With these (and other) musicians fluidly coming and going, the group remained an active live entity throughout the early '80s. Based on the lineup, the group's music could run the gamut from no wave skronk (à la Lindsay's DNA) to percussion-heavy semi-tribal post-dance music. However, there were few Toy Killers recordings available during this era to document their ever-mutating sound. These recordings included a few scattered compilation tracks -- including one on the 1984 Homestead compilation Speed Trials -- alongside Sonic Youth, the Beastie Boys, and Lydia Lunch -- as well as a cassette, Humdrum, which was not well distributed.
The Toy Killers went on an extended hiatus beginning in the late '80s, with Miller ultimately moving to California and actually playing in a wedding band there during the '90s. However, Miller got back into the world of improvised music during the mid-2000s as he connected with Bay Area improvisers such as Henry Kaiser, Rova's Larry Ochs, and the Flying Luttenbachers' Weasel Walter. The latter persuaded Miller to hand over his old recordings of The Toy Killers for the purpose of making a CD, which became a finished product in late 2008. The CD, entitled The Unlistenable Years (ugEXPLODE), consists of 25 tracks recorded between 1980 and 1983, most of which were previously unreleased. Around the time of this CD, a revamped lineup -- featuring Miller and Noyes along with Beinhorn and newcomers Walter and Kaiser -- was in the process of recording a new album under the Toy Killers name.
Artist Biography by William York