This song comes from Toad’s 1997 album Coil, their fifth, and their last before a reunion album 16 years later.
Both Alexandra and I were fans of Toad the Wet Sprocket’s album Fear when we met, and it became a bonding element for us. It’s funny that she and I have very little musical overlap in general but managed to find a few artists who meant a whole lot to both of us. Although I probably would have faked liking these guys if it meant spending more time with her.
It’s been five years since the release of Toad the Wet Sprocket’s reunion album New Constellation and I’d say they’re overdue for a follow-up. Sure, fans had to wait 16 years between their pre-breakup album Coil and this one, but we’re not gluttons for punishment.
As I’ve written before, Toad the Wet Sprocket is my favorite 90s band. They released five excellent albums spanning that decade before splitting, including a couple that were the soundtrack to the early years of my relationship with my wife. So I have an emotional tie to their music in addition to really digging their sound.
After all, it’s the first major single from Toad the Wet Sprocket’s breakthrough album, and I’ve blogged about Toad the Wet Sprocket songs 13 times before.
But no, somehow I’d never made it around to ‘Walk On the Ocean,’ the first song I ever heard, 25 years ago, by a band I still love today.
Toad the Wet Sprocket is one of my favorite 90s bands and I have outsized affection for them due to the role they played in the early years of my relationship with my wife. But it takes more than that to topple The Rolling Stones, inarguably one of the greatest rock bands of all time.
Back in 2012 I counted down my favorite 90s albums and Toad the Wet Sprocket’s Dulcinea landed in the tenth spot.
That feels low to me as I sit here and contemplate the album and its impact on me back in 1994, but when I check out the titles that rounded out the top ten it’s hard to justify moving it up against such stiff competition.
I’ve written before that Toad the Wet Sprocket is my favorite of the alternative bands that truly belong to the 90s. The band’s debut album, Bread & Circus, was released in 1989 and the four records that make up the heart of their discography were released between 1990 and 1997.
Coil was the last of these and many fans consider it the best. I have difficulty finding much space between this record, 1991’s Fear and 1994’s Dulcinea in terms of quality. That’s a trilogy I’d stack up against anybody’s work from the era.