A horrible hack


The Dark Art Of Happiness

Year Released: 2006
Format: CD
Label: Double Dragon
Reviewed by Alex Deller on Jun 13, 2007
Ludes. From the name to the sound itís all so gosh-darn contemporary that you canít help but raise a cynical eyebrow. A dash of Bloc party here, a blob of Kaiser Chiefs there and all the requisite nods to a bygone era sure to have the Zane Lowes of this world foaming at the mouth like a pack of simpering jackals. Ludesí loose claim to rock is mingled with syncopated funk and limp cod-reggae before being swaddled in a sheen of glossy pop and having a big smarmy smirk parked across its airbrushed chops. For what it is, you canít fault it Ė slick, professional and efficiently executed. The Dark Art of Happiness is without a doubt perfectly geared towards sweaty, beer-slopping student-union moshpits and afternoon Virgin Megastore showcases in middling British cities. And for these very reasons I loathe them Ė because when you start commending commercial nous and savvy professionalism over spirit itself you may as well just start hammering a crude wooden stake through musicís heart and be done with it.

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