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Quartet of Happiness

The Monster Returns

(Creative Nation; US: 18 May 2010; UK: N/A)

A Young Victor Borge supposedly spent hours practicing piano, determined to become a serious concert pianist. However when asked on 60 Minutes if he regretted cashing it all in for becoming a world famous musical jokester, he swiftly said “no.” It seems that the Quartet of Happiness have made a similar bargain with the devil. They all have flawless chops, and they play beautifully. Even their compositions, during the more serious stretches of music, can be oddly soothing. In spite of all this they have chosen to be the PDQ Bachs of jazz, lampooning their own vocation and getting downright silly. The theatrics from their sophomore effort The Monster Returns? Saxophones trying to mimic cell phone dialing, an emotionless man singing in monotone, a mock reality show called “So You Think You Can Jazz?,” and advice not to park our cars in Newark, New Jersey or they will get stolen.

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