After a lengthy career in and out of the pop charts, the '80s supergroup Toto has much to show for its efforts. Along with plentiful accolades for the 1984 smash TOTO IV and numerous lesser hits, there have been many gems that have gone unheard. With XX, we can now sample a taste of the group's work that fell by the wayside. This is not to say that this material is sub-standard; little of what Toto ever created could be called that. The powerful musical talent that makes up this group has always been in high gear regardless of the many personnel and popularity changes that have taken place over these 20 years.
Stretching back to the early days of 1977, the Boz Scaggs-flavored "Mrs. Johnson" and "Miss Sun," a Scaggs hit itself, feature original bassist David Hungate. The soaring vocals of first lead singer Bobby Kimball shine on the rocker "Tale Of A Man" from 1979 and "Goin' Home" from a decade later. The late drummer Jeff Porcaro's trademark shuffle groove drives the up-beat "Last Night" with vocalist Joe Willams. As a bonus, three live tracks from a 1997 tour featuring new drummer Simon Phillips include the stunning instrumental "Dave's Gone Skiing" and the smash hit "Africa" with authentic African chanting and percussion.