After the success of their first top secret pop up show with The Districts (RECAP HERE), Out Of Town Films will be hosting their second ‘pop-up’ this Wednesday(09/18) with Philly’s own Toy Soliders. For more info and to find out the super secret location and time of show you can email firstname.lastname@example.org. Contact now! Space is limited!
Words By Adrianna Hilborn – Photos by Adrianna Hilborn and Seth Klinger
The surprise performance will be filmed by Out Of Town Films for a handful of sessions that will be released in a few weeks. So if you’re free on Wednesday night, please do come hang out. We’d love to have you.
Friday night was Toy Soldiers’ night to shine for this hard working Philadelphia band. The Album Release Party at Johnny Brenda’s was a sold out show celebrating the release of their full-length album The Maybe Boys. Fans packed in to see one of Philly’s most talented rising bands take the next step in their musical career. The album is a good-time, rock and roll album with a heart of blues & soul. The Maybe Boys’ 12 tracks include touches of honky-tonk on “Heart In A Mousetrap” and New Orleans jazz on “This Old Town.” Toy Soldiers used a Kickstarter campaign to fund the release and promotion of this album, which was successfully funded by fans, friends and family. The full crowd included many of those same people that made the album possible. Also in attendance were members of Philly bands The Lawsuits and The Levee Drivers.
Opening the show was Boston band Kingsley Flood who brought their energetic Americana style rock to the stage. They played a set of foot-stomping tunes, complete with horns and violin. A comedian briefly entertained the crowd between bands, but with the growing crowd clamoring for more music, I doubt many people could hear the jokes.
When Toy Soldiers took the stage, they started with one of my new personal favorite tunes from the album, “Tomorrow to Today.” With that, I knew it would be a great show. The band sounded tight and looked like they were having a lot of fun on stage. After a few more songs, Ron Gallo thanked the crowd and everyone who helped make the album possible. At this point Gallo held up a copy of The Maybe Boys and dipped the corner into a cup of beer “baptizing” it, and blessing it for success. The crowd was packed in tight, but still found room to dance during the bouncy “Red Dress” and a cover of The Coasters’ “I’m a Hog for you Baby.” Even after a 2-song encore, the evening was over too soon.
Before the show, I was able to ask band members Dominic Billett and Ron Gallo a few questions about the new album.
Congratulations on the new album! How did it feel to have your Kickstarter campaign successfully funded?
DB: Incredible. At first, we were unsure of the concept since we have been working so hard to do this on our own. But in the end, it has been super humbling and inspiring to have so much support from our friends and family.
You have a big national tour planned through November. Does this tour feel any different now that you have the full album under your belt?
DB: We now have an album that we are truly proud of and which is a true representation of our band. No more handing out burned CDs of our music!
Now that the album is released and you’re getting airplay on WXPN, you also have a Daytrotter Session coming up, plus the tour… Do you feel like the band is on the verge of something big?
RG: Things are coming together, for sure. We feel like we are riding the wave of all that we have accomplished. I wouldn’t say we are on the verge of something big, but we are definitely taking steps in the right direction.
With that said, I wish Toy Soldiers much success with the album and beyond! If you’re not yet familiar with Toy Soldiers, check them out.
Photos by Adrianna Hilborn & Seth Klinger