Japanese Math Rock Legends TOE Return With New Album / Music Video

As if these legends need the help of our little website…either way, we have to share this new MV for a beautiful track ‘Loneliness Will Shine’ off Japanese math rock legends TOE‘s brand new album ‘Now See The Light’. For the legions of fans of the band, it’s exactly what you want to hear from a band that consistently pushes the envelope on what post rock/post hardcore/post punk/emo/math rock can possibly sound like. The addition of those lightly sung words just adds to those layers…

This is the band’s fourth full length and is out on TOPSHELF RECORDS.

The full write up from the label is as follows:

Since forming in 2000, toe have synthesized everything from pop, post- and math-rock, jazz, R&B, and electronic into one of the most distinct sounds in rock music. Their debut LP the book about my idle plot on a vague anxiety (2005) left an unmistakable imprint across the splintered worlds of instrumental and experimental music, exploding the tenets of post-rock with writing and performances that channel the intensity of hardcore.

toe have kept the same lineup since their inception. Yamazaki Hirokazu’s acoustic and Mino Takaaki’s electric guitars often juxtapose one another against the backdrop of drummer Kashikura Takashi’s unmatched sense of feel and rhythm, specializing in phrases that trick the listener with unanticipated backbeats and climactic gasps. Bassist Yamane Satoshi lends depth to the staccato, explorative melodies, gluing them to, and making sense of Takashi’s unique style.

The debut’s follow-up, For Long Tomorrow (2009), was a breakthrough that explored their pop and jazz DNA, as well cementing comparisons to post-rock forebears and contemporaries like Tortoise. For Long Tomorrow also produced one of toe’s better known songs in “グッドバイ / Goodbye,” a re-recording of the 2006 track from the New Sentimentality EP, this time featuring Japanese pop singer Asako Toki.

2015’s Hear You was defined by its loosening of the rhythmically frenzied work that predated it. Understated instrumentation stretched and smeared style and genre spectra, as heard in the piano-laden “オトトタイミングキミト”; the drumless rap on “Time Goes”; and the tabla, synth, and chanting in “G.O.O.D L.U.C.K.” Although such experimentation was always foreshadowed by the band’s early EPs songs, ideas we forgot (2003) and The Future Is Now (2012)—and later echoed by Our Latest Number (2018)—Hear You is still subdued, a marked departure from the band’s prior work.

NOW I SEE THE LIGHT (2024), toe’s fourth full-length album, is a bridge between the experimental restraint of their later work and the explosive abandon of their earlier output. From the opening tracks, toe balance serpentine passages against meditative repetition. On “LONELINESS WILL SHINE,” “サニーボーイ・ラプソディ,” and “NOW I SEE THE LIGHT,” Hirokazu reprises his role as part-time vocalist, breaking the band yet further from the instrumental work that formerly defined them. As a whole, NOW I SEE THE LIGHT closes the loop between early and late toe, giving them a clean slate for their new outlook.”


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