Happy Apple, The Peace Between Our Companies

Dylan Hicks

By Dylan Hicks

on 04.22.11 in Reviews

Happy Apple drummer Dave King is better known for his work in the Bad Plus, the justifiably hyped trio that mixes in Aphex Twin and Abba covers with its smart originals. The Bad Plus actually modeled itself on the Minneapolis-based Happy Apple, another witty, rock-friendly, leaderless three-piece that discovered a group sound through frequent touring. This, its sixth album, is stocked with strange, entertaining tunes, most of which get under your skin if you give them time.

The model for the Bad Plus, featuring the same brilliant drummer.

King plays with boyish enthusiasm and mannish confidence, saxophonist Michael Lewis is convincing whether squawking or wooing, and bassist Erik Fratzke, a metalhead by day (well, by other nights), dials up tone fatter than Dom DeLuise and has even more robust technique, though he rarely shows it off to excess.