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1991 1992 1993-94 1996-98 2001-02

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"Sonic Razor Blades"

Text: Sandra A. Garcia

(photo: Sandra C. Davis)

Enough of pretenders. It's time for a coup, time to crown a new queen for the nineties. Time to find a woman who speaks her mind, uses her talent and not only her sex to make the statement, and who aggressively handles the practical duties of making music without answering to others. A woman who mixes glamour with grounding, practical yet deserving of pop icon status. Someone to follow in the footsteps of Siouxsie Sioux, Chrissie Hynde, Deborah Harry, Danielle Dax and Patti Smith. Make your own list: this is my show. Our selection: Toni Halliday from Curve. To be fair, we'll crown Dean Garcia king for his formidable musical talents. And his fine name.

But wait, perhaps you've not experienced melting with Toni Halliday's slippery vocal seductions, or have had the honor of being pummeled by Dean Garcia's melodically sonic slaughters. I see, maybe you've been listening to pale pretenders to the throne like... oh, let's be kind and not cast rocks, but a host of pretenders both old and new are probably furiously studying Curve's musical moves to figure out how they do that amazin' do. Curve do what they do, then twist like a cat falling from a fifteen story building, landing on their feet with nary a sound to dash off the next precipice. They're more than good. They're an experience. They're tarnished glamour suffused with the hothouse lushness of jungle humidity without the suffocating effect. Subversively sexual without being gender specific, Curve arc over backwards without breaking into a sweat on the outside. But inside... that's where they get you and never let go.

You may think you don't like Curve. But don't dismiss until you've experienced two songs... 'Coast Is Clear' from the amazing Frozen EP and the stunning 'Split into Fractions' from their new LP. If you still don't get it, you never will. Toni's chilling voice following the guitar's screaming melodies should win 'Split' some type of award. I just don't know what for. I can't think straight after that song. And I love it when music does that to my head.

My first vivid impression of vocalist Toni Halliday came from watching her on the artist' panel at last year's CMJ awards, as a heated discussion erupted between the audience and Chuck D and Ice T. Toni's captivating face was becoming alarmingly transformed into a angry brittle mask of red lips and furious eyes. At one point she half stood, leaned forward, shook her head in disgust and then sat back down. "I was gonna respond in some way, but then I was going to get up and walk out," she describes as she curls on the couch in the Charisma offices. "Because I couldn't believe what they were saying... but then I thought that everyone might think it would be really," as she further widens her already expressive eyes. Toni says much with gestures and motions, a difficult feat to get across in print. "Ice T was going on about how beautiful women are just good to fuck and if a woman had gotten up and walked out I thought it would have gotten across in the wrong way. But I was just..." as she takes deep growling breaths, giving an angry little laugh. "I was very frightened cause it was the first time I had ever done anything like that. And afterwards you think if I had my time again, I would have just completely hammered into him. Both of them, Ice T and Chuck D, they're just disgusting. I mean..." as she falls silent in anger. "I don't know what it is, I just don't think what they said was good enough. And when that guy from the Village Voice got up, he really put Chuck D in his place, when he wanted to know the difference between the bigotry of racism and the bigotry of Flavor Flav's saying he hates all homosexuals. Chuck D was...'ah, errr,'" she delivers with satisfaction. "Then he's 'oh, I don't think you should take it so seriously...' What the fuck is he talking about? Public Enemy are one of the most important bands that have happened in the last twenty years. I really love their records. But I was shocked cause I didn't realise how far down the line it is with this kind of segregation from integration issue. Most sensible people realise that integration is the only thing that's going to work. They just really made me frightened. And then when it started to expand into sexism, racist, homophobic shit... that's scary.

Toni reflects further, realising, "Chuck D and Ice T were the only two people who didn't talk about music. They only talked about money. And I thought talking about music was the whole point. I was just so shocked, they're talking about shifting millions of units each week: it's all units this and money that... and I thought 'isn't there some really weird ingredient missing here?'" she laughs with another shake of her hair.

