Exclusive Interviews Only Found Here at MetalCore!
Toxik was a killer NY thrash metal band that put 2 albums out on Roadracer
and they were recently reissued by Metal Mind Productions who put me in touch
with Tad Leger and I fired him off an email interview and here is what he said:
MC: Tad, this is Chris from Metal Core and we used to write to each other many years back. I hope all is well with you and what do you think of the re issues of the 2 albums you put out under Toxik. Are you surprised that after this many years that there is still enough interest in the band to have your 2 albums re-released??
TL: It''s flattering 4 sure,
considering the thousands of albums that have been released since then, but
metal fans have a great memory & some releases stay with you many years
after they have been gathering dust on your shelves.
It''s great that some people feel that way about the Toxik stuff.
MC: When Metal Mind contacted you about the reissues, what was your reaction?
TL: I couldn't believe that 2 different labels were reissuing the Toxik albums
in the same year!! I scrambled to hook them up with some cool unreleased stuff
& I tracked down some cool shit 4 'em!
MC: The bonus stuff on the 2 discs, how did you come to find this particular material?
TL: My best friend Chris Scarduzio kept an incredible amount of Toxik history. He had demos, rehearsals, even some radio interviews! I had a few tapes of rough mixes, so between us, we really had some great recordings.
MC: Looking back, do you think Roadracer could have done a better job promoting you and do you think that they really didn't know how to market your band properly?
TL: Hell no. The A&R people who signed Toxik were gone by the time World
Circus got released. We were not a priority to anyone at the label. The only
reason we got to play in Europe was Andre @ the Dynamo Open Air really believed
in the band. If it weren't for him, we NEVER would have played outside of the
US. Also we have to thank King Diamond for taking us out on tour. Without him,
we may have never played outside of NY ha!
MC: Do you think having a singer that could actually sing and hit the high notes helped or hurt the band as many thrash bands back in the day had a more aggressive style of singing?
TL: Both I think. Roadracer HATED the high pitched vocals & to be honest
I am not the biggest fan of them either as my tastes run on the more extreme
& underground side of music. However if we had a Hetfield style vocalist
perhaps it would have made Toxik sound a bit more generic?
MC: Who came up with your logo and the designs to your 2 album covers?
TL: A friend of ours Joe Vitorini designed the logo & I think it''s fucking
brilliant!!! The album art was done by the famous Ed Repaca of course. He kind
of defined the look of the 80--90s metal album art I think.
MC: Tell me what is was like playing the Dynamo fest back in 1988?
TL: One of the greatest days of my life for sure. Hanging out with Exodus &
smoking hash all day, then playing to 30,000 metal heads chanting "Tox--ik,
Tox--ik, Tox--ik"" It doesn't get much better than that!
MC: What led to the break up of the band?
TL: Big time musical & personal differences, that were almost unbearable
on the road. Plus we were all at a young & arrogant age, when it''s hard
to compromise in what you think is right when you''re at such an idealistic
MC: Tell me a bit about this new band your in and what do you think of the internet and all it's stuff and is there any Toxik fan websites out there?
TL: My current band Lucertola started as a solo project with me recording both
drums & guitar. I wanted to do something with the heavy doom of Sabbath
& Mercyful Fate, the tribal dissonance of Voivod & atmosphere of 70s
horror. Movies like Tombs of the Blind Dead, The Beyond & Suspiria.
MC: Have you gone on line at all on say EBAY and saw how much your old releases were selling for?
TL: Yeah, it was cool seeing some of the crazy bootlegged stuff on sale there
MC: Did you get to play Lamour's when the band was together and what are some highlights and low times of the band that you can remember?
TL: We got to to play Lamour's a couple of times, which the time was mind-blowing
4 me 2 thing I was on the same stage that Slayer & Possessed had been on.
Highlights were def going to Morrissound to record World Circus. We were having
our dreams come true & everyone at the studio was so cool to us. We got
to meet Nasty Savage & my friend Chuck (RIP) from Death came by to hang
out, totally killer. Low times were the second European tour. We were not getting
along at all & I remember just wanting out of the whole situation.
MC: Do you think with some of the newer material on album # 2 that some of the songs and stuff went over peoples heads so to speak and that might have hurt the band?
TL: I remember playing "Technical Arrogance" at a soundcheck for
our roadcrew right after we finished & they were like""uuuuuuuuuuhhhhhh,
I don''t know about that one" haha!! Some tracks on "Think This"
maybe were too technical for their own good but most of them are really cool
& very original.
MC: Are there any leftover songs that might see the light of day one day?
TL: There are a bunch on the Displeased reissues. Rehearsals & demos of
like 4 totally unreleased songs. I think some Toxik fans will really be psyched
to hear all this cool obscure shit!
MC: Do you still talk to any of the old band members and tell us a couple crazy road or band stories that you wouldn't mind sharing?
TL: We''ve all been back in touch since the reissues were announced & a reunion is in the works!! I won''t be able to join in though as I have too many commitments to work & my current band Lucertola. After a 4 year search for a vocalist my bud Jeff Shirilla from Abdullah will be doing vocals for our first release, so things are lining up at last.
MC: After the break up of Toxik what did you do and give us a little time line with what you did after the break up? Did you get asked to join any other bands and were you sad to see the band breakup?
TL: I was contacted by Lazz Rocket about doing something with them but that
didn't work out. I also tried out for Overkill which went really well but that
also feel through. Monte at Roadrunner called me & asked if I was interested
in playing with Kat, my answer was of course "No!!" but then they
offered me good money to play some of the tracks of "Beethoven on Speed".
Later I did a 2 week tour, which was also a decent check. Then I decided to
go back to college, as I needed to get some
skills & pay the fuckin rent! It was then I got an offer from Type O Negative
but was just not that into it to give up school. Around '92 I met a couple of
local guys who were doing some great raw old school thrash. It reminded me of
the early days of Venom & Kreator but with a serious dose of Sabbath. So
we started jamming & that became Blackened Sky which is my longest running
project 2 date. We recorded 2 demos & played a ton of shows around NY, Baltimore,
Virginia & DC. I created a 2 disc set of a show we played @ the 930 Club
in DC & both demos re mastered that's available on my website. I then started
up a band with a few friends that was a mix of Voivod & Bad Brain style
harcore called Jaws of Life for a few years but we broke up right after we recorded
our demo. After that I joined a band called Buzzmeg along with one of the guitarists
from Blackened Sky. The songs were in the style of COC, Prong & Masters
of Reality. Around 1999 Anthony the Bass player from Jaws & I put together
a band called Sons of Celluloid, which was a mix of 70s rock & dark thrash.
We were joined by a killer guitarist & Andy Eichorn from Prime Evil. We
recorded a four song demo then called it a day. Then I started working seriously
on just Lucertola.
MC: Will their be any Toxic merchandise released and/or a website?
TL: I think so, Brian bought Toxikmetal.com, where we will offering some merchandise soon.
MC: I know you have a website, what is the url and what will people see when they go on it?
My personal site is: www.tadleger.com,
for info on Lucertola you can go to www.myspace.com/lucertoladoom
MC: What would you like the band to be remembered by and what are your future plans?
TL: I hope Toxik will be remembered as a band that really cared about writing original & powerful music that could be enjoyed by more various types of metal fans.
MC: Any last words and Tony from Deadly Blessing says hi and yes they recently just back together?
Thanx 2 everyone who supported Toxik, Blackened Sky, Jaws of Life, Buzzmeg,
Sons of Celluloid & Lucertola. HAIL METAL!!