts & Lord - Covers EP

Roberts & Lord Covers cover

"This sounds like Michael Jackson but it’s not Michael Jackson" is pretty high praise from my three year old; she could not avoid dancing, pizza in hand, as we listened to this during lunch. Roberts & Lord, if you haven’t heard, are pop-future deconstructionist Rafter Roberts and former Simian/current Simian Mobile Disco electro-disco crooner Simon Lord. They conducted things for their debut album Postal Service-style, and they have continued their collaboration with this collection of covers. The collection begins with an exceptionally funky Marvin Gaye song, featureing a drop-it-like-it’s-hot beat and, in the second half, snoopy vocal sample. The proceedings continue with a monstrous, beat-heavy cover of the Beatles, appropriate considering the well-traveled quote calling Lord’s previous band Simian “the Beatles produced by the Neptunes”. The last two tracks are of a pair: both feature Rafter’s blown-out drums, shambling, cliché-free production, neo-soul crooning, and future-funk canon songs. It wouldn’t surprise me if Lord led the selection of the tracks on this EP—all four lean towards psychedelic soul with vocals that suit his singing style. Rafter comes in and does his best to stomp all over the sensitivity with sledgehammer drums and relatively minimal melodies. It’s almost a struggle between the two—Simon Lord setting his soul free while Rafter Roberts tries to beat it back into submission—and I think it makes it a much more entertaining album than four straight-up covers would have been.