Toyah's last London gig for this year (!) was
nothing short of brilliant.....a speedy progression from earlier gigs,
finds the band niftier than ever, with Toyah sporting her amazing bondage
space cadet look, coupled with her incredible shrinking act (at the rate
she's shedding weight there soon won't be a Toyah!).
In three months with only the mammaries...er,
the memories to keep our brains alive, Toyah have perfected their music
so that it stands apart from most groups. SPECIAL, in other words.
New songs as good as the standards of today were
previewed, including amongst them "Insects" on which her imagination ran
riot. And the next single "Tribal Look" which at times allowed the bass
and drums to find prominence with frantic parts of the Aztec disco shuffle.
They began mysteriously early, and somehow the
eternally acrobatic Miss Willcox kept up the furious pace where more experienced
athletes would have wilted. Musically they offer you something different
to other bands, a sense of purpose for one thing, doing it because they
enjoy it. The traditional striving for commercial success comes low on
the list. The music seeps into your senses and stays there, whilst the
image takes some beating.
The giant bassist who we shall call Plug, leaps
around, occasionally helping Toyah on her way with a friendly boot. The
drummer, who is the undisputed musical star of the show, pushes through
the intensely rhythmic beat that pervades all of the tunes. Joel, ace guitarist,
rips out the noise, eyeing his fiancee nervously fearing the impending
assault.....and the keyboardman stands solemn but safe behind his machine
concocting eerie contributions. And then the lady of the night, whether
it's dousing her head in drink, swapping tongue recollections with a girl
down front or attempting to eat her way through the floor. Toyah moves
on, her body in flames, she exhibits her extraordinary facial contortions
every few seconds. Suffice to say I find it intoxicating.
Melody Maker 1979