No Deliverance

In 1994, record companies were choking the market with the “next Nirvana” (with generally hideous results), and the Toadies were lumped in with the rest of ’em as the band’s creepy single “Possum Kingdom” bumped in slackers’ cars everywhere. The comparisons were unwarranted. But I must say I never thought the band would put out a second record, let alone a third. Well, here were are in 2008, and the Toadies give us No Deliverance, released a cool seven years after Hell Below/Stars Above, which came seven years after their debut, Rubberneck. Not much has changed. Here the Toadies’ ZZ Top-meets-Pixies riffery is as jagged and juicy as ever, twisting around vocalist Vaden Todd Lewis’ dark tales of love and lust. Some of the album’s early songs are bland and ready-made for modern-rock radio. But get a little deeper and songs like “Hell in High Water” and “Don’t Go My Way”—with Lewis’ throat-blistering vocals and chunka-chunka guitars—show why these guys could easily kick Bush’s and the Stone Temple Pilots’ asses any day.