TOAD Blends Fun and Horror With Endless Night

It's not often that a band's social media bio nails it, but Tempe metal band TOAD's is a rare exception. There's no hyperbole, no invoking the names of far-out influences to seem "cultured."

It's straight and honest: "An American rock 'n' roll band from the 1970s trapped inside of a Scandinavian metal band from the early 1990s, scoring a John Carpenter film," the bio reads, compactly laying out the elements that make up TOAD's distinct sound. The band injects Blue Öyster Cult's A.O.R. high drama into Entombed's Swedish death metal template, with sludge and black metal elements adding color. And then there's that pervasive horror flick influence.

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Jason P. Woodbury is a music and pop-culture writer based in Phoenix. He is a regular contributor to the music blog Aquarium Drunkard and co-host of the Transmissions podcast.