Into Battle!

...with the art of Toyah. Yes, the flame-haired minx is back, making saucy records, playing Boadicea and hoping no-one thinks she has a fat bum. Robin Smith says perish the thought! 

Toyah wants to go on the warpath. She hopes to be playing the part of Boadicea, the gal who led a revolt against those naughty Romans about two thousand years ago. 

"Nothing has been confirmed yet and I haven't signed anything but it sounds like a very interesting part," she says. "It will be a musical film and some more stars will be taking part, but I can't say who they are." 

Ah well, perhaps we'll see Sting in one of those cute Roman tunics showing off his knobble knees, or Jim Kerr as a Roman emperor...on second thoughts, perhaps not. 

"Boadicea was a Queen who led a crusade against the Romans," continues Toyah. "Her people and the Romans had lived in peace until two Romans raped her daughters. 

"Boadicea was the Margaret Thatcher of her day. She was a very strong willed woman who could only see her own way and what was straight in front of her. She was very wilful and stubborn. For a time the rebellion was successful, but eventually it was crushed. 

"Nobody knows what happened to Boadicea. It's believed that she was reincarnated but the end of her life is quite a mystery. She didn't ride in a chariot with spikes on the wheels, that was something the Victorians made up to make her character more romantic." 

Toyah says that the women she's admired in history have been very strong willed. 

"I've always admired women with fire, aggression and spirit. Women who were prepared to stand up for what they believed in and really fight. I like brave women like Joan Of Arc. 

"I've never liked soft and coy women like Nell Gwynne who used soft charms to get around men, I don't find them interesting." 

Toyah's been carving up the charts again with "Don't Fall In Love" and an action-packed, adventure-filled album is on its way, so hang on to the edge of your seats. 

"I've spent about nine months getting out of my old record deal. I think my singles are going to last longer in the charts. I want a slow kind of build up now. I don't want to dash up to the top of the charts and then fall back swiftly." 

She seems to have changed a bit as well, opting for a cooler, more subtle approach. 

"I don't dye my hair that much anymore. I did all that five years ago, it's time for a change. But when I hit the stage I'm still going to bite." 

Toyah might not have been around for a little while in the charts, but she's been keeping busy romping around nude in 'The Ebony Tower' with Sir Laurence Olivier (on the box not long ago) and she's been writing a whole case full of new songs. 

"I'm sure Fiesta or some other magazine is going to get hold of some of those shots from 'The Ebony Tower' and use them but there will be nothing I can do. I hope people judged the scene within the context of the programme. The director even stripped off to make us feel more comfortable.

"I hope people weren't looking at me just as voyeurs thinking 'she's got a fat bum and short legs'. I'm going to America soon and I'm sure I'm going to receive a lot of publicity for appearing nude, but I hope it's not over emphasised. 

"I think you can appear nude in something and still be a feminist. I've got nothing against Samantha Fox, except I think she's a bit young to be doing what she does." 

Toyah's album will be aptly called 'Minx' and she says it's going to be pretty darn racy stuff. 

"I wanted to call it 'Requiem' or something equally as mysterious but one day I had a row with my producer in the studio and he said 'you...you minx!' We all thought that 'minx' would be a great title for the album and the name stuck. 

"The album is very commercial but parts of it are very sexually explicit. It won't get banned though, because of the way I've phrased the material. 

"There's one track called 'Terrorist Of Love'. It's about how we all worship the gun and how we are all really hunters, but it's obvious that the gun becomes a phallic symbol. 

"Last year I wrote 48 songs. I usually write songs because I have to, but this time the ideas just flowed and flowed." 

Yes, Toyah doesn't lounge around at home watching television all night. One of the floors in her house has been converted into a gym and she works out every evening. She's even put mirrors on the ceiling so she can watch herself sweat. After that it's off to the library and study for a spot of writing. 

Toyah says that the current single is based on old memories, when she was a podgy little schoolgirl desperate for a spot of romance. 

"It's about jealousy. You're watching a situation between a boy and girl or a man and a woman and don't want it to happen. I was always a gooseberry, I was always getting left out of things and getting jealous." 

Apart from her album, Toyah's been doing plenty of other things. She's teamed up with Genesis keyboard player Tony Banks to work on music for a sci-fi epic involving lots of nasty robots and there's been talk of her playing Tinkerbell in a production of 'Peter Pan' starring Sting. Her main priority has been songwriting though. 

"I love writing songs for men," she says. "I think I'm able to write songs which bring out female sexuality, which is something men have great difficulty doing properly. 

"I want to write or create something which is really important. I haven't fulfilled myself by a long way yet. I really want to do something which will go down in history as being something great. 

"I'm not going to have children until I'm 40. If I had children now they would interfere with my career. I couldn't write and sing and look after a child properly. It sounds ruthless but that's the way it has to be."

Record Mirror, May 1985