Toad the Wet Sprocket is an American alternative-rock band which consists of singer Glen Phillips, guitarist Todd Nichols, bassist Dean Dinning, and drummer Josh Daubin. The band enjoyed chart success in the 1990s with singles including "Walk on the Ocean", "All I Want", "Something's Always Wrong", and "Fall Down". The band broke up in 1998 to pursue other projects but in 2006 began touring the United States again in small-venue, short-run tours. In December 2010, the band announced their official reunion as a full-time working band and started writing songs for their first studio album of new material since their 1997 Columbia Records release, Coil. Their most recent full-length album, Starting Now, was released on August 27, 2021.
Toad the Wet Sprocket was formed in 1986 at San Marcos High School just outside of Santa Barbara, California, when singer-songwriter Glen Phillips was just a 14-year-old freshman, and the other members were 17-year-old juniors. The band drew its name from the Eric Idle monologue "Rock Notes" on Monty Python's Contractual Obligation Album from 1980. Their first public appearance was at an open-microphone talent contest in September 1986 (which they lost).
Toad the Wet Sprocket's first album came out in 1989. Named Bread and Circus, it was their first effort for Columbia Records, who had signed them out of high school. The album spawned the singles "Way Away" and "One Little Girl," which made the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart, but did not receive much attention.
The follow-up, Pale, was released in 1990 and saw their sound mature. Featuring the singles "Jam" and the Modern Rock Chart hit "Come Back Down," the album was still not a massive success.
The band finally achieved fame with their third album, Fear (released in 1991), which became the band's first RIAA certified platinum album. Also, the singles "All I Want" and "Walk on the Ocean" reached the top twenty on the Billboard Hot 100.
In 1994, after years of heavy touring, the band released their follow-up to Fear, Dulcinea. This album spawned the hit singles "Fall Down", which reached #1 on the US Modern Rock charts as well as #5 on the Mainstream Rock chart, as well as "Something's Always Wrong", which also charted. This album was also certified platinum by the RIAA.
A compilation album of b-sides and rarities, In Light Syrup, was released in 1995; it included the single "Good Intentions", which was featured on the soundtrack for the television show Friends. Largely due to the strength of the single, this compilation was certified as a gold album in 2001.
The release of Coil in 1997 acted much like a follow up to 1994's Dulcinea. Featuring a more electric, rock sound, it contained the Modern Rock and Mainstream Rock hit "Come Down", as well as the radio hit "Crazy Life" (which did not chart). The album, despite the success of "Come Down" as a single, failed to reach any sales benchmarks.
Toad the Wet Sprocket formally broke up in July 1998, citing creative differences. Since breaking up, the band performed together in 2002 at a Rape Crisis Center benefit and opened up for Counting Crows. In 2006 they began touring the United States as a band in small-venue, short-run tours each summer.
In 2009, bassist Dean Dinning said Toad the Wet Sprocket was now something each member considered an active project, and though they had not released a new studio album since 1997 and only did small summer tours, they no longer considered themselves "broken up". In May 2010, the band gathered at a California studio to begin re-recording some of their older hits for licensing reasons. Columbia Records owns the masters to the band's albums. Therefore, the band makes little money from them, so to be able to make a living off their own talent again, they made these re-recordings with the goal of having them used in film and TV.
On December 7, 2010, Toad the Wet Sprocket released their first new studio track in 11 years. The holiday track "It Doesn't Feel Like Christmas", a cover of a Sam Phillips original, was posted on their official site, available via Bandcamp, for free download just in time for the holidays, along with a new message on their site: "We're that band that did 'Walk on the Ocean', 'All I Want', 'Something's Always Wrong', and "Fall Down'. The one with the weird name. We're back from a long slumber and look forward to saying hello some time. Keep in touch…" The band had recently signed a deal with Primary Wave to handle their back catalog and any future releases, and on December 11, 2010, the band mentioned, both on stage and in an offstage YouTube interview, that they are currently writing songs for their first new studio album since 1997's Coil. In addition, they began playing two new songs, "Friendly Fire" and "The Moment", which were being worked on for the new album.
On April 12, 2011, Toad the Wet Sprocket released a new greatest hits album titled All You Want in digital and disc form via their official website. The 11-track CD includes brand new studio versions of their hits. The band does not have access to some of the versions they did for Columbia Records in the '90s. However, they did regain full control of the songs from their first two albums, and they planned to re-release them in remastered form on their own label, Abe's Records, following the release of their upcoming studio album.
On March 22, 2013, it was announced via Toad the Wet Sprocket's Facebook page that recording of the new album had been completed. The album was produced and mixed by Mikal Blue at Revolver Studios in Thousand Oaks, California. On June 5, 2013, the band announced the first new single in 16 years on Rolling Stone's website titled "New Constellation". An album of the same name was released on the band's own Abe's Records on October 15, 2013. The band marketed the new album via the crowdsourcing website Kickstarter. The band initially set a fundraising goal of $50,000, expecting it to take about two months to raise that amount. Instead, fans contributed more than $50,000 in less than 20 hours. When the Kickstarter campaign finally came to a close, they had raised a total of $264,762.
In 2014, Toad the Wet Sprocket resumed touring and opened a number of shows for Counting Crows. They showcased some of the new material from New Constellation, the Kickstarter-funded album, including "California Wasted" and the album's title track while playing a number of their earlier hits. During summer 2015, the band went on tour with fellow '90s acts Smash Mouth and Tonic. The band released an EP called Architect of the Ruin on June 16, 2015.
In 2018, Toad the Wet Sprocket announced that they had reissued their albums fear and Dulcinea on a deluxe remastered vinyl LP available through their online store. The same year, they also released a limited deluxe 5-LP box set of colored vinyl for their albums fear, Dulcinea and Acoustic Dance Party.
In a January 2020 interview with ChicagoNow, Glen Phillips stated that "Toad has started recording again." In addition, he confirmed the band's first official lineup change, and that drummer Guss had left the band on good terms. Previous occasional touring member Josh Daubin replaced Guss.
On September 25, 2020, they released a new song entitled “Starting Now”, followed by another new song "Old Habits Die Hard" on October 23rd, from their upcoming album, set to be released in 2021.
There's another band with the same name:
2. Toad The Wet Sprocket was an NWOBHM (New Wave of British Heavy Metal) band active from the mid-70s to 1982. They released two singles, "Pete's Punk Song" and "Reaching the Sky", before their breakup. Their song, "Blues in A", was included on Metal for Muthas compilation (1980). User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply.