Toxik - Think This review

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Band: Toxik
Album: Think This
Release date: October 1989

01. Think This
02. Greed
03. Spontaneous
04. There Stood The Fence
05. Black And White
06. Technical Arrogance
07. WIR NJN8/In God
08. Machine Dream
09. Out On The Tiles [Led Zeppelin cover]
10. Shotgun Logic
11. Time After Time
12. Think That

I don't know about you, but I consider Toxik's debut release World Circus almost a masterpiece of an album. Consequently, as I was getting ready to make friends with their second album Think This I was expecting something as stunning. Unfortunately, I didn't get what I anticipated, and my original dissatisfaction spoilt the impression about this album for a long time. Think This is still a very solid Progressive/Technical Thrash album, which I'm in no position to bash.

Nevertheless, I just can't help but compare the two albums, and for me the latter is just less catchy, which means that the songwriting is a little worse overall. There is just something gut-grabbing missing in Think This, which was present on its predecessor. The vocal performance remained great though even with the unexpected vocalist change (Mike Sanderz was substituted by Charles Sabin) - and a very decent change I have to admit (listening to World Circus made me think Mike Sanderz was irreplaceable). One could even say that Charles' voice shows more variety since he combines both low- and high-pitched vocals unlike Mike and by that makes the album even more progressive. Although no one changed Josh Christian (John Donnelly joined the band as a second guitarist on this album, but he didn't write anything), the solos and riffs for some bloody reason are just not as enjoyable as on the previous record. I can't really call them recycled or unoriginal, but much fewer of them were as breath-taking as those on World Circus. Despite all this critique, Josh will always remain a very special guitarist and songwriter for me.

The songs themselves are pretty complicated (because it's prog/tech duh), so this album is not an easy listen at all and needs some time and attention to get into. I would even dare to say that Toxik were playing some of the most progressive stuff for their time. I seriously had had to listen to this album for almost ten times before I started to enjoy it. I don't know whether it's for the good of for the bad; it probably depends on your predisposition to something complex and intricate. Anyway, this is album is full of good songs, not all of which, to be frank, I enjoyed, but the objective part of me says they are of good quality and can be enjoyed by others.

As you can see this album arouses mixed emotions in me. On the one hand I like it, on the other I compared it with World Circus, and as I result I had hard times enjoying it, but that's just my personal thing (because I expected it to be perfect and flawless). As far as other people who are out for some non-generic Thrash, I am pretty sure you will really enjoy this album by this great band with their unique style. By the way, the album was re-released by Metal Mind Productions and Displeased Records a year ago, so you have a chance to buy it.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 9
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 9
Production: 8

Written by K†ulu | 15.10.2008


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.


Comments: 5   Visited by: 109 users
15.10.2008 - 20:29
Marcel Hubregtse
Grumpy Old Fuck
I quite agree with this review.

Although Spontaneous is still catchy and could easily have fitted on World Circus imo. But then again that is probably the oldest song off Think This since they already played it live with Mike Sanders handling vocals.

As for the re-issues...

Buy the Displeased ones and not the limited to 2000 Metal Mind ones because the Displeased reissues have loads of bonus material.
World Circus has as bonus the five-track Wasteland 1986 demo,
a version of Wasteland as featured on Metal Massacre IX, two unreleased tracks (Straight Razor, Finer Points Of Tragedy), a cover of Kiss' Parasite and three radio spots (one with King Diamond)

Think This has as bonus material a live rendition of Spontaneous and an instrumental demo
Member of the true crusade against European Flower Metal

Yesterday is dead and gone, tomorrow is out of sight
Dawn Crosby (r.i.p.)
05.04.1963 - 15.12.1996

12.03.2010 - 03:14
Baz Anderson
Even though I prefer the vocals by far on the first album, I think I might prefer this one overall.
Both fantastic albums though.
05.09.2010 - 15:47
Ag Fox
Angel No More
Wow... listening to this album (and band) for the first time and I AM BLOWN!
loves 小巫
05.09.2010 - 15:51
Written by Ag Fox on 05.09.2010 at 15:47

Wow... listening to this album (and band) for the first time and I AM BLOWN!

You should be.
Licensed under the GPLv3.
Relinquish proprietary software for a greater GNU/America.
16.10.2011 - 16:16
This is one of the albums that makes me think that thrash in general was vitaly bound to the cold-war-world with its global fear and discomfort, i mean that it peaked and then retired along with it - just consider many other well known peaks followed by impotence, demise or genre-switch: ... And Justice For All (88), Eternal Nightmare (88), Agent Orange (89), Never, Neverland (90), Rust In Peace (90), Seasons In The Abyss (90).
And after that suddenly unbearably happy anf comfortalble west world turned its musical expression inward for some challenge, notably chasing personal shadows (in Jung's meaning) creating black metal. Imo.

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