Review- “Once Smitten”- Lovely Killbots

reviewed by Michael

Put simply, robots have never been sexier or awesome-er.

Once Smitten is the upcoming release from Toronto electronic group Lovely Killbots. These eleven songs are infinitely danceable and catchy, among other things. The melodies are unforgettable and the lyrics will make you sing along before you know it.

The album title is also pretty appropriate- a few songs deal with a love that isn’t easily forgotten, or just a very passionate love. The most intriguing of these songs is “Time For Change.” From the lyrics, it’s very difficult to say if the song is serious or ironic in tone. It describes two people that were probably meant for each other. The chorus says “Everything she says is everything he needs/Everything he feels is everything she keeps/It’s the give and take that will make them real/It’s the way love is when it’s meant to be.”

But of course, not all the songs are just about love and heartbreak. Opening number “Must Be a Machine” could spawn its very own dance. With gritty electronic pulses backing the song, female vocalist Lauralee sings while male vocalist Ryan backs her up with “oh oh oh’s.” Lauralee sings in the chorus: “Step, step, step/Reset, reset, reset.” I can easily imagine some kind of line dance coming from those lyrics.

“It’s Fun to be Grumpy” stays true to its name and is definitely the most amusing of the album’s eleven songs. The beat here is more frantic than their other songs and even features an imitation of a grumpy, middle-aged man yelling “Hey, kids! Get off my lawn!”

“Boys on Buses” is a strangely down-tempo song and seems to be very introspective. Lauralee begins the song with “I could fall in love as frequently as I change my shirt.” It creates a very melancholic atmosphere which is a little strange but fitting. “Romangst” employs Woodhands-style wordplay for the song title and is sung in a staccato manner and uses blatant contradiction to illustrate how anyone in love feels. And romangst seems to be a pretty good word to describe it.

It is also necessary to mention that one of the songs is called “Performance Enhancing Hugs” which sounds like the greatest idea ever. According to the song lyrics, we need them because they “remind us that our egos are not worth much when they’re in the way of how we feel.”

If I haven’t made it clear already, this is a phenomenal piece of work. Almost every song will resonate with you after only one listen and it proves that, to quote Dan Mangan, robots need love too.

The album will be available May 6th.

Top Tracks: “Time For Change”; “It’s Fun to be Grumpy”; “Romangst”

Rating: Hunting Call (Excellent) +*swoop*

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