The Toasters - In Retrospect (Cover Artwork)

The Toasters

The Toasters: In RetrospectIn Retrospect (2003)
Union Label Group

Reviewer Rating: 4
User Rating:

Contributed by: adamAdam
(others by this writer | submit your own)

More than anything else, this compilation can be described as simply "necessary." The longest running ska band in the US has been increasingly absent from record stores since Moon Ska went under. In Retrospect remedies that, collecting 21 of the band's choice material from 1985's Recrimination.
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More than anything else, this compilation can be described as simply "necessary." The longest running ska band in the US has been increasingly absent from record stores since Moon Ska went under. In Retrospect remedies that, collecting 21 of the band's choice material from 1985's Recriminations EP to 2002's Enemy Of The System. Of course that leaves little room for anything other than the most obvious choices, but having all this material in one place is a huge plus.

Of course some of the band's best known singles show up here, including "East Side Beat," "Don't Let The Bastards Grind You Down" and "New York Fever." The Toasters have revisited many songs throughout their career, so the versions of some tracks included here will be cause for debate amongst their fans. This is especially true with a pair of re-makes form 1987's Skaboom. "Talk Is Cheap" is the Hard Band for Dead version while "Weekend In L.A." is the recording from 1997's Don't Let The Bastards Grind You Down. It's interesting to note that regardless of trends the Toaster's history is quite consistent. There is little differences in style between 85's "Razor Cut" which came on the heels of the UK 2-Tone scene and "2-Tone Army" from the height of the mainstream's obsession with 3rd wave revival. This solid direction adds the flow of In Retrospect.

This is a very listenable "best of" as the tracks have been appropriately sequenced and aren't simply left in chronological order. Despite the 18-year span in which the original records were recorded there's no obvious jumps in production or mixing from song to song. I'm convinced that to a Toasters-novice not familiar with the band's past, this album could play though without them ever realizing it's collection.

There isn't really a lot to say about the Toaster's In Retrospect. It's a faithful representation of the history of one of the most important American ska bands ever. There's no better introduction to the Toasters than this.


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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
Anonymous (June 6, 2006)

Oops meant to give it a ten.

Anonymous (June 6, 2006)

This is a really good album-if you like ska, you should get this.

By the way has anyone else noticed that the lyrics for "Talk is Cheap" on this album differ from what internet lyric sites say the lyrics are? Can anyone tell me where to find the real lyrics? Thanks.

Anonymous (March 25, 2005)

never heard the album but the toaster are a seriously banghshankin band an deserve motre credit then sum people give them

goin 2 c them myself a month 2day

better get my skankin' boots on

bunch of bells

Anonymous (February 24, 2005)

The Toasters basicly did the theme song for Kablaam. They credited the moon ska stompers.(thats there side project)

adam (December 1, 2003)

I'd prefer we just bury the word, it's one of the dumber genre conventions we've had to deal with...

Oh yeah, this is a Toasters review :) Toasters woo!


funkisdead (December 1, 2003)

Just because all those kids call it "emo" doesn't make it right...
I'm still waiting for a band to break out and redefine the "e" word for all of us.

adam (December 1, 2003)

Ok I can agree with the guy below. My point was that classifying Jawbreaker as emo based on the current "Dashboard, Saves the Day, Taking Back Sunday" classification of emo is wrong. Of course if your talking about the original meaning that's a different story, but nowawdays ~everything~ is "emo" to some kids.


Anonymous (December 1, 2003)

Jawbreaker is an emo band. At the Drive-In is an emo band. Cap'n Jazz is an emo band. DAG FUCKING NASTY is an emo band. All these other bands proclaiming themselves as "emo" (or are letting their labels promote the tag) --like Dashboard, Saves the Day, Taking Back Sunday and their ilk are the ones who aren't emo. Those of us who knew what it was before Spin Magazine christened Weezer an emo band know the difference.

notfeelingcreative (November 30, 2003)

Jawbreaker was not an emo band? Well, I guess I don't like any emo! Unless Jawbox was emo!

Anonymous (November 30, 2003)

shit i looove this band...i wonder if the lead singer will ever like boys so we can hook up, but until then ill keep masturbating to his photos..and and i love the cd..and the band name is sooo deep, its almost emo!..props guys stay off da hizzle

Anonymous (November 30, 2003)

I think Weezer was a emo band.

adam (November 30, 2003)

The only reason Jawbreaker get stuck with the emo tag is because after the fact, "emo" bands are claiming them as an influence. That dosen't re-classify them though.

Jawbreaker was a punk band, but they influenced the modern stuff we call emo. Weezer was a power pop band, and they influenced the sound as well.

However neither band ~was~ an emo band and I refuse to call them.


funkisdead (November 30, 2003)

jawbreaker are proto-emo.

adam (November 30, 2003)

"Ska isnt cheesy, its great music."

