Gerald Collier's solo debut, I Had to Laugh Like Hell, positions him in the mode of a folky alt-country singer/songwriter, a far cry from his days with the Best Kissers in the World. The production is spare and stark, emphasizing Collier's wispy, frail-sounding voice and acoustic guitar, with occasional pedal steel or violin backing. Lyrically, Collier dwells largely on failed relationships, musing about his own shortcomings; a few tracks also offer confessional thoughts on excessive drinking and religion. Overall, I Had to Laugh Like Hell's mood is perfect for self-doubting, late-night loneliness.
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AllMusic Review by Steve Huey