The original Labour of Love was a fantastic album, a work of true enthusiasm, with a noticeable reverence for the songs that UB40 were re-recording. It was, truly and obviously, a labour of love for them.
Volume II did not succeed quite as well, but still had enough fire and quite a few very good tracks to make it a great album, too.
Now here we are at Volume III, and it appears to me that UB40 are just trying to milk their most successful formula for all that it's worth. The enthusiasm is gone. The band is just going through the motions. And if you have ever heard Neil Diamond's version of "Holly Holy" on Hot August Night I, you can instantly tell the lack of intensity and feeling in UB40's version.
And what's with this Neil Diamond fixation, anyway? I mean, I like Neil (at least, old '60s and early '70s Neil), but come on! Hey guys, for Labour of Love IV, how about doing a reggae-fied version of "You're So Sweet, Horseflies Keep Hangin' 'Round Your Face," and then calling it a day?