2-91628 Laughter & Lust
Produced by Joe Jackson and Ed Roynesdal
Released on April 30, 1991
UK CHART POSITION #41 . . . US CHART POSITION #116
Find it at GEMM
2-91628 cover
[high resolution scan]
 

M aybe a new label (Virgin) occasioned JJ to listen to his old records again. And perhaps the powers that pay nudged ever so gently that an album of pop music like Look Sharp or Night And Day would be just swell, thank you. Whatever the reason, Laughter & Lust became Jackson’s first (and last) pop album for some time. As with other beloved pop artists (Elvis Costello, Paul McCartney), the return to his old haunts was heralded as his best album since (most people fill in the blank with Body And Soul). And as in the case of Costello and Graham Parker, listeners have their monkey’s paw moment in realizing that you can only be an angry young man once in your life. Yet it’s a slight discomfort, one easily ameliorated by the pleasure of hearing “Hit Single,” “Stranger Than Fiction,” “The Other Me” and “Jamie G.” In comparing this to his earlier work, I’m most reminded of I’m The Man. “Obvious Song” aligns well with “On Your Radio,” “Hit Single” is as irresistible as “I’m The Man,” “Stranger Than Fiction” as sweetly contrived as “Kinda Kute.” However, Laughter & Lust is audibly the product of the post-Night Jackson; bongos and Latin elements abound. The packaging seems to promise a concept, but one doesn’t emerge. These are isolated love stories mostly, ruminations of a middle-aged man being dragged through the briars of romancing. If you enjoyed the return-to-form records Brutal Youth and Flaming Pie, Laughter & Lust is a must also. It answers the question of whether Jackson could make another good pop record and leaves unanswered whether he really wanted to.

2-91628 back sleeve
2-91628 back sleeve

TRACK LISTING

  1. OBVIOUS SONG    4:11
  2. GOIN' DOWNTOWN    (Joe Jackson/Drew Barfield)    3:05
  3. STRANGER THAN FICTION    3:40
  4. OH WELL    (Peter Green)    2:29
  5. JAMIE G.    2:04
  6. HIT SINGLE    3:37
  7. IT'S ALL TOO MUCH    4:22
  8. WHEN YOU'RE NOT AROUND    4:01
  9. THE OTHER ME    4:11
  10. TRYING TO CRY    6:30
  11. MY HOUSE    4:26
  12. THE OLD SONGS    3:32
  13. DROWNING    5:09

    All songs written by Joe Jackson unless noted

CREDITS

JOE JACKSON -- vocals and keyboards
JOY ASKEW -- vocals, keyboards
SUE HADJOPOLOUS -- percussion, drums
DAN HICKEY -- drums
GRAHAM MABY -- bass, vocals
TOM TEELEY -- guitar, vocals
Tony Aiello -- saxophones
Charles McCracken -- cello
Michael Morreale -- trumpet
Annie Whitehead -- trombone
Larry Alexander -- engineer
Patrik Andersson -- photography
Melanie Nissen -- art direction
Calef Brown -- lettering
Inge Schaap -- design
Kelle Kutsugeras -- styling
Bobbi Brown -- make-up

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
UK April 1991 Virgin LP/CS/CD VUSLP/MC/CDVUS-34 lyric sleeve
UK 1991 Virgin CDLE CDVUS-34LE limited edition
US April 30, 1991 Virgin CD/CS 91628 lyric sleeve
JPN 1991 Virgin CD VJCP-28034  

 

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