Release Date: Mar 20, 2012
Record label: Full Time Hobby
Genre(s): Alternative/Indie Rock
This should represent a simple square peg/square hole equation: twee Toronto turncoats [a]Hooded Fang[/a] grasp tropical hipster coattails in a stylistically cynical second album about-turn. Case closed. Except dammit if they’re not real handy at no-fi surf-rock jangle, dismissing aforementioned charges inside an unapologetically upbeat 23 minutes.
HOODED FANG play the Lower Ossington Theatre August 5. See listing Rating: NNN If you're only now coming to the Hooded Fang party, you'll likely very much enjoy the Toronto six-piece's new album of simple, lo-fi surf rock fuelled by Daniel Lee's charismatic, laconic singing and melodies as memorable as ever. But fans of Album, their recent effort, might lament the notable loss of innocence that seems to have occurred over the past nine months (which they spent touring constantly - maybe that's a clue).
Tosta Mista is being pitched as a break-up album – the break-up being between two of the Canadian band's members – but only the foolish would turn to Hooded Fang in search of earnest poetry about heartbreak. That much is clear on Clap, whose choruses involves Daniel Lee singing at his departed ex: "When you take off all your clothes/ You still look like an icy ho. " Tosta Mista is nothing if not insubstantial: from its 23-minute running length (just seven actual songs, with three instrumental refrains) to its chosen genre (60s-styled beat pop), it cries out not to be taken seriously, no matter how personal the wounds of its makers might be.
Albums, like lovers, come in all shapes and sizes, and we fall for them for all sorts of different reasons. Maybe your favourite record came along and nursed you at a tricky time in your life; maybe it makes you feel like you’ve never felt before; or maybe it’s guaranteed to piss of your parents, and that’s reason enough to keep it around. The point is this: just as appearances shouldn’t matter when you’re falling in love with a person, trivial aesthetic points like length shouldn’t stop you falling in love with an album.
A cannily concise second set from the Polaris Prize-nominated Canadians. Mike Diver 2012 Blurring the lines between album and EP, this second ‘full’-length from Canadian collective Hooded Fang rocks to a meagre 23-minute running time, and once shorn of a trio of interlude-y cuts called Big Blue (I, II and III respectively) features just seven songs ‘proper’. But by focusing on the sweetest of hooks amid some wonderfully retro-twanging surf guitar and licks from dusty Tijuana barrooms, it really clicks with immediate effect.
Sometimes an album comes along that is a complete throwback; the sound is so redolent of an earlier time that you are convinced that it has been exhumed from the past. The full length debut album from Toronto garage rockers Hooded Fang is certainly one of those albums.Hooded Fang are unashamedly in thrall to the 1960s and the lo-fi good time rock and roll on ‘Tosta Mista’ is a very retrogressive recreation of the 1960s garage rock sound. The first thing that immediately strikes you about the record is its very short running time, the album clocks in at only 23 minutes and that is despite featuring three largely superfluous and aimless 30 second instrumentals.