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Album Review :: toyGuitar :: In This Mess

Written by: Andrea Janov, CC2K Music Editor

toyGuitar :: In This Mess :: Fat Wreck Chords


As soon as I hit play on In This Mess, I felt like I was sucked back in time. toyGuitar is a fantastic throw back to the raw sound of the 1970s where there was that fine line between glam and punk. The music metallic rock and roll, the vocals are smooth, and the attitude is just oozing out of every track. There electric sound mixed with the snotty attitude is a cross between David Bowie and MC5 and The New York Dolls.



I lost count of how many times I listened to this album, trying to wrap words around how my body was reacting to each song. Finally I realized that that is what this album is about, it is visceral, it is reactive, it is all about the sound and all about how your body responds to it.


The first track, Hyenas, is your baptism by fire, it is hooky and catchy, but the vocals are super seductive. The energy is high and you want to dance and thrash along. You can’t help it, you are hooked. When It Was Over, is even more infectious, (catchy sounds like too poppy a word, but there is no way that you are getting these hooks out of your head) if you weren’t moving already you will be now. Is It True has a sweet surf-y vibe to it, yet never losing the attitude and distortion. In This Mess is my favorite track, the vocals are alluring, yet a bit menacing, I would follow them into their underworld to see what they were offering me.


Static Attraction is a super cool pairing of the early NYC sound that I referenced earlier and this beach-y laidback vibe that they have in some of their tracks. Let’s Talk in the Shower is pure frantic energy while Roller Coasters is mellow and almost relaxing.  


I think that their pairing of alluring vocals and distorted music is what makes their sound so raw and intriguing, You can’t put your finger on their style or their sound because they are consistently playing with elements that are diametrically at odds with one another – yet are creating MAGIC as they ware paired together on this album. This is the kind of album where I imagine the perfect live show taking place in a dark club with the walls and fan dripping with sweat by the end of the set.