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Toy Matinee (Special Edition) [Original recording reissued]

Toy Matinee Audio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Audio CD (2 April 2001)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording reissued
  • Label: Unitone
  • ASIN: B000058TDD
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 431,661 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Last Plane Out
2. Turn It On Salvador
3. Things She Said
4. Remember My Name
5. The Toy Matinee
6. Queen Of Misery
7. The Ballad Of Jenny Ledge
8. There Was A Little Boy
9. We Always Come Home
10. Eenitam Yot Eht
11. Blank Page
12. Things She Said
13. There Was A Little Boy
14. Last Plane Out

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Toy Matinee...No Kid Movie 16 Jun 2003
Format:Audio CD
Even if you're not a musician, have you ever heard a song for the first time and felt like you knew what the next line, or the part of the melody was going to be? Unfortunately, it happens a lot. What I can guarantee you, is that it won't happen on this album.
From the first moments of the lead off track "Last Plane Out," Toy Matinee is an album of such technical brilliance that it leaves even jaded musicans shaking their heads, while at the same time sounding fresh and friendly to non-technical types.
This is a pop album to be sure, but a a pop album so richly influenced by such great artists (The Beatles and Steely Dan come immediately to mind) that it transcends its genre.The playing is wonderful...vocally, beautiful harmony and powerful lead vocals abound. Most impressive of all, not one melody on the album is predictable or recalls something you've heard in the past. Chord progressions and melodic hooks are memorable, but always a surprise. Just when you think you feel like singing along, each song takes a quick little jog somewhere else that not only pleasantly catches you off guard, but actually stretches ones appreciation of just how much can still be done within a format where everything is thought to HAVE been done already.
It comes as an added bonus that this disc is so well recorded that I and others I know have used it for years to audition new sound systems...speakers, preamps, etc. It's on the short list of my favorite pop recordings for this kind of thing....clean, dynamic, and powerful.
"Toy Matinee" is accessible without being too commercial, "artsy" without being pompous, and slick without sounding sterile. A true breath of fresh air, and will still sound unique ten years from now.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Toy Matinee "An Unfound Treasure" 18 Jan 2006
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Buy Toy Matineee, listen to it and relish the wonderful singing, songwriting, recording (probably the best CD/DVD-Audio disc you have ever heard). One main problem exists however.
The main guy went and died shortly after making it and ended the Toy Matinee story. Like Eva cassidy, these guys would have been just as popular if they had survived just a little longer maybe. Difference is with Toy, most people have never heard of them.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  65 reviews
22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Music doesn't get better. Really. 2 April 2001
By Lord Chimp - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Toy Matinee is really nothing more than a highly sophisticated pop record, although its sublime excellence goes far beyond anything like it. Kevin Gilbert and Patrick Leonard have an unmatched sense of melody and canny pop sensibility, and -- with plenty of diversity from song to song -- they've whipped up the perfect album. I find this album's greatness impossible to express. Quite simply, the ears hear what words cannot describe. The English language would need countless synonyms for "great," but it wouldn't be enough.
I'd like to say more, but little comes to mind. Every song offers here something different and exciting, and every facet of the album is flawless. It's well-composed, well-crafted, clever, charming, and...perfect. Certainly one of the best albums I own.
(Note: Kevin Gilbert was by far one of the most gifted musicians around, and his untimely death is truly a tragedy. Check out Gilbert's other albums, Thud and The Shaming of the True, the former being great and the latter being an unequivocal masterpiece.)
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hold yer brain... THIS IS PERFECTION 2 Oct 2001
By Jason A. Hoffman - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
At the constant urging of a friend who annoyingly discovers music before me, I picked up the self-titled album by Toy Matinee back in 1991...and found, without a doubt, one of the best albums I've ever heard. After a number of years being out of print, it is being rereleased in Digital surround...
Centered around Patrick Leonard (who has produced and played keys for everyone from Madonna to Phil Keaggy to Michael Jackson) and then twenty-one Kevin Gilbert (who went on to co-write Cheryl Crows first album before his death in 1996), Toy Matinee is surely a work of collaborative genius. Each song is sheer perfection in songwriting, lyrics, arrangement, musicianship, and production. The album opens with "Last Plane Out" as Gilbert intones tongue-in-cheek "We've kept the good old vices/ And labored to invent a few" against a progressive pop groove in this anthem against the wasteland of modern Western culture. "Turn It On Salvador" honors the surrealist painter with a rubbery bass line, eerie keyboards, and a swanky, wobbly, raucous rhythm that fits in perfectly with this artists work. Taking a more acoustic turn, "Things She Said" explores the sad life of a woman stuck in indecision. Likewise, "Queen of Misery" is the sad tale of a woman who's "looking for someone to give the love that I denied" in the arms of strangers and "The Ballad of Jenny Ledge", the song that received local airplay on 103.9, is a true story of a woman who values financial security over love. The closing song, "We Always Come Home", is a heart-wrenching tribute to gritty life in a small blue-collar town with such succinct lines as "Father worked the lifts in the old Tobin mine/ He always loved the saxophone/ But he had to keep us all alive." As you may have surmised, most of the songs are stories dealing with innocence lost, chances not taken, and decisions not made.
