|1. Plane Crash|
|2. Push The Hand|
|3. Little Sin|
|6. You'll Come Down|
|7. Pressed Against The Sky|
|8. What We Have We Steal|
|9. Jigsaw Girl|
|11. Hell Below/Stars Above|
In the beginning--well, in the early '90s, anyway--there was grunge. The sound from Northwest bands like Mudhoney and Nirvana sliced razor-sharp punk into thick slabs of Black Sabbath-influenced metal to forever fray the mainstream public's image of straight-ahead rock & roll. As the '90s creeped on, rockers like Stone Temple Pilots and Bush were taking the fringes of the Seattle sound and smoothing them into modern radio rock. In 1994, the Texas band the Toadies stepped up to the post-grunge plate with the major-label release of Rubberneck. The album went platinum and the single "Possum Kingdom" hit the alternative and hard-rock radio circuit pretty hard. The critics scratched their heads, though, claiming the band was just a bland reworking of the classic Nirvana sound.
Seven years later, the band released their Rubberneck follow-up, Hell Below/Stars Above, and critics are still scratching their heads. The album offers highly charged, raw-throated vocals and a wall of aggressive rock built on solid bricks of distortion ("Sweetness," "Plane Crash," "Push the Hand," "Heel"), but it still lacks the intricacy and hooks of, say, a Foo Fighters album. Sure, there are some slower songs ("Pressed Against the Sky") that give front man Todd Lewis a break from the testosterone rants, but overall Hell Below feels like one long song of Warped Tour-era rock that too easily blends into itself. --Jennifer Maerz
this is one of the best albums ever, i started listening to it a month ago and i dont plan to take it out of my cd player any time soon. Read morePublished on Feb. 6 2004 by "sublime7666"
This is one of the best albums of 2001, and it's too bad that Amazon's critic probably only gave it a quick once-through before she reviewed it. Read morePublished on Oct. 29 2003 by Elliot Patton
...give the Toadies credit for the sound they produced. They take away the whiny vocals and repetitive three-chord ensembles that most punk brings to the table and keeps the... Read morePublished on May 31 2003 by "nomar9"
There are a lot of bands who cover dark, depressing topics with their music. No more do bands like Joy Division and the Cure corner the market on sadness. Read morePublished on Jan. 20 2003 by C. L. Swearingen
...the baddest of the bad, the coolest of the cool. Very good. It is of their best work.Published on Dec 24 2002
I'm not sure I've ever heard an album as solid as Rubberneck. It seems as though the band put a lot of effort into making the songs on Hell Below/Stars Above catchy. Read morePublished on May 30 2002 by C. L. Stone
I loved their album "Rubberneck". I saw them in concert in the late 1990's and they were awesome. Read morePublished on May 3 2002 by Claire
I was in college in San Jose, CA when "Rubberneck" came out. It was awesome that bands where still putting heavy pop/rock music even after Nirvana, plus these guys weren't from the... Read morePublished on April 8 2002 by Kurt Ruff
It's a shame that the Toadies broke up in late 2001 a few months after the release of Hell Below/Stars Above. Read morePublished on March 26 2002 by MegaDC