Toto, “The Other End of Time” from Tambu (1995): Toto Tuesdays

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Much like Kingdom of Desire, 1995’s Tambu found Steve Lukather handling a lion’s share of the vocals with some assists from Toto’s background singers. However, where their 1992 studio project had a raw edge to it, Tambu is a much more polished endeavor.

Case in point is “The Other End of Time,” perhaps one of Lukather’s best vocal efforts of the many Toto ballads he has sung lead on over the years. Gone is the gritty energy of the previous album, showing that Lukather truly is a multi-faceted and talented vocalist – even if he does consider himself more of a guitarist than a singer.

Admittedly, Tambu didn’t grab me at first listen, with a couple of exceptions. “The Other End of Time” was one of them. The rest of the album has grown on me over time, but this Lukather feature didn’t have to.

Toto is not necessarily known for their lyrics, and “The Other End of Time” isn’t overly remarkable in that way. Yet Steve Lukather is still able to totally sell it with his heart-wrenching vocals. Besides, it’s not always about the lyrics: It’s about the conviction in the delivery. What “The Other End of Time” might lack in lyrical quality, Lukather’s vocals more than make up for. David Paich’s keyboard work also matches the yearning of Lukather’s voice, and the song is largely a showcase for the two of them. Their playing is completely in sync emotionally.

Tambu would mark the end of the quartet era of Toto, but they left us with a shining example of a band putting the pieces back together. “The Other End of Time” is the sound of Toto soldiering through perhaps the most trying time in their lives, let alone their careers.

Toto Tuesdays is a song-by-song feature that explores the band’s rich musical history. They returned with three new songs on 2018’s ’40 Trips Around the Sun.’

Perplexio

Perplexio

Perplexio also maintains a stand-alone blog called The Review Revue, where he explores music, movies and books. He spearheaded 'Saturdays in the Park,' our weekly multi-writer, song-by-song series focused on the music of Chicago. Contact Something Else! at [email protected] reviews.com.
Perplexio
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