Even though Ludo's theatrical strut "Love Me Dead" screams novelty hit, the Moog-buoyed, pop-rock quintet is no flash in the pan. The St. Louis band formed in early 2003, when ex-theater kid Andrew Volpe and metalhead/meditation enthusiast Tim Ferrell decided to hop in a van and play shows wherever they could. Ludo expanded to a quintet later that year, adding among others soft-spoken Spring native Matt Palermo on drums. They recorded a self-titled album and hit the road with one goal: "Basically we're just going to suck," said guitarist Ferrell, "until we don't anymore." Mission accomplished. This year, Ludo has appeared on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, toured with the Presidents of the United States of America and torn up the Warped Tour on the strength of major-label debut You're Awful, I Love You. Deceptively cheerful synths zip through the harmony-laden "Mutiny Below," while pop gem "In Space" uses outer-space lingo as the basis for its lovelorn lyrics. Smart and entertaining without being esoteric or jokey — think OK Go, Motion City Soundtrack or Weezer — Awful's macabre edge sets Ludo apart from any mainstreamo tag.
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