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(photo: Michele Taylor) My second impression of Toni Halliday? A no-nonsense, articulate woman who speaks her mind, who while having been involved in the music business for some years is still full of that playful, passionate love of music. When she kissed Adam Franklin of Swervedriver's photo in our magazine I knew she was still in touch with the sheer joy of being a fan. Toni's also a woman who can make an old grey t-shirt and black jeans into a statement of casual glamour without even trying. She's got that special gift. Mere mortals must merely sit back and sigh.

Other bands should sit back and take note of how Toni and Dean have created Curve into a realised musical dream: a loud, intense world formed from voluptuous vocals, hammering music loaded with killer feedback and blindsides of sultry sound. And lo, for once something special got thrown into the public eye without it being blinked out before people realised it was special. They crashed into being via their self-produced, self-promoted EP Blindfold, sending the British press drooling from the start. The duo responded with initial interviews that went far beyond the normal honesty level. For a band to display such open candour right from the start was both refreshing and dangerous. "Right from the beginning Dean and I said if somebody asks us something, we're not going to put forth information for people, but if they ask us something directly we're going to tell them the truth. We just decided to do that, cause then nobody's got anything on us, she grins. "We just didn't want to get into that 'can't remember what we said three years ago' thing. Which obviously you do cause things keep changing and you're travelling more and experiencing more. Your views either open up or close down. Obviously you progress and your opinions do change. So just maintain a balance and be truthful. I mean people say, 'so what are you gonna talk about next, you've told everybody everything.' And I say 'I've told them fucking nothing, I've only told them things that I've come to terms with'!" she laughs protectively. "I've not told them anything that I really feel about now. I'll say that it really doesn't bother me that my parents got a divorce, it's been years ago. I've come to terms with it. And it doesn't matter that Dean's illegitimate, and that his mother tried to get rid of him before he was born: he's come to terms with that. If he can deal with it then so can everybody else."

It's the best form of self defence there is: tell the truth and you'll have no worries. Toni sighs, "The destruction comes anyway. The reason there's so many problems in the world is because people don't tell the truth. They don't actually say what they really think, or see what's really been going on. Like child abuse, people say 'oh, it's just rife, it's blown up over night!' It's just that no one ever talked about it! It's been going on from the beginning of time, people have always been abused. It's just that no one talked about it, and when people decide it's ok you get this flood coming in. And people go 'oh, it's an epidemic!'"

Curve's success can also be called epidemic. But the practical Toni certainly isn't egotistical about it. "There's lots of elements involved. Not that I would presume to know what they are but... I am sure luck's one of them. I know too many talented people who haven't got record deals. I see too many people who have made it without talent. It's not just talent. To have a long career, and outstanding career, it does really come down to whether you can write a song or not. That is the crunch point. I am not putting talent down in any way but I think what really propels things up are different areas like luck, timing, like Nirvana. Ok, they could have sold five hundred thousand, the record company could have done a few things to bounce it about a bit, shifted things a bit. But there's a whole fuckin' generation of people waiting to buy this record. It was just the right time, and it just broke. There was a generation that had been ignored by other areas of music. And they just found themselves in their music. That's why their video is so brilliant. It's just a total reflection of what's going on. And I just love documentation music. Like the Primal Scream record documented exactly what was going on in London at that time, and the Stones used to do that. I don't know where bands are going to be in five years time, but the thing is they've made this totally relevant record, and it will be there for all time. It will never lose it. It will always be there."

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(photo: Sandra C. Davis) People were obviously waiting for Curve judging from the descriptions of Curve's live performances. They've done a few tours of Britain but here in the US we must wait until June to experience this reportedly incredible performance. Reading the reviews made one immediately suspicious of the band: surely they really can't be that amazing? Lines like "The songs, ten of them, are so good it's almost criminal to remember what order they come in. That they happen at all is more then enough, more then we deserve," (MM 5/25/91) , are a mere drop in the sea of praise washing over Curve for their performances. So Toni, does it really feel that amazing onstage? She doesn't disappoint me, delivering "No!" with a hearty laugh and a shrug.

