Gaudy for the sake of it, NOT A TOY’s self-titled release is as bombastic as it is fearless. Coincidently signed to Fearless Records, this former Fort Collins, now Denver band is hitting an incredible new level.
Before changing their name, these guys went by the name Shatterproof and their bizarre brand of gypsy/pop/metal made them an interesting band to watch in Northern Colorado. They had a lot of the pieces back then; the exuberance and charm of youth, an army of high school-aged fans, and the confidence to pull off a sound that some would call… erratic.
But after the shows were over and it came time to decide what’s next, they faced the problem of how to boil down their sporadic and expansive sound into something palatable for the masses. BandWagon’s Jed Murphy spoke with the band in 2018 (still calling themselves Shatterproof at the time) when they were taking a break from shows to fully focus on new material. Drummer Benji Spoliansky described the struggle of congealing all their different ideas, stating: “We’ve been writing what we feel. We were kinda scared with that because some of the stuff sounds a little different, but it’s still us and that’s what we’ve really started to believe and understand to be true.”
That process eventually gave way to NOT A TOY, and with the announcement of joining Fearless Records, their new chapter has begun. This seven track EP is the culmination of that work, fully capturing the craziness that has always been at the heart of their sound into something that’s, well, amazing.
Shooting for the stars, NOT A TOY is one of the most prolific recording projects to come out of Colorado in a while. Tracks like “Quit Quitting” and “Antidote” are pop gold and the overall quality of the EP is achingly immaculate.
2021 is going to get weird. Thankfully, NOT A TOY will be out there getting with the times.