[6 August 2012]
PopMatters Associate Music Editor
Laid Back, the Danish synth-pop duo of Tim Stahl and John Guldberg, had a few European hits in the early 1980s. In North America, though, they are known almost solely for their 1983 synth-funk staple “White Horse”. Laid Back have been active over the ensuing decades, and Cosyland digs up some 1981 masters and gives them a modern once-over. The results are a half-dozen takes on the Laid Back sound, a mix of danceable, percolating sequencers, drum machines, and a dry vocal style that sounds like a combination of War’s “Low Rider”, Barry White, and Leonard Cohen. The title track is cool enough, but 2011 single “Cocaine Cool” is a “White Horse” rewrite, and nothing else really sticks. The bottom line is Laid Back made three songs that really matter, and none of them are here.