Well, now that we've deflated that notion... Toni's still laughing as she describes, "Dean usually paces, a half an hour before the show he's pacing, and it rubs off on everybody, and we all start fidgeting, and he's sweating, and rubbing his hands, and we all get really, really nervous. I mean I think there's only been one show, just before Christmas, at the Astoria in London, and there were 2500 people there, totally packed. We walked on stage and it just felt 'yes, ok,'" as she clenches her fist. "But that was the first time. Before I went on I was like this," she grinds her slim hands together pathetically, "but the minute I walked on stage I felt yeah, alright, I've got them now! ' It's funny cause I see things like with Guns 'n Roses, they have those shots into the audience, there's a hundred thousand people there... and just looking at it makes my stomach go..." as she rapidly goes into hyperventilation. "I could never see us doing that! But for the first time after that gig I thought 'I can fuckin' do anything!' I felt like I had accomplished something, I had progressed from the beginning. I don't know how we got there, I was so stiff and...," more hyperventilation follows I as she collapses into laughter, "I was literally shaking! I couldn't stop my voice from wobbling... there was real fear. But Dean explains that you just keep stepping up and up and if you ever do get there you are ready for it. And I would say 'never!' I would have bad dreams about it, like I'd get up there and not be able to move, nothing would come out of my mouth, real paranoid type of things. But he was right, and now I feel a sense of achievement. I could actually end up being quite a good performer, which I never really thought I would." Toni is so expressive just talking about her music I can't imagine that in a live situation she could be anything less then spectacular.

She may have stage fright but she doesn't have vertigo, judging from her ability to perch on the sill of an open window twenty stories above a busy Manhattan street just for her photo. No wonder Toni can take the dizzying heights of success! Toni does point out, "Live it's just there. It's exposed, everything's taken away. If you're not good... one mistake... they're just waiting for us to make one mistake and then boom!" she grimaces.

Curve had a simple trick to cover the nerves on that initial tour: they built up such a smokescreen onstage that no one could see them be nervous. "For five songs! Everyone was desperate to see what we looked like and we didn't show... it was like," as she plays peek-a boo, "then gone! I could really use that due to my fear of being onstage. I could lose myself, get my composure, take a deep breath and go back into it. We still use tons of it! It catches in your throat and sometimes you think 'now how am I gonna sing the next note, I can't!'"

Being that the album's title is the rather spooky Doppelgänger, that intense horror movie dry ice feel should still work well for the band. Toni grins, "It's funny cause we just completed press in Germany and first question was why did you call it Doppelgänger cause it's a German word. Obviously when we named it we never thought about that. You think 'well, this sounds properly exotic and I like to say it!' We chose it for the duality of the word, and I and Dean loved the spookiness of it. And the idea of a Doppelgänger and breathing life into clay and we were into the idea of breathing life into vinyl, so there were lots of reasons. But to them it was like a common, every day word. Doppel means double. So like a double decker sandwich would be a doppel whatever!" she giggles. "Even on menus! Dopple sale... to the Germans it was so what!" she laughs.

