Albums In My Collection
– Get It On Credit
– Girls Night Out
– Head On
– Lookin’ For Trouble
Here’s a rather obscure band from the ’80s that started to see some moderate success before suddenly dissolving into oblivion. Too bad, since this group had the potential to really make it big. Or rather, BIG!!!
Led by a singer with the silly name of Holly Woods—yet a singer who had a voice and a range equally as powerful as Ann Wilson from Heart fame—and a guitarist/background vocalist named Sheron Alton, the group’s third album Get It On Credit had some people, including myself, sitting up to take notice. I recall seeing them on the then-infant MTV with the video for the single “Your Daddy Don’t Know” (with its ultra-catchy chorus) and immediately fell in love with Holly’s voice.
This album, along with Toronto’s first two albums Lookin’ For Trouble and Head On, had some fairly decent material, AOR mixed with Hard Rock, sort of a combination between Heart, Pat Benatar, and the mighty Tantrum. And always, fantastic vocals and background harmonies.
One song that truly highlighted Holly’s amazing range was “You Better Run” from their debut Lookin’ For Trouble album (yep, the same song eventually recorded and made famous by Pat Benatar), and Holly’s ad-libs and screams at the end of the track are simply jaw-dropping—sorry, Pat, but Holly’s performance makes mincemeat of your tamer version.
Anyway, the songs “Break Down The Barricades” and “Run For Your Life” (among countless others) from Get It On Credit were especially powerful, and this album, as a whole, was way the hell better than average. Had the band continued in the same vein with their fourth album, things may have gone much better for them, especially since they had their all-important “MTV-boost.”
Unfortunately, that fourth album (Girls Night Out) seemed a major step down. The band started to sound more pop to me (and to many others, unfortunately), with much lighter material (aimed toward the MTV crowd, still in its infant stage), and it was a huge letdown after the strong Get It On Credit album.
Also note, Toronto seemed to have released a final fifth album a year later, but I learned about it only recently and have yet to hear any of the material (if I can even locate a copy of it). Needless to say, it didn’t make a dent in the charts.
Nevertheless, the band’s first three albums, especially the third Get It On Credit album, are still enjoyable after all these years. And for fans of female-fronted rock bands, this group of three albums are a “no-brainer”—get them, on credit—if necessary (all puns intended).
Another final note: Holly Woods, whether with Toronto or solo (she released one album on her own, Live It Up!—which could have easily passed for a “heyday” Toronto album—recorded back in the 80s yet released only in 2007), had killer pipes and deserved huge success!
In general, Toronto is yet another band that (for me) remains sorely missed.