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Laughing Stock — Songs for the Future
(Apollon Records ARP070, 2023, CD / LP / DL)

by Henry Schneider, Published 2023-05-02

Songs for the Future Cover art

Norway’s art-rockers Laughing Stock have taken their music in a different direction with their new album Songs for the Future. What they’ve done for their fifth album is reach back and take inspiration from the music they enjoyed in their youth, the more eclectic and playful music of the 80s. They composed twelve songs imbued with the joy and excitement of music you discover when you are young and, in some ways, shape your future, hence the album title. The spirit of XTC permeates the album, especially with Colin Moulding guesting, along with Colin Bass (Camel) and Billy Sherwood (Yes). The songs range from upbeat fun music through the downright funky to the dreamy and introspective, but never losing that fundamental joy of music. And there is one of those oddities you periodically encounter, a long track that contains a song that is over half way through followed by a minute of silence and then an entirely different and uncredited songs, “It Is Time.” Songs for the Future is a mix of pop New Wave and Progressive Rock songs that are all good, nothing stands out above the rest to me. So part tribute to the past and part refinement and further evolution of the Laughing Stock sound, Songs of the Future could be their best album to date.

Filed under: New releases, 2023 releases

Related artist(s): Billy Sherwood, Colin Bass (Sabah Habas Mustapha), Laughing Stock

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