• Toys

[Toys' Pics] Thinking Plague - In Extremis

Updated: Jan 16

Howdy, humans! Here's a big reco for all of you out there:

One of my favourite bands ever - Thinking Plague!

These human_folks have been making music since before I was born, but it took me nearly 25 years to find them. Masterminded since the beginning by Mike Johnson (guitar, etc.), the band has gone through several incarnations over the decades with notable members like Bob Drake, Dave Kerman, and Elaine di Falco, among many other innovative musicians. Noted for wonderfully complex, yet intuitive, progressive/RIO music, this is a band that can still make it pop, somehow. Amazing!

Their first legit full-length, In This Life, strikes a chord personally, but I'd say the best starting point for unfamiliar lovers of intricate music would be the monster of an album known as In Extremis. This one's got e-v-e-r-y-thing, including a 14 minute piece that demands such a lengthy running time with its thematic development and compositional movement (+ a candidate for best guitar solo ever). An album that pulls no punches; deep, dark, playful & amusing with no shortage of contrast or dynamic musical interplay. Check it out here:

Most recently (2017), the T-Plague team have given us a new album -- Hoping Against Hope. This one is certainly notable for nearly unbelievable advancements in the composition of Mike's truly unique music, and seemingly impossible instrumental interaction from all involved. While this is another brilliant effort fans are sure to love and study for a long time, its uncomfortable nature may be a little challenging for the uninitiated...maybe. (Far be it from me to tell you how to listen to music.)

In closing, this band changed my life and opened my mind and I hope many of you will find something to enjoy for yourself in their immersive catalogue.

Love, Toys