April 04, 2005 at 04:00 AM EDT

Warren Fischer and Casey Spooner’s ironic dance music — which they presented as performance art — made them the coolest of the cool kids when the duo debuted with #1 in 2003. Odyssey, their sophomore effort, boasts state-of-the-art club beats and collaborators who have grad-school cachet (it includes lyrics by David Byrne and the late Susan Sontag). What it doesn’t have is much in the way of songs, or sincerity: Every wistful murmur, chilly flourish of strings, and new-wavy synthesizer burble seems to have quotation marks around it.

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