With the bright pop colours of Speed Racer and all the peril of Death Race 2000, Tokky Horror’s new EP I Found The Answers And Now I Want More demonstrates that their geographic triangle of Liverpool, London and Manchester is at peak cohesion. With Ava Akira and Mollie Rush on vocals and Zee Davine on production and instrumentation Tokky Horror manage to create the feeling that you have followed a rabbit down a hole to a dark, uber-hip nightclub where you were handed a bottle labelled ‘Drink Me’ by a neon caterpillar. Once taken, you dance yourself into sweat-soaked frenzy held up by Tokky Horror’s pulsing music and a neon and laser overload.
The EP leads with a left hook; the former single ‘Girl Racer’ which I said in my review last year was “a full-tilt, exhilarating debut that sparkles with chrome exhausts, flame decals and a fuel injected ethos that had my brain tingling 4 bars in. It’s like fire caught fire”. It still excites me every time I hear it; my pulse quickens, and I get itchy palms with feeling I want to do something thrilling. ‘Simulate Me’ is the EP’s health check, a quick prod with a stethoscope and pump of a blood pressure monitor to make sure you haven’t been too affected by ‘Girl Racer’. It moves into your ears like a fast tide with high BPM drums, swirling arpeggios and statement vocals punching through with a phrase, a tune and a repetitive phrase.
‘Godliness’ is chance to take a breather, drink some water and take in the gentlest of all the tracks on this EP (and by gentle I mean the least battering). It’s a slow build club track with tuneful vocals and light drum and bass rhythms that goes off half way into a careening car-without-breaks. ‘Eden on Acid’ does what it says on the tin. Imagine you’re drunk and someone straps you into a Zorb and then pushes you off Hardknott Pass . You bounce, directionless forever, your spirit level never to settle. The final track, ‘Sleeper’, strips the opening riff from The Beastie Boys ‘Sabotage’, a bold move as taking on something so perfect is a near-impossible task. But Tokky Horror smash it and tease out a brave new world full of road-rash bass and wub-wub lows alongside hypnotic vocals and a spectral music box refrain. Definitely not sabotaged.
It’s an intoxicating EP. Tokky Horror make club-pop-indie that is super-charged 8-bit and must be fuelled by an interdimensional portal. I’ve never been fired out of a canon or bungie jumped but Tokky Horror’s music feel like someone managed to combine both and transplant it into their musical output. I’ll leave the last word to Tokky Horror’s sonic lightning rod, Zee Davine, who sums it all up perfectly:
“It’s playing a sampler like a punk would traditionally play a guitar. Sloppy but honest. It’s tongue in cheek and doesn’t take itself too seriously. And yet we sing about our feminine lives, our purpose, our regrets, our queerness. It’s that honesty that I think connects you to this EP—a break from overproduced electro nonsense only fit to be a ringtone, and the fifth wave of punk rock imitating the sound of their grandad’s generation.”
Review by Paul F Cook