Sunday, June 24, 2007

Toadies - Hell Below/Stars Above

Hell Below/Stars Above

If you couldn't tell, I'm really strapped for time this week (work, work, and, uh, work!), so I'm going to be brief.

When I think of overlooked albums that should be reconsidered and granted near-classic status, I think of Miltown. Kidding! I really think of the Toadies's misunderstood and certainly underexposed sophomore release Hell Below/Stars Above

These Texas boys seemed happy enough to mine grunge after the fallout, forging it with the kind of post-hardcore that was beginning to really build up steam at the time on Rubberneck, the band's one moment o' fame (that moment being the charting single "Possum Kingdom"). But, nothing (even a six year wait!) could prepare the world for Hell Below/Stars Above, a slice of muscular, aggressive rock that was as catchy as all get-out and compelling at every turn. Not only was it incredibly well-crafted, but it burned with the kind of passion that you just don't expect from a band's second album.

Unfortunately, the mainstream never caught on (probably because it took six damn years), relegating this prime slice of 21st century rawk to blogs like this one that happily sing its praises. Worth a look, trust me.


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