As long as they don't think the music within is so what. The Europeans don't think Curve live is so what either. Toni notes that Curve uses their live experience to a new advantage, now that they're past those hyperventilation episodes. "We expand on the atmosphere to it. We're not interested in doing identikit things. Live I just want us to be the loudest band in the world, Dean wants us to be the most intense band in the world, he's into sending razor blades out and slashing people's heads off with sonics. He has this funny dip in his hearing, like a 3K dip in his hearing. So sometimes he'll say to me 'come down, hear this, I've got this brilliant guitar sound,' and this thing would come on and it'd be.." as she imitates this loud whooshing sound, "and in the background you can hear this 'ding, ding, ding.' So he's into sending these high powered sounds, and the brilliant thing about it is it's more uncontrolled to uncontained.. Dean just has to have this thing coming out of the speakers, what he calls our razor blades, and we're in control of the volume and you've got all these people contained in this one area and you just go... waaauuggghhhh! " as she manically thrusts her arms forward. "And they can't move, cause all our gigs are totally packed in England, and they're like this," she now looking panicked, "but they can't get away! They get up onstage to get away from it, we get tons and tons of stage divers, people who want to interact with the gig. We deal with a lot of that, but we like it. We never play with pits, cause the gig isn't for photographers. It's for the people who pay the money to come in to see you. I like them to be there, cause I can lean down to them. They're always talking to you, they give you reaction, and you get something off of them and they give you something back. It's a reaction. And also they can't get out!" she grins evilly. With their spiralling success in Britain and Europe Curve are now no stranger to large venues, but after a festival with Nirvana Toni sadly realised that you seriously lose something in a huge atmosphere. "I was up there and I was really working my fuckin' ass off with this enormous stage. I was shaking my little tush, going 'c'mon then' and I realised then that even if I make a move like this," she waving her arms wildly, "it just wasn't big enough. I'm right up there leaning into the pit, just trying to get to them. I felt like I had lost contact. I just can't bear that. You can't get any reaction back, you can't gauge anything!"

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(photo: Sandra C. Davis)

Even Dean's razor blades couldn't slash the distance. Toni further describes Dean's hearing threshold, noting that if he's digging a sound your ears are going to shut off from the noise to protect the ear drum. No wonder Curve sounds like there's a million different noises going on at once: there probably are, and being mere mortals we just can't stand them all at once. And those same intense feelings first formed on their EP's extends into the new album, which Toni accurately describes as an, "Onslaught. Dean's just so intensely interested in the coloration of sounds that he just experiments wildly, he just goes off. He'll be down there for hours. And he's got a low boredom threshold, if something doesn't work in ten minutes it's like 'next!' So in the course of the day you could hear twenty things. His mind just works at a high turnover rate."

For all those glorious songs on the EP's only a reworking of 'Clipped' made it to Doppelgänger. Other bands would have relied on patching their EP's together for their first album. Not the confident Curve. "We thought we could make a good album as well. We're not saying that this will go on forever. It's just at the moment we feel really prolific, we feel very up. We've been given a massive boost of confidence with the reaction to the records from the start. Your confidence level goes really up, your writing... sometimes it can go a bit negative and you can get a bit paranoid about it... it can suddenly become a pressure. We went through a bit of..." as she looks anxious. "We'd be lying if we said that didn't happen. But we said 'this can't happen,' and we have to use this positively cause we're going to get into some serious areas if we let this happen. We decided to turn it around and use it as a way of going 'we can do this!' By using that we made the third EP and then the album.

"It all started with the first record. It was accepted so amazingly, I've never seen anything like that. But then it was 'so what are they gonna do next?'" she shudders.

Still, the band does like to hold onto what Toni refers to as "magic moments," like when their friend rapper JC 001 came over one day and they invited him to add to their first single. "He just ad libbed, completely off the top of his head, and it was one take. And it sounded so brilliant, the right place at the right time. Sometimes these things just happen, and they happen really well. And because the studio's in my flat, you invite people around, and it's like 'well, let's have a go!' and they go down and do their thing. So when we did the next record, people were like 'oh, what are they gonna do? What kind of weird hybrid are they gonna do?' They didn't get the fact that it was just one of those special moments that we just managed to get on tape. We kinda knocked that one on the head. We didn't want to be known as a novelty band!" she laughs dismissively.

