Based out of Glasgow, Order Of The Toad are something of a supergroup formed around the songwriting of Gemma Fleet, known herself as a member of Current Affairs and formerly, a personal favourite, The Wharves. Joined by bandmates from the likes of Open Face, Robert Sotelo and Nightshift, Order Of Toad recently expanded to a quartet with the addition of new guitarist Fionnan. Last week the band teamed up with Gringo Records and Hidden Bay Records for the release of their third album, Spirit Man. Following the release, today the band are premiering the video that accompanies the album’s opening track, Subterranean.
Subterranean enters with a swagger, the steady guitars and driving bass propelling the track forward nodding simultaneously to the lo-fi strut of The Velvet Underground and the sashaying bluster of New Wave. The track really comes to life as Gemma’s vocal enters, combining the effortless cool of Grace Slick and the knowing wink of The Fiery Furnace’s Eleanor Friedberger.
The accompanying video features a string of ancient objects from ancient tools through to cave paintings and animal skulls, nodding to the track’s earthly, faintly historical origins, as Gemma sings at one point, “you are the key to unlock evolution”. As the track progresses, the objects seem to become more sophisticated along with it, as if showing us the links from where we were to where we are now. Order of the Toad remain a somewhat mysterious project, crafting a sense that only through listening carefully can we start to make sense of their message, this is music that rewards those willing to invest in it, give this band your time, and you’ll find there’s an awful lot to love.