Ecstatic, vital, and brilliantly unhinged, Guerilla Toss promotes positive energy and twisted spirituality through the less-traveled path of brutal, intelligent, live rock and roll dance music. Like a hurricane of healing bliss, a Guerilla Toss concert is more of a ritual than a performance. It is the unique pairing of musical voices and backgrounds that makes Guerilla Toss such a special party band. But they are more than that – GT gets real when you pay close attention. Their music is inspired by both tragedy and beauty, drug addiction/mental illness and the re-birth of the soul through spiritual practice and psychedelic drug healing – helping the listener overcome these mind-fuck hardships.
GT had a productive 2015, releasing their acclaimed DFA debut Flood Dosed, which cemented support from folks ranging from punk icon Henry Rollins to Busy P of Justice’s Ed Banger Records. The band also relocated from Boston to NYC. “We felt like it was time to move closer to our favorite active bands and artists and they all just so happen to live in NYC!” This didn’t slow the pace of their live performances – between road trips to universities and DIY Festivals, they have a de-facto residency at Brooklyn’s premiere underground venue Palisades and scored opening slots for The Juan Maclean and Mission of Burma.
“Eraser Stargazer” was written and recorded in 6 weeks of winter isolation in upstate New York. Fans of the group will hear all of the beloved hallmarks of the Guerilla Toss sound – solid bass grooves, squealing guitars, and kitchen sink percussion. Each instrument now occupies its own part of the audio spectrum, with vocalist/poet Kassie Carlson’s spirited incantations brought into focus. Album centerpiece Grass Shack is a perfect example of this leaner, yet tougher Toss. It traverses nearly seven minutes of game-show-winner keyboard stabs, mutant funk basslines, and time signature changes – all grounded by Peter Negroponte’s virtuosic drumming. Carlson describes the themes of the song as “A deep analytical depiction of a small unit of time, with heightened senses, Ripping yourself out of bed even though it might be harsh and overwhelming. Seeing patterns in the little things that make life beautiful.” Heavy subject matter permeates the rest of the record – but that doesn’t mean it’s a downer. Lead single “Diamond Girls” casts Carlson as a no-wave cheerleader over instrumentation reminiscent of DFA alumni Black Dice and The Rapture, culminating in the group’s catchiest chorus yet. Album closer “Doll Face On The Calico Highway” is the perfect summation – angular guitars, bells, and low-end vibrations interject and decompose as quickly as they appear, until a hissing cymbal is all that remains.