Give this man a prize. Ska only became cheezy when all the johnny-come-lately bands decided they needed to mimic Reel Big Fish's irony. Soon we had all these "stupid" joke ska bands out there. Ska music is fine right now, it's got a steady growth amonst bands that are seriously committed to it. It dosen't need to be "blowing up" to be considered alive.


Anonymous (November 30, 2003)

I like ska the way it is. Ska isnt cheesy, its great music.

adam (November 30, 2003)

God damn do I hate that classification. Jawbreaker was a punk band. Anyone who argues that "Jawbreaker was emo" in the modern sense of the word you should punch.


notfeelingcreative (November 30, 2003)

I'd take ska over emo any fuckin' day of the week, unless we're talking reel big fish versus jawbreaker or jawbox then i'm going with the emo!

SugeFuckingKnight (November 28, 2003)

I miss ska...sure it was cheasy but ska bands could drink and weren't total pussies like emo bands.

Greenvandal (November 28, 2003)

"4. What was their favorite thing to drink when recording? Rancid drank nothing but Diet Pepsi when recording their latest, and I thik it really shows.

5. If Andrew WK was drinking this, would he turn it off, or add a keyboard solo?

6. Why isn't there any Andrew W.K solos?"

Why is fucks name is no one noticing how fucking hilarious that is????

Bless you superdude, bless you!

notfeelingcreative (November 28, 2003)

I love the toasters. And yeah coolie is great. We met him at a mephiskapheles show, that the Pilfers were opening, he gave me a free CD and my girlfriend at the time a free hat! God, what a stupid story!

ilikebandssuchasopivy (November 27, 2003)

Oh please god let Streetlight Manifesto come to Toronto..

until then I'll look forward to a ska show that is going to come to toronto for sure.. gooo ska is dead tour : mustard plug, big d and the kids table, planet smashers and catch 22.

boo to the ya

Fuzzy (November 27, 2003)

The Kablaam! themesong was a version of Two Tone Army done by The Moon Ska All Stars or something. It's on one of the moon ska comps from 99 or so. Sigh. The day.

CallingLondon (November 27, 2003)

what's kablaam?

the toasters are incredible

Anonymous (November 27, 2003)

The Toasters didn't play the theme from kablaam. it was a slightly different version credited first to "moon ska," then in later episodes it was credited as performed by the Moon Stompers (I would assume buck was involved)

rxbandito24 (November 26, 2003)

Coolie ranx is the shit, especially on spring heeled jack's Man of Tomorrow

GregSka (November 26, 2003)

It looks like Streetlight Manifesto is going to start playing shows now, not too shabby

501 (November 26, 2003)

Rancid, diet pepsi.... oh jeez, this scores for that comment and this band

adam (November 26, 2003)

sickboi: yes. It's on here.


Anonymous (November 26, 2003)

Did the Toasters do "2 Tone Army"? I can't remember...


Anonymous (November 26, 2003)

If I'm correct, Toasting was when reggae DJ's would do a bit of talking/rapping/whatever over the tracks they played.

Anonymous (November 25, 2003)

the toasters rock. no question son.


Anonymous (November 25, 2003)

but the name has nothing to do with ovens. its about radio DJs in England or somthing like that...

cubaricho (November 25, 2003)

No, they'd just be called Toast.

superdude (November 25, 2003)

This review was pretty good, but here's how I would make it better:

1. Who doesn't like toast?

2. I love it!

3. If they break up and reform, would they be called the Toaster Ovens?

4. What was their favorite thing to drink when recording? Rancid drank nothing but Diet Pepsi when recording their latest, and I thik it really shows.

5. If Andrew WK was drinking this, would he turn it off, or add a keyboard solo?

6. Why isn't there any Andrew W.K solos?

7. Is there any mention of cats?

Anonymous (November 25, 2003)

i have all the albums so i won't get this, but yeah...what a great band!

GregSka (November 25, 2003)

Must have...

Anonymous (November 25, 2003)

This score is for my toaster! It takes like 10 fucking minutes to bake two Eggos!

Anonymous (November 25, 2003)

FUCK! "Mona"'s on there. Oh well...

Anonymous (November 25, 2003)

interesting that they left off ALL the material that Coolie Ranx sung on. Granted, he was only in the band for 2 albums, but it was some of the best stuff they recorded. I know he didn't leave on good terms, and here's further evidence... (unless the interpunk track listing is wrong, and track 7 is not "Dub" but "Dub 56")


Anonymous (November 25, 2003)

"Thereā??s no better introduction to the Toasters than this."

No, the best introduction to the Toasters was Kablaam! on Nickelodeon.

And I hate to see the record titled "In Retrospect" when the Toasters are still alive and playing music.

Anonymous (November 25, 2003)

Take your dick out of the toaster and quit crying bitches!

travis (November 25, 2003)

the toasters are such a fantastic live band. definitely one of my favorite ska bands to see live.

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