A Giant Dog is a garage rock band from Austin, Texas and “Toy” is their sixth release.
This is a wonderfully eccentric album with plenty of rock and roll guts to hold it all together. I have heard fans of A Giant Dog’s earlier albums bemoan that “Toy” is not as heavy, but I find myself thoroughly enjoying the quieter moments. That’s not to say that this is a smooth and sweet album, there are plenty of raucous bangers in the track listing, particularly in the second half of the album.
A Giant Dog have a lot going for them in the realm of uniqueness. The band’s use of accompanying instrumentation like horns and strings as well as some expertly interspersed synths keeps things interesting and the vocals are exaggerated, wild, and fun.
Speaking of fun, “Toy” is dripping with a great vibe that doesn’t take itself too seriously. The lyrics are tongue-in-cheek and explicit yet witty at times as well. Each song has a distinct character to it and there really isn’t a dull track on the record. It’s impressive how A Giant Dog managed to craft a pretty diverse set of songs that still maintain an obvious core sound and influence.
It really didn’t take long for this album to start sticking with me. A Giant Dog is a band with a lot of neat ideas and a fantastic sound. I will certainly be keeping my eyes and ears open for their next release.
Favorite songs: “Get Away”, “Lucky Ponderosa”, “Tongue Tied”, “Night Terror”
Check it out for yourself on A Giant Dog’s bandcamp here: