Amersham Arms – Saturday 13th June
Saturday night in New Cross and the stage is set for psychedelic luminaries Toy to make their highly anticipated and fitting return to the Amersham Arms. Fitting because the band signed with Heavenly directly after playing the South London haunt back in 2012.
The enigmatic five-piece prove a force to be reckoned with, unleashing a relentless assault of noise during their way-over-an-hour set. Donning perfectly cut fringes and more hair between them than a Peckham salon, they make their way to the stage greeted by a rapturous reception and open with the lesser known track ‘Spirits Don’t Lie’.
‘Fall Out Of Love’, ‘Jungle Games’ and ‘Kopter’ follow, but it’s ‘Motoring’ and the ethereal ‘My Heart Skips A Beat’ that provoke the biggest reactions of the night, the latter causing the crowd to throw themselves stage bound with adoration.
It wasn’t all oldies though with the band debuting new track ‘We Will Disperse’ from their upcoming album. Lead singer Tom Dougall, the living embodiment of Syd Barrett, captures the audience in a daydream over lashings of Shoegaze – our legs quiver and our limbs go weak, naturally.
Midnight fast approaches and apart from the odd sip of Red Stripe the band has played nearly non-stop for over 60 minutes.
Ending with ‘Join The Dots’, the title track from their 2013 album and leading the evening to it’s crashing conclusion, one last thanks is in order before guitars swing around the stage, miraculously avoiding the house lighting.
The band leave the stage the same way they entered it, directly through the middle of the crowd, making a beeline for the exit. Toy’s return to the Amersham was compelling, diverse and all round entertaining. With album no.3 in the works we wait with bated breath to see what psyche’s much-loved troubadours have up their sleeves…