Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Toe Fat

The Gods (who included future Uriah Heep members Ken Hensley and Lee Kerslake) replaced bassist John Glascock with Cliff Bennett and re-formed briefly as Toe Fat. Their eponymous debut appeared in July 1970, by which time Hensley and Heep had already released their first album. And that was the end of that

Toe Fat was an English rock music band active from June 1969 to 1971, notable for including two future members of Uriah Heep.

Formed in June 1969, the band was fronted by former Rebel Rouser Cliff Bennett and in the course of its two-year, two-LP career, featured lead guitarist Ken Hensley, guitarist/bassist Joe Konas, drummer Lee Kerslake, and replacements (after the first LP) John Glascock (bass), Brian Glascock (drums), Alan Kendall (guitar).

The band was founded by Bennett, a former pop star, after the dissolution of the Cliff Bennett Band. He teamed with former Gods keyboard player Hensley, who drafted in fellow ex-Gods members Kerslake and Glascock. The name was decided over dinner when Bennett and his manager attempted to create the most disgusting band name possible.

Toe Fat was quickly signed by Motown's progressive rock label, Rare Earth in the US. In Britain, the band signed with EMI, who released their first album on the Parlophone label and the second on Regal Zonophone.

The eponymously titled first album flopped commercially, but gained considerable critical praise. Such was their stir that after their first single "Workin' Nights" (the B-side was an early Elton John composition "Bad Side of the Moon") they were booked for a tour supporting Derek and the Dominos in the US. The album was also notable for its cover designed by the recently formed graphic art company Hipgnosis, who went on to do most of the covers for Pink Floyd. The cover shows a man on a beach with the head of a toe superimposed. On the U.K. release, a topless woman is shown in the background with the same head that was erased for the U.S. release.

Hensley quit the band to form the successful Uriah Heep (Bennett himself admitted in the sleeve notes of his re-released Rebellion album that he "probably should have joined them" when asked). Kerslake left to join the National Head Band before also joining Uriah Heep in 1971. Bassist Konas was replaced in the down time between records, with John Glascock (also formerly of The Gods and who later joined Jethro Tull) replacing him. Another ex-Gods man, Brian Glascock, became the new drummer. Alan Kendall replaced Hensley, adding more heavy licks to the new record, simply titled Toe Fat Two.

Jonathan Peel (not the D.J.) produced Toe Fat 2 after hearing them on several BBC radio sessions, including one for Terry Wogan! However, the new LP also flopped, despite more radio play, and a reasonably successful US tour promoting it. Following these successive failures, their management and labels informed the group that they could no longer fund them. Toe Fat dissolved while showing great promise, with Bennett later insisting things were starting to happen for the group.

Bennett recorded an ill-fated solo album, Rebellion, before quitting music to become a shipping magnate. Bennett still occasionally tours with the Rebel Rousers.

Alan Kendall and Brian Glascock went on to play with and write for the Bee Gees


1 That's My Love for You 4:02
2 Bad Side of the Moon 3:25
3 Nobody 6:05
4 The Wherefors and the Whys 3:44
5 But I'm Wrong 4:00
6 Just Like Me 4:12
7 Just Like All the Rest 2:32
8 I Can't Believe 4:00
9 Working Nights 2:33
10 You Tried to Take It All 4:25


1. Stick Heat 6:18
2. Indian Summer 2:07
3. Idol 3:32
4. There'll Be Changes 6:52
5. A New Way 7:55
6. Since You've Been Gone 4:48
7. Three Time Loser 4:30
8. Midnight Sun 4:43
09 Brand New Band Bonus (single A-side) 3:01
10 Can't Live Without You Bonus (single B--side) 3:33


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