Rock Candy Supplies the Love with New Toto Remasters
For years, Rock Candy Records has been doing great work with high-quality remasters of great album-oriented rock records. This year, they will take on one of the undisputed kings of that subgenre, with three reissues from Toto due on March 24.
Formed by a talented collection of session players, Toto – David Paich on keyboards, schoolmate Jeff Porcaro on drums, younger brother Steve adding his keyboard prowess, guitarist Steve Lukather, bassist David Hungate and lead singer Bobby Kimball – did a phenomenal job of fusing together pop, rock, R&B, jazz and progressive elements in a sound that was pretty immediately familiar (no surprise, given each member’s maniacally prolific discographies on the session front). 1978′s debut Toto spun off a Top 5 hit in “Hold the Line” (alongside moderate hits “I’ll Supply the Love” and “Georgy Porgy”) and earned the band a Grammy nomination for Best New Artist. Follow-ups Hydra (1979) and Turn Back (1981), featuring a slightly edgier, more lyrically obtuse presentation, were not nearly as successful, but 1982 saw the band bounce back in a big way – once with Toto IV, the band’s critical and commercial peak (with six Grammys and two smash singles, notably the chart-topping “Africa”), and once with Paich, Lukather and the Porcaros’ prominent session appearances on Michael Jackson’s Thriller, the other big album of 1982. (Steve Porcaro co-wrote one of the album’s seven hit singles, “Human Nature.”)
Hungate’s departure after the release of Toto IV and subsequent replacement by third brother Mike Porcaro was the first of a few lineup changes over the years. Vocalists included the late Fergie Frederiksen and Joseph Williams (son of film composer John), while Simon Phillips replaced Jeff Porcaro after his sudden passing in 1992. Today the band continues to tour, with Williams on vocals, new drummer Keith Carlock and legendary session bassist Nathan East filling in for the retired Mike Porcaro.
Featuring new remastering and essays, Toto, Hydra and Turn Back are solid new entries in the Rock Candy discography. (Toto features one bonus track – a 12″ dance version of “Georgy Porgy.”).
Toto (originally released as Columbia JC 35317, 1978 – reissued Rock Candy Records (U.K.), 2014)
I’ll Supply the Love
You Are the Flower
Takin’ It Back
Hold the Line
Georgy Porgy (Special Disco Version) (12″ A-side – Columbia 43-11040, 1978)
Hydra (originally released as Columbia FC 36229, 1979 – reissued Rock Candy Records (U.K.), 2014)
St. George & The Dragon
All Us Boys
A Secret Love
Turn Back (originally released as Columbia FC 36813, 1981 – reissued Rock Candy Records (U.K.), 2014)
Gift with a Golden Gun
Live for Today
A Million Miles Away
I Think I Could Stand You Forever
If It’s the Last Night
More info at Rock Candy Records.