When you first experience Maven, it's like the cinematic cliché of two lovers running across a grassy field to embrace: It takes care of getting the right JARs for you, keeps test and build dependencies separate, and generates configuration artifacts for your favorite IDE, too. Even though it's XML, it's still a sweet five-minute user experience, but then you start stepping on the rakes in the grass.
I do like where Matthieu is headed with raven or Russel Winder is headed with gant, but I'd really like the two together: non-XML syntax, dependency management, fully-stocked and up-to-date repositories, well-supported by continuous integration systems, and works with everything that Ant works with. Maybe gant plus the Maven2 Ant tasks or Ivy is the most silver-ish bullet for the time being, but seeing as I don't need to shoot any werewolves, Maven fits the bill for the moment
(c) Paul Brown, Maven and Rakes in the Grass