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Soundi (1981): Toyah: Small Girl, Big Ideas

July 1st, 2013

soundi13aA fantastic retro, and quite lengthy, Toyah interview from Finnish magazine SOUNDI.

A huge thanks to Lärwi. of The Toyah Willcox Interview Archive, for the scans and translation.

Interview by Dougie Gordon, published in June 1981.

The door opens. A short, 145 cm tall figure stands in front of me. She’s wearing a blue and grey tunic which has gold embroidery on it. The fiery red hair looks a like a burning bush against the backdrop of the outfit. The figure moves forwards like a Samurai warrior poised for an attack but you can see a smile on her face which you can not resist. She’s Toyah Willcox, England’s Jeanne d’Arc of latter times.

soundi13gHer moves are a part of her carefully calculated image. She’s has consciously made herself into a mystery which invites the audience to explore her world further. But you can’t fit all of the pieces together – it’s not easy to find the real person behind this made-up facade. Her aggression can turn into warmth in a second – and the other way round. Her mindset changes from a hearty laugh into the deepest despair. Her sentences are deep and meaningful half of the time, the other half you’re left wondering what on earth is she on about? Toyah is like dynamite made out of flesh, the slightest emotional spark will set her off.

She also has a soft sweeter side which the audience rarely gets to see. The aggression she hides behind when dealing with the mass media is of course there on purpose. The media in turn treats her with contempt and suspicion. For this reason she feels misunderstood and defends herself in a way even Lou Reed would be proud of.

• Continue reading at Dreamscape’s Press Archive. Read another rare Finnish interview with Toyah here.

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