Toni and Dean were able to handle their sudden success in Britain with relative grace, treating their situation with respect mixed with sheer excitement. Toni acknowledges, "I think it helped us being a bit older, really. Even though we weren't prepared, we weren't expecting anything, I think mentally we were actually quite ready for it. And we'd been through some disastrous situations and it really was invariable. That's why I never really have any regrets about anything. People say 'why, aren't you embarrassed about your past?' and I go 'no, why should I be?' Whatever I've done has given me a brilliant service. On the first record I made I learned about songs, learned how to write songs. I learned about pop structures, and I've always been really intensely interested about that. And then with the band that Dean and I were in before Curve, I learned how to engineer, we engineer virtually all of our own records now, we produce them... we learned all these things that are just totally invaluable. We wouldn't be where we are now if we hadn't learned these things. It's completely obvious. But people go 'hmmmm' and I go 'oh God, get a life!"' she mockingly snaps. "People have to go through so many different permutations to finally get the right configuration. And it just locks and you go 'right!' And that's it. I mean you can call us slow, I guess, but eventually we did get to the point where we fucking made a record that we love," she grins in triumph.

(photo: Sandra C. Davis) As usual the press tried to rip them down: the ugly backlash kicked in after their initial EP's as the accusations flew that Curve were "contrived." So what if they're not 19 and busy staring at their shoes. Curve's busy getting in your face. "We've had a past!" gasps Toni with theatrical horror. "When you actually look up in the dictionary what contrived means, the actual word is about being in control of the situation. But if we're so contrived, I think it's pretty contrived when you're 18 years old, you've just entered college and want to be in a band. So you put on a scraggly sweater and you go out and buy a guitar and stick it into a really old amp... that's pretty contrived! That's more contrived then having a life!" she declares acidly. "I think if there's one thing that makes us slightly different, it's that. People ask us quite a lot 'why are you different?' I think it's just that slight age thing, and the different things that we've been through and all the experiments that we've made in the past. We know what we don't want: we don't necessarily know what we want but we do know what we don't want!" she laughs with a shrug.

But there are still those in the underground sector who become almost hysterical at seeing their indie heroes become successes. As long as the music doesn't suffer from evil manipulations, why shouldn't a band take it as far as they can go? Toni definitely agrees, noting, "But you get that about alternative music. People are very precious about it, the fans, it's theirs, it's the only thing that is theirs, it's not their parents, it's not Joe Public's music, it's theirs. But obviously I don't agree with that cause I think more music should be heard. Then let people make their choices, whether you buy it or not, whether you switch channels or not. You don't have to listen to it if you don't want to..."

But the faithful who didn't hold with any of that contrived nonsense held their breath for the release of Curve's first album. And going into Doppelgänger after that streak of successful singles must have been... "Easy... it was so easy," Toni laughs almost in embarrassment. And what also made going into 'the studio easier was working with Flood, who has been a close personal friend of Toni's for six years. "He's totally wonderful. Absolutely everyone he's worked with he's had a close personal relationship with. You look for trust. It's really such a frightening situation, we're down in the basement, we're down there for almost six weeks writing, because we don't demo: we start writing the song, and the moment we like it we start putting it on the tape. It goes on a half inch sixteen track, so it's all demos basically. And then we just transfer.

"With Flood, we were down there, working at this pace, really quick. We had taken the tracks up to 75% of full production on our own. And we got to the point where we just didn't know what else to put on them. And then you need somebody else to come in, fresh, completely objective of the situation, not involved. So he comes in and goes 'that's shit' or 'Oh, I really like that.' The funny thing is he came down on the day and we literally had to mix it while he was sitting in the room. Each track just went onto the next, and of course there's those 15 songs you're not gonna use that you have to weed through. We were literally shaking, thinking 'what the hell is gonna come up here?' And I've known him for so long I know how he'll react to music. I've never seen a reaction like that from anybody: he was like 'great, great!' And the week before he had just finished U2, which had taken a year out of his life, and he was desperate for something new, vibey and quick! He was really ready for a now, now, now," as she strikes her fist down with each word, "here we go! He and Dean hit it off immediately, cause they hadn't met before. It was like they knew each other from another life and they just locked like this! You couldn't stop them from talking!" she laughs. "They just got on so well it really made the album. The most difficult thing about production is that last 25%, which is just those little things, just funny little atmospheric sounds or little embellishments, but instead of it just being good it makes it great! And it really just finishes it off and you go 'wow! I never thought it could do that!'" she exclaims with wide eyed delight. "It's just brilliant."

