The Hardest Way to Make an Easy Living is the third album by The Streets, released on 10 April 2006 in the United Kingdom and 25 April 2006 in North America. It is also the shortest The Streets album released so far, with a running time of just 37 minutes and 12 seconds. The Mitchell Brothers and Ted Mayhem, two of Skinner's protégés, make guest appearances on the album.
Critical response for the album was generally positive, scoring 72/100 on Metacritic. However, this score is lower than his previous two albums, scoring 90/100 and 91/100 respectively. In a mixed review, Prefix Magazine said "With about half the tracks on this record falling short, Skinner would seem to be teetering on the edge of irrelevance. But even the failed tracks here sound interesting, and if he's lost his way somewhat thematically, it's all in the name of searching for his new voice." In a much more positive review, The Village Voice Consumer Guide said "His comic timing and mixture of slangs--not to mention his musical conception... are all so much more fully developed that he's actually made a record that's fun to play in the background." Spin named Skinner "the perfect poet for this snooze of a topic." In a negative review, Stylus Magazine described the album as "an exercise in empty nothingness. But it’s not Bacchanalian coked-out excess nothingness, it's the joyless hollow-eyed actions of a man who is waiting for the next fix and doesn't care what bullshit has to come out of his lips in order to get paid."