Musically, there is outstanding keyboard, guitar, and bass parts ( I have to mention Guy Pratt who is always in the pocket on this CD) but these are arranged such that they never steal the spotlight and detract from the overall song. It's difficult to put this album into a single style although the entire album is quite cohesive in sound and up-tempo despite the often melancholy lyrical subject matter. Progressive keyboard pop/ guitar rock with a groove and great harmonies? How about just plain good! While it only enjoyed limited sales at its original release, I know of no one who has heard this album that doesn't rank it among their favorites. Make it one of your favorites... it's the best music you've never heard.
The bonus tracks are a nice addition, very surprising in how the songs changed from their initial concept.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Greetings from Sodom, how we wish you were here.." 2 May 2003
By spiral_mind - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Just one album.. no followup, no tour (that I know of), no widespread recognition.. looking at the details, Toy Matinee seems exactly like a one-hit wonder without the hit. Far from it, however - this wonder may not have had any hits, but it's unanimously loved among those who've discovered it. Fantastic writing, intelligent lyrics and skilled production never go out of style, and this overlooked gem has plenty of them all to spare. It's as addictive as heroin, true, but as sweet and satisfying as your favorite kind of candy.
The music? Superlative pop. The album's first half is four of the most incredibly smart-yet-catchy, well-written and ear-pleasingly upbeat songs you could ever hope to hear. The tone of the others ranges between regretful and hopeful with nary a weak moment to be heard anywhere. "Things She Said" is wistful without descending into melodrama. The title track sadly wanders through a haunted playhouse of the mind. One of my favorite points is the way "Queen of Misery" and "The Ballad of Jenny Ledge" look at the situation of unrequited love from opposite sides, giving perspectives on both. (What can I say - I'm a sucker for an unromantic tune.) A few scattered extra tracks round things out: the extra "Blank Page" is as bleakly beautiful as "Toy Matinee" itself, and the alternate versions give an interesting new perspective on some of the regular album tracks.
Almost everything resists sounding dated, although "Queen of Misery" and "...Little Boy" unfortunately have an unmistakable 1980s synth-pop edge to them. But I can look past things like that when the writing is good enough, and the fact that I greatly enjoy every single track despite my deep-seated psychotic hatred of 80s music says some good things indeed about this album. If you like well-done pop, you owe it to yourself to check it out.. and no matter what their taste, EVERYONE should hear "Last Plane Out" at least once, since it's simply one of the most perfect four-minute pieces of music mankind has ever created.
There will probably never be another Toy Matinee, and even if there is, it'll be without the distinct voice and songwriting talent of the late Kevin Gilbert (who I also heartily recommend to anyone who likes this disc). This is it, folks: it's a rarity, a shining gem all its own, and the only one of its kind. Everyone I've played it for has unconditionally loved it. Buy, listen and discover a treasure that the music world deserves to hear much more of.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An unknown great 9 Feb 2001
By Scott S. - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
So few people have heard of Toy Matinee, yet everyone I have ever played it for loves it and must own it!! It is a great addition to ANY CD collection. If you love Steely Dan, early Gensis, Jethro Tull and well constructed music and lyrics, you will love Toy Matinee. This edition has several tracks added to it, including a previously unreleased ballad from the late great Kevin Gilbert - Toy Matinee's lead songwriter and vocalist. Also recommended Kevin Gilbert's Thud (his only solo album), The Shaming of The True - Kevin's rock opera (only available from [...]) and Third Matinee - Patrick Leonard's attempt to recreate the Toy Matinee sound w/o Kevin Gilbert (currently out of print)
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my 5 favorite albums 21 Jun 2009
By HUGH H. KIRKPATRICK - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
I'd seen the ads for this album when it first came out. The title and the cover art made me think it was probably just another 80's piece of fluff. It wasn't until years later that I finally heard the album by accident...and was completely blown away. Sadly, Kevin Gilbert died years ago, but he left a legacy of pop music brilliance that ranks up there with Lennon/McCartney and Brian Wilson. His subsequent solo album "Thud" is even better. The sound of the recording (good old analogue tape) is rich and warm without tons of studio effects and reverb, allowing the guitars and drums to heard with a clarity unmatched by most recordings of this era. Gilbert's lyrics are witty and intelligent.
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