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Toxic Shame - 2001 Full Circle


TOXIC SHAME - FULL CIRCLE (2001, UNIVERSAL MUSIC SOUTH AFRICA)
Deon Du Toit - vocals, guitars
Jon Buckley - lead guitars, vocals


Background
Toxic Shame are a pair of guys from Johannesburg, South Africa - totally disillusioned with the grunge, hip hop, r & b trash on the charts, they decided to make the kind of music they were missing: classic melodic rock encompassing AOR, hard rock and even some bluesier stylings as well. While they've recorded at least seven albums independently (yes folks, seven!), this is their first official release.

The Songs
'Mirror Of Lies' immediately showcases their grasp of melody and harmonising, and despite the offputting tripped up beat, it's quite irresistible after a few listens. 'Always Outa Reach' incorporates some bluesy elements and rolls along at mid tempo, but 'Sittin (Take Me Home)' is the first absolute killer. A power AOR ballad in the finest tradition, you'd think it could compare to any number of other bands, but their distinctively original approach to melody makes comparisons difficult and pointless. 'Incompleted' is solid and catchy, while The 'Night Lives In Your Eyes' will give you chills - a majestic slice of balladry, imagine Randy Jackson (Zebra) singing a classic Journey or Toto power ballad and you're nearly there. 'I Saw I Conquered I Came' is a towering riffladen rocker, something like AC/DC with a better grasp of melody and a far superior vocalist. Other highlights include the CSNY harmonising of 'Postcard Picture People', the ethereal Yes like melodies of 'Time' (that chorus would've done any song on '90125' proud), and the infectious ballad 'Let You Go'. I almost forgot, 'Devil's Daughter' is the best mid tempo AOR anthem ever to emerge from my country.

In Summary
There are fifteen tracks on offer, presenting a varied array of styles and textures while never compromising the melody factor. This is truly the best South African album since Stingray's immortal 'Operation Stingray' - in short, it's a necessary addition to your collection if you take your AOR seriously (and we know you do).

URL: www.legendmusic.co.za

Track Listing:
01 Mirror Of Lies
02 Always Outta Reach
03 Sittin' (Take Me Home)
04 Incompleted
05 The Night Lives In Your Eyes
06 On Parole
07 I Saw I Conquered I Came
08 Not Guilty
09 Postcard Picture People
10 Use It On Me
11 Time
12 Let You Go
13 Loser
14 Devil's Daughter
15 Rev It Up

Related Articles:

Toxic Shame - 2001 Full Circle


Toxic Shame - 2002 Tender Loving Abuse


Toxic Shame - 2002 Interview with Jon Buckley and Deon Du Toit


Toxic Shame - 2003 Kicking And Screaming


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