The follow-up to the successful Motown Chartbusters, Vol. 1, Volume 2 seems to be a cash-in on a winning formula. Very few tracks from this collection would make it onto a Motown greatest-hits collection. Still, there is great joy to find on this album. Of particular note are Smokey Robinson's "I Second That Emotion" (later a hit for Diana Ross & the Supremes with the Temptations) and Gladys Knight's blueprint of Norman Whitfield's classic "I Heard It Through the Grapevine." Listeners will be surprised by the latter of these originals -- Knight's version is closer to Aretha Franklin's "Respect" than Marvin Gaye's subsequent laid-back reading. One could go as far to say that it sounds like a completely different song! Also of interest on this collection is R. Dean Taylor's "I Gotta See Jane." Taylor was the first white act to appear on Motown, releasing his material via the company's Rare Earth subsidiary. Although the album conveys the spirit and enthusiasm of Motown, few will find this collection as enjoyable as others in the series such as Volume 1 and Volume 3, which are littered with material that have become classics. Only more serious soul fans should tune in.
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AllMusic Review by Rob Flanagan