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4.6 out of 5 stars27
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 19 September 2012
These days, it is all but impossible to make an original statement. An artist may think that what they have created is new and exciting, only to find later that it has been done before, often more than once. Fortunately, a lack of originality needn't be a hurdle as long as the final product is good, and Toy are a band that knows that there is still plenty of mileage in the jangly guitar/swirling synth/laconic vocal combo.

Right from the first chords they recall the fuzz-drenched psychedelicacies of such acts as My Bloody Valentine, Ride, Primary Colours era Horrors or a leaner, indier Secret Machines. They create soundscapes that swoon with guitar and synthesised strings, layered over a vocal that, whilst limited in range, knows exactly its business and how to go about it.

They do have their own twists on the accepted recipe to keep things interesting, though. Second track 'Reasons Why' is a prime example - opening with a mutant variant of 'Theme From A Summer Place', the song morphs into early Verve as played by people who have only recently picked up an instrument, creating beautiful music more by accident than by design. One suspects that a great deal of effort has been expended to sound so effortless.

It takes a feat of musical gymnastics to simultaneously gaze at one's shoes and beyond the horizon, but Toy achieve it with aplomb, the songs merging into one mighty flow but popping up with moments of unexpected invention to keep the listener on their toes. This is a captivating album from start to finish - especially the final moments of album closer 'Kopter', which rattles along with a sudden burst of energy and pulsing rhythm, leaving the listener excited by the prospect of starting the album afresh.

Toy's self-titled offering is as impressive a debut as you are likely to find. To the right person and in the right circumstances, it has the potential to blow minds, even if its moves are somewhat familiar.
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on 27 February 2006
Imagine that the last security guard has left the biggest toy shop in the world at the close of the day. As the lights get turned off and the doors are locked, one by one the toys come alive to do what they were made to do. The sounds on this album are exquisite, elaborate, intricate and beautiful. This really is a treat for the ears. We are all likely to relate to it from the angle of our childhood, but also from a good appetite for really catchy music. A very stylish peice of work.
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on 5 July 2006
Toy are a Scandinavian/ British collaboration, and although you can detect some of the sensibilities of Royksopp in there, the sound is unique. This delightfully childlike slice of electronica would not be out of place in a Nintendo game, and is what I imagine Super Mario might listen to...if he had a day off from bouncing off virtual platforms. It may have the sonic qualities of a cartoon in primary colours, sunny, and filled with innocent humour, but the music is deceptively complex with real progressions and variation which reward repeated listening. Recommended... although your friends may look at you slightly askew if you hit them with it at an after party. Surprisingly satisfying.
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on 18 April 2013
I bought this album a few months ago now,and i still love virtually every track on it. It sounds like Jesus Mary chain/Black rebel motorcycle club,but each track is different,no weak ones on here-Love this,Buy it...
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on 13 September 2012
Oh it seems so simple.take all the best british indie music ever made.mix in a little krautrock.loads of swagger.make it all seem effortless and look cool while doing it.release a debut album that backs up any hype,that not only is the best album of 2012 but also one of the best debut albums ever.
Like all great albums the opening track 'COLOUR'S RUNNING OUT' instantly sets the mood with its shimmering guitars and hypnotic efforts.very psychedelic.
(Now in these days of homemade cd's i've personally added toy's fantastic,epic debut single LEFT MYSELF BEHIND as track 2.it fits just perfect.its staggering how confident the band are to leave this song off the lp.)
THE REASONS WHY is a poppy my bloody valentineish little beauty
DEAD AND GONE is possibly the best song on the lp.an epic track that speeds hypnotically along til it drops into a dreamy hush before redoubling its efforts to blaze a lysergic full tilt trip home.
LOSE MY WAY was the third single and is more poppish bliss.
DRIFTING DEEPER is a synth drenched driving instrumental.very droney and full of spacey effects.
MOTORING was the second single.awesome vocals over a krautrock groove and ringing guitars.
MY HEART SKIPS A BEAT is the most bittersweet romantic song on the lp.and an obvious sounding single.
STRANGE is the lps most horrors like song(the band are often liken to the horrors).
MAKE IT MINE more dreamy pop.
OMNI is a short soundscape.
WALK UP TO ME is a slow brooding ballad
KOPTER is another long hypnotic epic and a perfect closer.
Also a band whose single b sides are worth hunting down.especially BRIGHT WHITE SHIMMERING SUN which was the flip of the LOSE MY WAY single.
Epic,Fuzzy,Droney,Spacey Pyschedelic Brilliance.....YOU NEED THIS ALBUM.
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on 19 April 2013
One of the best albums of last year. First heard on 6music, and then saw them live last year, brilliant. Just buy it.
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on 28 March 2014
Went to see live and fell for their music, this album is equalled by its follow-up (Join The Dots). I recommend both
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on 13 June 2006
Toy are UK composer, Alisdair Stirling, and Jorgen Traeen, a producer from Norway. As a duo, their playful tunes mix kids TV and Japanese-style electronica with a touch of Scadanavian electro weirdness.

Opener, Grass Beatbox, will burrow itself inside your skull and stay there for months. It's saccharine sweet melody is irritating and gloriously infectious in equal measure. Later, Valley Cars offers a baseline that sounds like it's being powered by Woody Woodpecker's beak.

Swingswung is a subliminal delight with only what sounds like a cow's "moo" disturbing the peace, while Golden Fish In Pool is incidental elevator music infused with beats, grooves and a stifled trombone, the result of which is the most catchy pop number on the album.

Toy is the mish-mash of a thousand kids' cartoon characters running riot, which might sound as annoying as Crazy Frog on paper, but it's actually incredibly adorable and very charming.
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on 8 July 2013
Combines subtle shoegazery rock - multiple layers of fast-but-careful guitar strums and keyboards - with hard-driving rhythms + absolutely beautiful melodies. For such a new band, this is a surprisingly sophisticated first album.

Tunes are atmospheric, pschedelic, dark but paradoxically joyous. Brings to mind the best of older bands like My Bloody Valentine, Spiritualized, but catchier, like Lush or maybe Ride. Still sounds newer, more futuristic. If pushed to find a complaint, I would say that lyrically they are a bit (maybe) simplistic, but that could be put down to the band's youth.

The sad thing about these guys is, it is specifically because they have surfaced with such lovely, catchy songs in this current sea of sound-alike "indie-rock-pop" bands, that they will no doubt be overlooked, if not ignored, by the band-wagon obsessed music press.
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on 7 May 2013
Saw this band alongside British Sea Power in London, and they were amazing! I'd never heard of them before, but on the strength of their live performance I bought this album and I was not disappointed. Listen at volume, there is so much to hear and you don't want to miss a note!
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