Let's be honest: B-Sides and unreleased demos aren't always fascinating. Although some bands manage to hide endearing gems in the corners of their catalogue, most deleted cuts are deleted for a reason.
Offered as a bonus companion to their captivating album Clear Shot, Spellbound EP presents TOY's cutting floor jams, and while it isn't quite an essential release, it does offer a glimpse into the creative process behind one of this year's finer indie rock records.
Choosing not to rival Clear Shot's distilled pop leanings, Spellbound runs in the other direction instead. The title song, for example, is a slow-burner drenched in messy reverb; "Love Seeker" is an album highlight that would be a perfectly enveloping ballad if it weren't for its ballsy production.
With these four tracks, the band clearly chose to push the envelope too far in order to find their comfort zone, in the process developing psychedelic ideas and dynamic shifts that found their final form on the full-length album. It's a courageous move to show their work, and at least for hardcore fans, it pays off nicely. (Heavenly)