CD Review – Hotel of the Laughing Tree: Terror and Everything After
The debut release from Long Island sextet Hotel of the Laughing Tree, Terror and Everything After, can be summarized into two words: “nailed it”. The high-energy, electric pop-rock has an edgy and upfront feel to it for the majority of the album. Despite boasting fourteen tracks, listener interest is easily maintained throughout the entirety of the record; it’s very dynamic, encompassing a mixture of rocking electric guitar riffs, hypnotic vocal harmonies, and singing piano arpeggios. Songs feel more linear than cyclical, starting in one place and ending up in another rather than repeating a verse/chorus/verse template. Nevertheless, Hotel of the Laughing Tree know how to write and place a hook that keeps the audience engaged in the music, as Terror and Everything After is full of them. That’s probably the biggest strength of this fantastic debut album – the ability to mix a motivated song structure that’s anything but stagnant with catchy hooks that draw the listener in.