Jul 24, 2013

How to not sound like an asshole? Grimace. Dunno. These are two of my favorite contemporary bands. This should be a slam dunk. I should have played this so many times that the needle on the TTK side has bitten through the plastic and plays the Future Virgins songs backwards. Don’t get me wrong. I like it. But I don’t love it. And, to further my dipshittedness, I can’t put my finger on it. There’s nothing wrong. The songs are very good. But something’s missing for me as a stand-alone piece of music. Something intangible. Some itchy magic. Future Virgins: Ashley’s forlorn-yet-wise voice? Check. Meaningful, inclusive, introspective lyrics? Check. Mike Pack and Cole Champion building fortresses of bass and drums? Check. Billie’s guitar snaking like a caduceus around Ashley’s? Check. The band having full control of their sound in the studio? Check. Toys That Kill: “Maybe This Cult Is Way Off” is like the love making I read about in how-to books with illustrations of hairy people: a slow-builder, foreplay-induced, long climaxer of a song. I’ve been saying this for years—infrastructure makes longevity possible. Ever since the TTK guys all got steady employment and Todd set up Clown Sound Studios in the garage in his back yard, the wheels on their productivity train have been moving heavy loads. You know it’s TTK from the second note… fuck, man, why isn’t this slaying me? Maybe it’s just an indication of how much I truly love their back catalog. And in the end, these bands on an off day are still some of the best we’ve ever known. –Todd Taylor

 –todd (Drunken Sailor)