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 Toadstool - The Visitors EP (2012) Review

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Reign In Metal
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Zodiac : Aries Metal Reputation : 88
Join date : 2012-01-05
Location : Vacationing in Hell

PostToadstool - The Visitors EP (2012) Review

Toadstool - The Visitors EP (2012)
Self-Released -- Running Time 15:30

Here we have the second Toadstool EP 'The Visitors', which was released at the tail end of 2012. It features the same four piece lineup as on the debut Alex Macaskill (vocals and bass), Jack Porteous (rhythm guitar), Nick Ingram (lead guitar) and Dave Meadows (drums) and even though there are a few small changes musically it essentially carries on from where the first EP left off.

All of those great Rush, T-Rex and Led Zep influences that were present are still there, thanks mainly to an excellent vocal performance from Macaskill, but this time there are some slightly more modern influences seeping through into the songwriting and the songs themselves are not quite as immediate, taking a few more spins to appreciate fully. That doesn't mean they are worse though, just that the melodies are a little more hidden and take time to emerge. I think there are two reasons for this, Firstly, even though all four songs are catchy, there is some further experimentation within the arrangements and I would expect that two years on from the debut. Secondly, and I hope I don't upset the guys by saying this, but I'm not sure the production is as good this time around. It's a little more 'muddy' and the drums seem somewhat lost in a couple of the tracks. I thought it was just me at first but when I went back and played the first CD to check it was definitely clearer and more defined!

Regardless of that fact Toadstool have released an excellent follow up and the energy and ambition is still there in spades. Once the melodies and arrangements kicked in, especially on the aptly titled 'Something To Prove' and 'Last Night On Earth', I was tapping away on my desk with a big smile on my face. They are a classic rock band, but not in the same way as many of the revival classic rock acts around at the moment. It's difficult to put my finger on it. Perhaps it's the uniqueness of the vocals, there just seems to be that little something extra that separates them from the majority and that can only be a good thing as far as I'm concerned! I also want to say that I really like the cover art which reminds a little of the final scene in Lars von Trier's 'Antichrist' or UK ghost series 'The Fades'. That's my love of horror creeping into a review yet again!

As I stated in my other review Toadstool are now a three piece with Alex and Nick joined by new drummer Scott McParland and they played an extremely good set at the recent Rock & Metal Circus Festival. With more live dates just announced I'm aiming to catch them again before the end of the year and they absolutely deserve to be signed by a good independent label to give their debut album a decent push when it is released!

Review written for Brutiful Entertainment by Rick Tilley

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