Thursday, January 25, 2007

Killing it With Toys: TOYS THAT KILL

Back in September I went to check out, what was supposed to be, a Queers show with Toys That Kill and the Hard-ons (Australia) supporting. After arriving early to chat with Todd (vox/guitar) from Toys That Kill, I learned the Queers had cancelled due to some “van troubles.” BUNK! But as all dudes know: when life hands you a lemon, drink a bunch of Shiner Bock and enjoy yourself anyway. So that’s just what I did.

“We were actually asked by the Queers to come out and do this tour with them,” explained Todd as to how the plans came about. “Joe just called and asked if we were interested. It’s funny ‘cos I actually bought a Hard-ons album when I was like 15 years old. I remember thinking it kinda sucked but, since then, I’ve had a bunch of friends tell me they’re awesome and I need to check them out.”

Queers or no Queers, I knew I’d be in for a bitch show because Pedro, CA’s Toys That Kill was on the bill. For those dudes unfamiliar with the band, they were formed out of the ashes of ‘90’s smart-ass snot-punkers, F.Y.P. Since then, they’ve consistently delivered the goods in the form of 3 full lengths and a slew of 7-inchers and eps, mostly released on Todd’s Recess Records.

While Los Angeles may be the closest major city to these Pedro-punkers, they claim zero affiliation to the city. In fact, while most bands in L.A. thrive to score gigs around town, hoping for some label-head to “notice” them, T.T.K. could give two shits about having an impact on the L.A. “scene.”

“We had a month-long weekly residency set up at the Echo (reputable L.A. venue) and we only showed up to one of the gigs.” Instead of getting wrapped up in the typical L.A. bullshit, they’re more comfortable in the confides of their own home: “We’d much rather play a house party in Pedro, or this place called Harold’s. What’s nice about playing shows there is that all the people that come out are genuinely excited to be there." Geography plays a part too, “[y]ou don’t just show up to Pedro. The way it’s set up—geographically—its in the middle of nowhere. You have to actually go out of your way to end up there.”

Todd’s infamous for having many fires burning at once. On top of his full-time gig rocking out with T.T.K., homeboy runs a record label, and fronts another band called the Underground Railroad to Candyland. “Underground Railroad actually has a tour lined up in Japan for March of 2007,” he points out with glee.

In regards to his other full-time gig: Recess Records is a friggin’ treasure-trove for punk rock goodness. With bands such as the Arrivals, the Bananas, Modern Machines, and Bent Outta Shape, and, of course, Toys That Kill, Recess is always churning out rock’n’roll goodness that’s surely better than most of the shit currently being released.

As for Toys That Kill’s live show, they do just that: they friggin’ kill! This particular September weeknight was no exception. Not only were they nice enough to sneak in my request for “Brain Attracts Flies,” the T.T.K. dudes shared some curiously delicious brownies and provided a boss night in general. Big ups to Todd and Jimmy for the righteous evening!

Check out Toys That Kill and spend up some loot at Recess Recordsl

This piece will be one of many righteous features in the next issue of Dudes Mag.

1 comment:

Curiology said...

Ahhh..the LA scene. It's a douchebag convention alright.