Tom Lockett’s dark psychedellic Laughing Eyes shows new side to Stoke-on-Trent singer

Following up on his January release, Fly With Me, Stoke-on-Trent musician Tom Lockett further explores his sonic evolution with the arrival of his latest single, Laughing Eyes. The singer-songwriter released his debut single Feeling Bad back in 2016, which received rave reviews from the likes of Louder Than War and Shindig! Magazine, followed by his stripped back folk inspired EP, If A Heavy Rain Should Fall. 

Fast forward five years, and now with a full backing band, Tom has shed his folkie routes, spruced up, and embraced a fresh new sound.

With Laughing Eyes – his sixth release on his own Magic Cactus Records –  Lockett delves into dark psychedelic territories laced with indie rock sensibilities. The result is a haunting ballad that echoes a range of popular yet incredibly different artists, from the kaleidoscopic soundscapes of Blossoms to the country twang of Two Fingers era Jake Bugg. But what’s most striking is how I can almost envisage Miles Kane belting out the chorus of this track on stage. This sort of sonic shapeshifting and seamless fusion is mesmerising to listen to, and despite being able to draw loose comparisons, Lockett’s unique voice and lyrical depth carve out a distinct identity.

With swirling strings, overdriven guitars, and a hypnotic percussive bridge, the instrumentation is rich, full and balanced, steeped in atmospheric textures and ethereal effects that are engaging and immersive. Combined with his haunting vocals and mournful lyrics about loss, heartache, and addiction, Laughing Eyes shows a new side to the Stoke-on-Trent born artist, both musically and lyrically.

Tom Lockett’s latest offering may be a bold departure from his folk roots, but it’s one that pays off and proves you can and should push boundaries and continue to evolve in your artistry rather than sticking to a signature sound. Laughing Eyes is a masterclass in experimentation and serves as a testament to Lockett’s artistic reinvention, showcasing a remarkable growth in both style and substance. 

Released April 19, you can listen to Laughing Eyes here:

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