And woe to spineless bands who whine about what the producer did to them. Toni has no time for their failings, disgustedly snapping, "That's bollocks! It is. You can't hand over your life to just anybody. That's your responsibility! It's so easy... that's one thing we also decided as well, we're never going to throw off the blame. If something goes wrong, it's going to be our fault, because we made the decision. We don't let anybody make decisions for us at all, about anything. It sounds terrible, like we're real control freaks but we are! We really are!" she laughs. Never fear, I'm discovering control freaks make the best music. "Because we don't want to be turning around saying 'oh, it's our managers fault cause he told us to do that! It's his fault!' It's not his fuckin' fault! He says 'do you wanna do this?' and we make that decision. If it's a wrong decision then we've made it and we have to learn by that. All bands have to live and die by their own rules, there are no two ways about it. It's an important lesson that we learned, obviously, because of that last band. And people just start," her voice now dropping to a low sneer, "v'oh, here's a little bit of input, I think you should be doing this, you should be doing that,' and you start going 'oh, maybe they're right!' And now we just go no! I'm not going to go round pointing fingers at people. It irritates me when people start going 'well, it was like this before the producer got a hold to it.' Fucking hell! Get it right! No record company on this planet can force you to go into the studio with somebody you don't want to! The record company should just be there to sell the fucking records! You've got the idea, if they had the ideas then they wouldn't need you! They'd make their own records!" she laughs in derision. Toni should seriously consider taking up law if she has any spare time.

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(photo: Michele Taylor) First Toni admits that doing the album was easy, so when I ask about getting a proper band together she grins, "You're not going to believe this! Getting the band together seemed too easy too." Maybe these two are finally leading a charmed life. Their percussionist, Monti, is a friend of Dean's from their meeting in a seedy "red-light" rehearsal space. "So when Curve came up I said 'why don't we get Monti into it?' So Dean rang him up and he said 'yeah, I'd love to be in a band!' He was on!

"And then Debbie and Alex, we had put an advert in the Melody Maker and I said, 'Dean, we're going to be here three weeks, I just know it, it's going to be audition after audition.' The first day we had people coming every half hour, and we found Debbie and Alex on the first day! And it wasn't just about how they played, it was their personalities mainly, because at that point it was into the back of the transit and up and down the motorways. And you're stuck with these people and if you don't get on with them, and they hadn't got these great attitudes... we were adamant we didn't want these people who would be going 'where's my money, I hate this hotel,' and you could be anybody who's paying their mortgage. You want people with a great love of music. This year we're gonna tour for eight months! Twenty five dates in Britain, three days off, right into Europe, America for dates, into Australia, Japan, back into Europe and into America for a second time! We're going to spend serious amounts of time with these people!" she laughs with a mocking groan. "We want people we could become friends with."

In their new guitarists Dean and Toni found their fiery musical matches. "When Alex and Debbie joined they were 21 years old, and they're like 'c'mon then!'" she half yells. "Debbie, she's amazing! She's jumping all over the place, she gets the guitar and the mike stand and..." as Toni demonstrates an accurate portrayal of pummelling a mike stand. She further describes that Debbie ripped the strings from her guitar in a fit of rage when the sound turned sour during one gig. "I was like 'Do you wanna be the front woman?' That was something brilliant! She's this skinny little thing and she's like, 'waughh!' She was really serious!" Toni laughs.

