With a name like Toxic Smile, the Music Safari expected to meet a group that was going to play some pretty hard-core progressive metal. What I got was, as ProgArchives describes the band as…
.. ,a progressive rock/ metal act with a twist. They’re clearly trying to embrace the fact that the members are highly inspired by the Neo-Prog of the late ’70s, especially that of GENESIS on “Wind & Wuthering”. Recommended to fans of Symphonic Prog, Neo-Prog as well as regular Progressive Metal.
Which is probably is the reason that I liked the album 7 more than I figures I would!
The band started to form in the winter of ’96 in Leipzig where keyboard player Marek Arnold and drummer Daniel Zehe were tired of playing student jazz all the time. In the spring of ’96, a guitarist Uwe Reinholz joined the band. Now the hard part came. it took them two years to find the right vocalist, but for the band the wait was worth it! Since joining the band Larry B’s vocals have been a special trademark of the Tocix Smile sound. So now the band that was once two was now four, and it took another two years before bass player Robert Brenner joined up and completed the band. The band’s first release was Madness And Despair released on my birthday, October 1st in 2000. RetroTox Forte their secons album followed in 2004 . Since that time the band lost a founding member when Daniel Zehe left the band in the fall of 2004. He was replaces by Antonius Gruetzner, who has since been replaced byRobert Eisfeld. The band’s third full length album I’m Your Saviour was released in 2011. Which brings us up to date in 2013 when 7 was released!
Here’s some press about I’m Your Saviour
…”Saviour” löst die Zusage ein, erlöst wirklich aus Frickelhagel, Themenlosigkeitswüstenei und eierlosen, talentfreien Sängern im Progzirkus. Die Truppe um Mastermind Marek Arnold (key, sax; Stern-Combo-Meissen, Seven Steps To The Green Door u.a.) und Ausnahmesänger Larry B. scheint entschlossen, auch diesmal wieder die Quadratur der Progmusik einzulösen: Anspruch ohne Generve, Heavyness ohne jedes Gepose, internationale Qualität ohne US-Reisepass. (gaesteliste.de)
Offensichtlich haben es sich TOXIC SMILE zum Ziel gesetzt, das erste Prog-Highlight des Jahres 2011 zu veröffentlichen. … Die neun Stücke sind gespickt mit eingängigen Hooklines, spannungsreich arrangiert und verzichten auf belanglose Füll-Passagen… (metal.de)
Oh, good one in English!! Yeah!!
Prog metal this may be, but compared to most bands churning out this style of music Toxic Smile have managed to infuse enough of what made prog so damn interesting in the first place into their music that songs like “The Abyss” and “Poles Apart” will find both prog rockers and metallers equally impressed. When they combine these elements, as they do on closer and title track “I’m Your Saviour”, the results really are impressive and illustrate just what a talented bunch Toxic Smile are. (sea of tranquillity)
So Check Them Out!!
Whoa wait a minute! Hold the phone! While making that last link I saw that Marek Arnold is also a member of Seven Steps to the Green Door! Back earlier this year when I started this trek of discovering the world of prog rock, I listened to them and liked them so much that two of their albums are in my music library. And thanks to all this music listening that I’ve been doing I haven’t listened to then for a long while, but I am renewing my acquaintance with them as I am writing this!!
Well, back to my original thought that I thank God, music is the common language (anyone care to give me the gist of what those press quotes say) anyway let’s go deep “into the night: with “From Inside Out” from 7, which starts off with that “heavy prog” sound only to vier off a little more than halfway through…….