After an all too short career as a double Super Bike Champion, James Toseland returned to his first love of music. He was a trained pianist before developing an interest in motorcycles, which led him turning professional at the age of 15 and riding his bike all over the world. As a result music had to take a back seat.
After retiring from racing due to injury in 2011, music has resurfaced as his focus. Now he has a band together, an awesome new album and we hope a long musical career ahead!
Kickstarting this new musical chapter saw Toseland playing at Download, supporting The Darkness, Little Angels and now Status Quo. Despite the small stage at The Horn, the band Toseland dominate the stage. They kick off the set with Gotta Be A Better Way and cook up a storm with their melodic riffs and powerhouse rock songs throughout the set with Singer In A Band and Crash Landing. Playing unfamiliar material is always a challenge, but something that the St Albans audience responded well to - in fact some of them even knew a few of the songs (Renegade, Life Is Beautiful) thanks to You Tube and Planet Rock; Who knew there were so many closet head bangers in suburbia! For good measure the set also contained a couple of familiar tunes, an excellent cover of Teardrop Explodes Reward and Saturday Night's Alright For Fighting.
An unlikely rockstar, James Toseland is totally relaxed in front of an audience and whilst he is not a showman in the vain of Bruce Dickinson or Freddie Mercury, he has a natural charm and enthusiasm for his music which just radiates from the stage and makes him very watchable and he's a bloody nice bloke too. His keyboard playing is highly competent and his rock vocals are perfectly matched with his songs. Move over Dave Grohl, rock may have found it's new nice guy!
This 5 piece band are really tight and drive the music with a bad-ass rhythm section and some great shreds from Zurab Melua on lead guitar. The band really enhance the rockier elements of the songs and look like they are having a ball and especially like playing up to the audience in the intimate venue.
Toseland are certainly building up a bit of a reputation and it's only a matter of time before this super bike champ and his band are superstars in the rock world too, we expect nothing less!