Listen: Laughed The Boy break the mould

Indie-rock outfit expands sound on latest single.


Bell Rock is the second single from Ontaria, Canada-based indie outfit Laughed the Boy, whose debut full-length album Here is Fine is due to drop later this month. The release follows on from the band’s well-received first offering Indifferent, which introduced the band to the world at the back end of 2016.

Whereas its predecessor was an immediate, major-key rocker – perfectly enjoyable if rather by-the-numbers – however, Bell Rock sees the two-piece expand their sound and move into altogether more intriguing, haunting territory.

Dreamy and wistful, the song is anchored by ethereal lead lines and a backing rhythm of lazy, rolling bass and weary acoustic strumming that manages to sound both light and airy and claustrophobic. What’s most rewarding about the track, though, is that as it moves along at its decidedly unhurried tempo, its delicate melodies tend to slowly reveal themselves as opposed to jump straight out at you – just like a friendly ghost, if you’re in the mood for a cringe-worthy simile – which in turn makes the regret and nostalgia-filled lyrics all the more affecting.

Just when you’ve settled in to its hazy groove, the song takes a left turn and enters a carnival-esque, minor-key breakdown before returning back to familiar territory, making the track seem a lot longer and more of a journey than its three-and-a-half minute-running time might suggest.

Sitting somewhere between Mac DeMarco and Humbug-era Arctic Monkeys, Bell Rock is the sound of Laughed the Boy breaking out of the straight-ahead indie mould and starting to carve an interesting niche for themselves – and with their debut album just around the corner, hopefully this is just one of many gems to come from this exciting new band.

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