Ledge album cover

Laughing Hands


There’s still something elusive and secretive about Melbourne quartet Laughing Hands. Extant from 1979 to 1982, they whittled away at a blurred, starkly filmic vision of experimental music, and on their self-released debut album, 1980’s Ledge, murky tonalities slowly gather around ponderous piano patterns and abraded waves of synth and guitar clutter. There’s some similarity to what was happening in ‘industrial’ music elsewhere in the world, but Laughing Hands felt distinct from that, somehow: too much light and shade. If anything, they were closer to fearless explorers like This Heat, or on tracks like “No Titles”, the deep pulsations of early Cluster.

Jon Dale

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