Will their PR firm actually read the review before plugging it this time? My review of “We Did It For Years”, the Masters At Work follow-up to the underwhelming “Mattel”

A few weeks ago, Masters At Work released their first new single as a duo for a long, long time. The last one I could find was around 2006, so there was plenty of anticipation around it. I reviewed that single called “Mattel” here.

As you might have noticed, I wasn’t very nice about it. Given the sheer legacy of Masters At Work’s productions and remixes dating from the early 1990s, I was bitterly disappointed. “Mattel” had boring drums, a boring bassline and frankly, none of the soul, groove or sense of fun normally present in their work.

So, the new single. It’s called “We Did It For Years”, a choice of title name that leaves me scratching my head. Are they saying they have been doing it for years, or that they did do it for years? Is this their way of telling the world this reunion won’t last long?

Moving onto the single. The drums are a positive step up on “Mattel”, although it’s hard to ponder how they could have been worse. The programming is much more reflective of Vega and Gonzalez’s musical backgrounds – you can actually dance to this!

If this record has a bassline, I don’t hear it much. The drums are doing a lot of the work here. The vocal snippets are nicely placed and manage not to get too repetitive – an impressive achievement since there’s only a handful of them.

Everything else has its place. Is this right up there with what Masters At Work were putting out at their mid-1990s peak? Certainly not. Is it a million times better than the dreary “Mattel”? Absolutely yes.

Perhaps this is not the post-Covid cash-in that I feared it was…


If you’re wondering what on earth that headline is about, you’ll see the story here.