News: The National drop surprise album ‘Laugh Track’, unveil the single ‘Deep End (Paul’s In Pieces)’ and announce Australian tour.

Feature Photograph: Graham MacIndoe

It doesn’t seem that long ago that The National released ‘First Two Pages of Frankenstein’ through 4AD and Remote Control Records so it is quite a surprise to report they have just dropped a new album, ‘Laugh Track’, which is being described as a companion to ‘First Two Pages…’, having been recorded during the same sessions. To top this news off, the band has also announced an Australian tour, accompanied by support Fleet Foxes and Australia’s own (and Backseat Mafia favourite) Annie Hamilton..

First track off the album released is ‘Deep End (Paul’s In Pieces)’ – classic driving indie rock that seemingly floats in the ether with a rich production and the delicate lyrics that seem to reflect a middle aged reverie and angst:

I can’t follow what you’re saying
I don’t bother to try
Little bits of beautiful things you would say while I was fading off

I just cling to it. I just listen
I just cling to it. I just listen

As beautiful and enigmatic as ever.

‘Laugh Track’ features guest appearances by Phoebe Bridgers and Rosanne Cash, as well as the Bon Iver collaboration ‘Weird Goodbyes,’ which was released as a standalone track in August 2022.

Group member Aaron Dessner says of the album:

There was another side of the story in the songs left uncompleted, which ranged far beyond the gentleness of ‘Frankenstein’. The National has often bailed on grand ideas of making a rock record. It’s not because we don’t enjoy sitting in a room banging around ideas. It’s just that it wasn’t that productive, so we developed a fairly elaborate way of building songs in which [drummer] Bryan [Devendorf] had a very important but compartmentalized role. This time we had the desire to make something that was more alive so that Bryan’s playing would drive more.

‘Laugh Track’ is out now and available to download and stream here. Watch out for a review.

The band has also announced an Australian tour – details below:

Wednesday 28 February – Riverstage, Brisbane
Friday 1 March – Aware Super Theatre, Sydney
Tuesday 5 March – Sidney Myer Music Bowl, Melbourne
Saturday 9 March – Kings Park and Botanic Garden, Perth

Tickets on sale 12pm Friday, 22 September 

Live Nation pre-sale: Thu Sept 21, 1pm – Fri Sept 22, 11am
For complete tour and ticket information visit here.

Feature Photograph: Graham MacIndoe

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1 Comment

  1. Zachary Luke
    September 18, 2023

    Great music

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