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Senor Happy
IíM SORRY
(Q Division)

The title of this one is a joking apology to fans for the six years itís taken this Boston outfit to follow up their debut album. But with the possible exception of dark personal secrets, Senor Happy have nothing to be sorry for. Their charismatic blend of hooks, harmony and unison vocals, and guitars that chime and growl on command raises them well above the local pop pack and gives them a gleeful, propulsive sound even when the stories they spin have small, dour edges. Tunes like "Got You" come on heavy thanks to an extra helping of dirty six-string but still leave a sweet ring in the ears. Left-field solos like the whinnying guitar break in "Someone Invaded Me" underscore the acidic experiences in many of songwriter/frontman Derek Schancheís lyrics. Whatís best about the group, however, is their overall sound: an upbeat veneer that at times echoes the textural depth and sheen of the best Britpop of the alternative-rock era teamed with a kind of raw, messy rock-and-roll energy thatís distinctly American. Tune for tune, itís a winning approach.

BY TED DROZDOWSKI


Issue Date: August 6 - 12, 2004
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