JOEL GRIND (TOXIC HOLOCAUST): “There Was A Little Bit More Of A Traditional Speed Metal Approach To The Riffs And Song Writing”

Joel Grind (Toxic Holocaust)

Toxic Holocaust released their latest album Primal Future back in October and were touring heavily in support of it before the world got hit by the current pandemic. Toxic Holocaust like many other bands from the New American Wave of Thrash have continued to put out great music and tour extensively from other underground bands such as Nails to more mainstream acts like Soulfly. Toxic’s front man Joel Grind took the time to talk with Metal Express Radio about the band’s latest album, touring with such a variety in the genre and his own recording business he has started.

Primal Future was released back in October how have things been going for the band since?

Everything has been great man the reception has been really good just trying to keep busy we had a heavy tour scheduling coming up. Right now, just figuring out what the next step is with this whole pandemic thing is.

How would you compare Primal Future to the bands other albums?

I wanted to do something a little bit different then the last record, difference between the last one I tried to do almost the toxic version of Reign in Blood where the songs were short and keeps hitting you over the head with riffs, for Primal Future I wanted to do something that was nothing like the last record because it’s kind of boring to keep doing the same record over and over so I wanted this one to have the songs a little more longer. I guess there was a little bit more of a traditional speed metal approach to the riffs and song writing as opposed to Chemistry of Consciousness which was more just like metal punk where the songs were a minute and a half to two minutes long.

The albums been out for about seven months now what kind of feedback have you received?

Feedbacks been great man you never really know how everything’s going to receive something that’s not exactly like the previous record and sometimes people can be fixated on just one sound so if you deviate from that you could have some backlash but overall has been very positive and especially six years between the two records. It seems like the fan base is still there and they’re still hungry for new music and I can’t tell them how much I appreciate that.

Do you think the gap between the two records had to do with extensive touring?

Yeah you know it’s funny even though there was a six-year break between the records I was still touring with the band and there was never really a hiatus. I also basically started my own business with a recording studio, I’ve been mixing bands and mastering bands and that took off a lot more than I thought it was going to so to keep up with that on top of making a new record, everything kind of got lost in the shuffle and I had to learn how to balance both and now I kind of figured that out. There definitely won’t be six years until the next one.

Are there any bands that you have worked with that you would like to mention?

Oh man there has been a lot that have just been awesome. There is a band from San Diego called Take Offense they’re really good, another band called Expander who are killer. I worked on a lot of classic bands too that really had an impact on me in my younger days and that was an honor to me. I did mixing on the Feel the Darkness remix by Poison Idea. That was a real important record to me. I feel real fortunate I’ve been able to work on stuff like that along with some newer bands that are killing it right now.

When the pandemic blows over what do you see as far as plans for yourself and the band?

Hopefully more touring we had a touring schedule for the summer time over in Europe for some festivals and fill in dates but unfortunately the plug has been pulled on those. In between then and now until we figure out what’s going on I’ve been working on some new music I think I’ll do an EP with Toxic maybe just a two song twelve inch maybe or just a digital release. just trying to stay busy and keep the music going out there, got to be able to do something and keep you mind occupied outside the shitty situation.

Coming from a band that has toured with everyone from Nails to Gwar to Soulfly, how has it been to play in front of such diverse audiences?

You know im just a music fan in general it seems like a no brainer to me but I think for other people I think it’s surprising. Some bands you could stay kind of stay in their lane and don’t really bring bands that are outside of their element on tour but I feel fortunate that were able to tour with punk bands hardcore bands thrash and other kinds of stuff. Honestly at the end of the day it all kind of comes together I think fans of a band like Nails or a band like Gwar could potentially be a Toxic fan also.

Has there ever been an audience that has been tough for the band to win over?

We toured with Hatebreed and that was a bit rough to start off with to get the fans into it but they came around eventually. First couple of songs people were kind of looking around like they didn’t know what to think but towards the end of our sets people started to dig it.

What is one album you would suggest someone to start off with that is unfamiliar with the band?

I would probably say Overdose of Death that seems to be a fan favorite.

If you could create your own Big Four, who would it be?

I would probably pick all of them but I would switch out Anthrax for Exodus


  • Matt Zaniboni

    Matthew is an interviewer here at Metal Express Radio. He started his passion for music journalism back in his college radio days serving as the Heavy Metal Director at WKKL out of Hyannis Massachusetts. During Matt’s tenure in radio, he has had time working for commercial stations in Boston Massachusetts such as WAAF, WZLX AND 98.5 The Sports Hub before landing with Metal Express Radio. Anytime you want to talk heavy Metal, hockey, Guiness, and dad life, Matt is your guy m/

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