Happy Daggers – Dirty Disco EP Review

By September 27, 2014

Music. Leeds.


Happy Daggers are the latest band to emerge from Leeds, having both a confident and powerful stage presence, relentlessly gigging at all the local venues and growing from strength to strength with each live performance. They are about to release their much anticipated EP Dirty Disco which comes out on the 29th September, 2014. Dirty Disco includes five innovative new songs that include the titles: The Witching Hour, Salem, Pitch Black, Silvio, and Turning Away, released on new label Phat Mannequin Records.

Happy Daggers consists of four Leeds locals; Sinclair Belle (Guitar& Vocals), Danny Martin (Guitar), Jon Causley (Bass), Tommi Stubbs (Drums). They describe their music genre as ‘Indie Rock ‘n’ Disco Soul’ which, at first glance, might seem like an odd combination of music – they could be one of the first bands seen to describe their sound as such an eclectic mix. But this mix of genres sums up exactly what they embody and present. They have the harmonies of soul, the invigorating beat of disco whilst incorporating the cool lyrics, look and feel of an indie rock band.


Profile pic


I would say that Happy Daggers inhabit an abundance of other relative musical categories that clearly inspire their vibe, style and sound. Their new video for Turning Away has both an Indie Rock and a kind of Ska feel to it where the band’s unique style of eclectic musical hybrid is summed up. It features a social-realism-type film location presenting a man dancing alone in what seems to be an abandoned estate, surrounded by odds and ends. The video has an incredibly positive feel: full of vibrant energy from both the music and the movement. Their fresh new sound is instantly recognisable and infectious – you’ll be singing the songs all day. They like to creep up on you when you least expect it. Happy Daggers present a burst of positive energy and eclectic vibes with a hint of Yorkshire reality, bubbling over a cauldron of soul.

Their success doesn’t end with their new EP: Happy Daggers have had a fantastic response at both Beacons Festival and Bingley Music Live this year which has helped them staggeringly by boosting their profile and projecting them to a wider audience. It is clear to see from their Facebook page that their fan base is growing by the day. The band have also found fame by having their song Heartstrings played as part of a episode on the popular Channel 4 soap, Hollyoaks.

Pitch Black and Salem are the two tracks that stood out the most for me throughout this EP. It was extremely hard to pick just two to narrow it down to, as the EP flows together perfectly well as a whole but these two songs have incredible beats and catchy choruses. Both incredibly addictive they are the highlight of any of their live gigs. These two songs will be the ones to listen out for as you will be singing them again and again. The choruses will creep up on you when you least expect it… as I experienced myself humming them numerous times while reviewing this EP. Salem is an uplifting and upbeat song that has sensational harmonies, some of which reminded me of very soulful Bee Gee-esque falsetto voice from Sinclair.

The Happy Daggers lads ooze soul and scream funk, their harmonies reminiscent of 70’s soul and funk bands. They have electric filler echoing in the background similar to video game soundtracks of the past. They have created instant classics that will linger in your consciousness for days.

The band have a sound which you can immediately connect to and somehow believe that you’ve heard them somewhere before. Their sound and style can be described as something similar to Ed Sheeran’s latest song – Sing. They mix old fashioned funk with a contemporary feel.

Happy Daggers are certainly the band to watch out for this year, and they are well worth going to see. The lads’ next gig will be at the newly renamed Leeds Becket University on the date of the EP release 29th September.

Holly Ridge


Dirty Disco will be available on Phat Mannequin Records on Monday 29th September to download digitally and will be available to buy from selected local stores.




Filed under: Music