The National release surprise album Laugh Track

The band’s second album of 2023 includes features from Phoebe Bridgers and Bon Iver.

September 18, 2023
The National release surprise album <I>Laugh Track</i> Graham MacIndoe

The National have released a new album. Laugh Track is the band's second album of 2023, after April's First Two Pages of Frankenstein, and features guest appearances from Phoebe Bridgers and Rosanne Cash, plus “Weird Goodbyes” with Bon Iver.


In addition to the album, The National have added multiple dates to their upcoming fall U.S. tour, which will get underway November 10 in San Francisco. Find a full list of tour dates below.

News of Laugh Track was first announced by the band on Saturday at their Homecoming festival. The band headlined the event, which took place in Cincinnati, Ohio and featured appearances from Patti Smith, Pavement, Arooj Aftab, and Weyes Blood.


According to press materials, Laugh Track was honed on tour throughout the past year and recorded at producer Tucker Martine’s Portland studio, Flora Recording, & Playback. Album closer “Smoke Detector” was recorded in June during a soundcheck for their show in Vancouver.

Speaking about the more traditional rock sound of the album, producer and band member Aron Dessner said in a statement that drummer Bryan Devendorf was key to the sound of this album.

“It’s not because we don’t enjoy sitting in a room banging around ideas," Dessner said. "It’s just that it wasn’t that productive, so we developed a fairly elaborate way of building songs in which Bryan 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."


The National 2023 tour dates

September 21 – Dublin, IRE – 3 Arena *
September 23 – Leeds, UK – First Direct Arena *
September 24 – Glasgow, UK – OVO Hydro Arena *
September 26 – London, UK – Alexandra Palace *
September 27 – London, UK – Alexandra Palace *
September 29 – Amsterdam, NL – Ziggo Dome ^
September 30 – Berlin, DE – Max-Schmeling-Halle ^
October 1 – Munich, DE – Zenith ^
October 4 – Madrid, ES – WiZink Center ^
October 5 – Porto, PT – Super Bock Arena ^
October 6 – Lisbon, PT – Campo Pequeno ^
October 7 – Lisbon, PT – Campo Pequeno ^
November 10 – San Francisco, CA – Bill Graham Civic Auditorium %
November 11 – San Diego, CA – Cal Coast Credit Union Open Air Theatre %
November 13 – Phoenix, AZ – Arizona Financial Theatre %
November 14 – Albuquerque, NM – Kiva Auditorium %
November 16 – Tulsa, OK – Tulsa Theater %
November 17 – Austin, TX – Moody Center %
November 18 – Houston, TX – Lawn at White Oak %
November 19 – Irving, TX – The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory %

*Soccer Mommy
^ Bartees Strange
% Hand Habits

The National release surprise album Laugh Track