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Hell Below / Stars Above

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Album Review

After a six-year hiatus, the Toadies finally released their second album, Hell Below/Stars Above, in 2001. If 1995's Rubberneck was a pretty heavy album, with guitars swimming in a post-grunge murk, Hell Below/Stars Above finds the band trudging through primeval sludge, awakening the ghosts of heavy metal past. Songs like "Little Sin" evoke hard rock deities Soundgarden, and throughout the release, lead singer Todd Lewis adds plenty of Robert Plant/ Chris Cornell-style high-pitched syllables to counterpoint the "Hammer of the Gods" rhythm section bassist Lisa Umbarger and drummer Mark Rezinek endow the album with. Besides "Little Sin," highlights are the adrenaline rush "What We Have We Steal" and the requisite pseudo-ballad "Jigsaw Girl." Hell Below/Stars Above isn't all that original, but it's nirvana to some headbangers in an era when rap-metal was the only metal played on the radio.

Customer Reviews

Catchy rock that's not Pop-punk

This album is extremely catchy and still maintains its edge. For all post-grunge fans of the now extinct alternative rock music of the late 90's and early 2000's this album, as well as its predecessor "Rubberneck", are a must-have. I recommend getting the entire album instead of just one or two songs. There isn't one song on this album that sticks out more than the others, but that is because they are all that good. My only complaint is that the ending of Hell Below/Stars Above seems to drag on for a little too long, but the fast past rollercoaster that the song takes its listener on in the beginning of the song is worth it.


This cd is hard rock! A little different than rubberneck but it still has that ability to rock your pants off. Buy it. See them live!

One of My Favorites

This is really one of the most under-rated albums of all time.


Formed: 1989 in Fort Worth, TX

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Best known as the creators of the 1995 grunge staple "Possum Kingdom," the Toadies formed in 1989 and spent their infancy playing shows in Fort Worth, Texas. Musicians cycled in and out of the Toadies lineup from the very start, and the group soon became the domain of frontman Todd Lewis, a Pixies-influenced musician who wrote and produced the band's early releases. After issuing a series of homemade tapes and bringing drummer Mark Reznicek into the fold, the band released a proper EP, Pleather,...
Full Bio
Hell Below / Stars Above, Toadies
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Customer Ratings