For all the exciting energy of Curve, there's always the danger that a gruelling world tour might totally drain the members. Again the practical Toni has already made plans to keep her mind occupied. "We're going to take a little portastudio with, that we can run off a little power pack. So we can write on tour. I get loads and loads of ideas, because you always have so much time to fill!"

So many artists feel exactly the opposite, complaining that there's no way they can create while on the road! Toni shakes her head in disagreement, exclaiming, "I got loads of lyrics for the next album from being on tour! In a day, when you're travelling in the bus, there's just so much time, and you're just looking out the window and get ideas. And I gets tons and tons! They're just bits really, they're not complete songs, I never write like that, I just write tag lines really, things that just pop into my mind and I'll go 'mmm, that's good!' and things come to mind. Or a melody will come to mind, and it's a real shame when you're so far away from home and you can't get it down! And by time you get home you've forgotten it. And you've lost that melody, and lots of times it's lost forever. And it could be.. the ONE!" she gasps in mocking dismay, "the one you'll never achieve! It could be something in a dream and it's the best melody that's ever happened. And you're never gonna remember it and you just want to wake up from that dream and just write it down! If you could only translate the things in your mind... I'm waiting for the day when you can just get this MIDI connector and plug it into the side of your head and just get the things inside!"

When you find one let me know! As far as the other cliché on the road activities, the older and wiser Toni and Dean know better then that. Not that they act like somebody's parents, just like sensible, sleep loving people. "The other three do, as they're all free and single, and they're into going out every night and partying. Dean and I are but after about a week... no more! Your body feels like a sewer from the inside out! And you just feel really dreadful. I think it's from staying in hotels, your respiratory system just goes. The mental illness comes later," she knowingly laughs. "But you're heading for destruction after a week going out after every gig. Then we just like to go down and talk to the fans, then it's just back to the hotel to take the bath and the rest of the night off. But you would think we'd sleep... I know Dean will still be up at four in the morning working... he'll be like 'hey, come in here, I've got these great ideas!'" she laughs. "You might come back with a pile of shit but let's have a go!"

And with touring comes the leeches who magnetically adhere to the backstage area the second the show's over with the promoter's second cousin in tow. Here's a warning: Toni doesn't appreciate people who don't respect the fact that they've just come offstage and they need that adjustment downtime. "It's just so completely different for the band because of that level... you are really, really up there. Just one person can be like 'I really didn't like the sound' and you just go like this!" as she imitates a horrendous crash. A real sixteen car pile up! "You feel like you've just done something really great, you've made this big leap, this massive transition and they can just come and knock you out that like. I don't like that," she snarls. "I don't mind after I've calmed down, I'll talk to people, that's fine. But then again that never happens with fans, it's always the record company people. Fans, never, they're always at the backstage door being really great making you feel really good."

Toni truly appreciates dedicated fans who find Curve the ultimate fascination. "It's nice actually, aside from people getting totally hysterical. It's nice to see in people's eyes that you've really sent them somewhere. That you can send somebody, that you've really touched them, that is the glory. It can be such a glorious feeling. That's the pocket of inspiration, pockets of glory, pockets of dignity and pride. They're very far and few and there's a lot of hard work in-between all that just to hit that.

"But when you hit that, it's just like 'wow!' and this head rush happens, it's really wonderful. It sends shivers up your spine, you get goosebumps, all these things happen to your head and it's just so wonderful. And that's the thing that keeps you going all the time. Those pockets. You never know when it's going to happen or if it's going to happen again! But when they hit it's like 'oh, now I remember why I'm in this! This is it!'"

And that's what Curve's music can do for you. A pocket of glory messing with your head and your heart. Like trying to look up a word in the dictionary when you can't spell it, Curve's music does impossible tricks to the ears. Pretenders to the throne, back down: the king and queen of razor blades are here.

There's still danger in the notes. And thank Curve for that.

(article nicked from 'B Side', June/July 1992)

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