toe
New Sentimentality


3.5
great

Review

by Sobhi Youssef EMERITUS
August 20th, 2007 | 18 replies | 11,008 views


Release Date: 2006 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A great offering of post-rock that leaves you hungry for their next full-length album.

From the introductory snapping of sticks (or thumbs, I'm not quite sure) to the outro sample of birds chirping, Toe easily manages to keep any listener fully absorbed throughout the course of the EP. Although this should be a simple task for most somewhat-talented groups (especially with a four-track, 20 minute recording), Toe impresses especially with their extremely capable rhythm section. Hailing from Japan, the quartet is comprised of:

- Kashikura Takashi / Drums
- Mino Takaaki / Guitar
- Yamane Satoshi / Bass
- Yamazaki Hirokazu / Guitar
- Beyond this seemingly basic rhythm and guitar setup, the almost pearl-drop sound of a rhodes piano is sprinkled throughout the album.

For the sake of comparison, Toe most closely resembles an eclectic interbreeding between Do Make Say Think and Don Caballero. That is, the drummer is absolutely fantastic, yet tasteful, and the other instrumentalists create a dreamy post-rock atmosphere - sans the synth overdose that typifies Do Make Say Think's ambiance. A constant in most post-rock, the group manages to successfully employ minimalism through slight melodic and dynamic shifts in their (primarily acoustic, but also clean electric) guitar-riffing. The mentioned rhodes piano tends to feed off of the guitar playing in a way; it's hard to notice, but in many areas it adds to the composition as a kind of "icing on the cake", per se. The best example of this is on track three, "New Sentimentality".

All of this post-rock goodness manages to cast the perfect spotlight on the rhythm section. The bass work is outstanding, as the bassist effectively feeds off of either the melody or the drums when it makes sense to - he is not another "just there" bassist by any means. The star of the show, Kashikura Takashi (drums), is the real deal - and the true substance of Toe. A master of his trade, he rarely overplays, all of his fills are exceptional, and his snare work is especially impressive, as exemplified by track two, "1/21".

However, there are a couple points that keep New Sentimentality from being a truly exceptional post-rock masterpiece. One aspect that slightly turned me off were the vocals present on the final track, "Goodbye"; the vocalist isn't tone deaf, he's just mediocre and doesn't do anything for the band (with his voice obviously), which really brought down the EP a peg for me. Most importantly, even though the drummer is the focal point of the band and is truly talented, he does overplay at times. In the title track, there are just too many things going on at that drum set for it to be a coherent song; it nearly sounds like a four-minute-long drum solo. Although slightly detracting, it's pretty damn awesome for any drummer to behold.

I highly recommend this album to any fan of post-rock and to any serious drummer. Takashi is one of those drummers that could bring his snare to your house and keep you entertained for quite a while.

Songs to check out
- "1/21"
- "New Sentimentality" (but be prepared for extreme rhythmic masturbation)



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user ratings (59)
Chart.
3.9
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
kingsoby1
Emeritus
August 20th 2007



4950 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Second review since October, woo...

pixiesfanyo
August 20th 2007



1222 Comments


This album is really great. Didn't know anyone else on MX was into it or knew about it.This Message Edited On 08.20.07

darthlaw
August 20th 2007



12 Comments


In my opinion this is their best release. The drums on this album are amazing.

jrowa001
August 20th 2007



8750 Comments


i want to get this, i have Songs Ideas We Forgot and its really good

kingsoby1
Emeritus
August 20th 2007



4950 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

So is the review acceptable?

kingsoby1
Emeritus
August 21st 2007



4950 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

[quote='pixiesfanyo']This album is really great. Didn't know anyone else on MX was into it or knew about it.[/quote] I have a friend that's huge into Supercar, Mono, and Boredoms... got me into the other side of the ocean tunes. I'll probably be reviewing some more stuff that really isn't on here... seems like a good way to build up my "ranking" or whatever, if anyone voted, anyway.

pixiesfanyo
August 21st 2007



1222 Comments


Rankings are basically about how many reviews you have tbh.

I can get you into some mad Japanese stuff if you want.

antihippy
August 21st 2007



696 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

yeah, this stuff is good.

their drumming is great.

kingsoby1
Emeritus
August 21st 2007



4950 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

For sure... hit me up on AIM anytime. You actually got me into Kayo Dot when I first signed on to this site last year.

Kyle
August 21st 2007



667 Comments


Yeah I've been digging this album for quite a while, I tried whoring it out on my blog but people havn't seemed to catch on yet. Anyway, it's cool.

Apocalyptic Raids
October 13th 2007



810 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

awesome ep

samthebassman
December 23rd 2007



2164 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Gorgeous album.

johnnyblaze
April 2nd 2008



2601 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

wow, realllly good.

BenZaiten
March 2nd 2009



13 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Fell in love with these guys ever since I first saw Velvet Blanc on youtube.




MassiveAttack
June 9th 2009



2688 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

So Sobhi kinda late on this comment, but when are ya going to review an album release by them? By the way the review is spot on with the comparisons and such. I really enjoyed this EP and will probably check out their albums soon.

kingsoby1
Emeritus
October 11th 2009



4950 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This wasn't tagged in my convos, so just noticed it. I don't know if I'll ever review a post rock record again lol.

MassiveAttack
December 8th 2009



2688 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I'll just have to review their latest because its upcoming in my future listens!

BLUEOmni
April 12th 2012



684 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Toe is like sex for my ears, and, well, my ears do like sex :P



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