Toy Love

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Toy Love
Toy Love album cover
Toy Love album cover
Background information
OriginDunedin, New Zealand
GenresAlternative rock, punk rock, new wave
Years active1978–1980
Past membersChris Knox
Alec Bathgate
Paul Kean
Mike Dooley
Jane Walker

Toy Love were a New Zealand new wave and punk rock band that originated in Dunedin and was active from 1978 to 1980. Members included Chris Knox, Alec Bathgate and Paul Kean.


Chris Knox was the band's front man and other members were guitarist Alec Bathgate, bass player Paul Kean, drummer Mike Dooley, and keyboard player Jane Walker. The band developed out of the earlier punk band The Enemy from Dunedin, and are often regarded as the progenitors of the Dunedin sound movement.[1] Toy Love were together for less than two years (1978–80) and spent a large part of that time in Australia.

They released just one album, which was self-titled Toy Love. The band members were apparently appalled by the mixing of the tracks, which took the edge off the band's deliberately raw sound. Allmusic gave the album a 3/5 rating.[2] In April 2005, the album was remastered and released along with a number of demos and unreleased tracks as a double CD entitled Cuts. In 2012, a further compilation, simply titled Toy Love, was released on double LP, containing all singles, b-sides, compilation tracks, demos and some live recordings (this has the same front cover artwork as Cuts).

After Toy Love broke up, Bathgate and Knox remained together as the Tall Dwarfs. Kean was later a member of The Bats.

In 2012, Toy Love was inducted into the New Zealand Music Hall of Fame and given the Legacy Award at the Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards.[3]

Jane Walker died in October 2018; her death was announced by Flying Nun Records on Twitter.[4]


Studio albums[edit]

List of studio albums, with New Zealand chart positions
Title Album details Peak chart
Toy Love
  • Released: August 1980
  • Label: Deluxe Records, WEA (Z 20008)
  • Format: LP, Cassette

Live albums[edit]

List of live albums, with New Zealand chart positions
Title Album details Peak chart
Live At The Gluepot
  • Released: April 2012
  • Label: Real Groovy Records (RGLP 001)
  • Format: 2xLP, 2xCD
  • Recorded September 1980 at Ponsonby, Auckland, NZ

Compilation albums[edit]

List of compilation albums, with New Zealand chart positions
Title Album details Peak chart
Cuts 23
Toy Love

Extended Plays[edit]

List of EPs
Title Details
Toy Love
  • Released: 1980
  • Label: Deluxe Records (20630)
  • Format: 7"


List of singles with selected New Zealand positions
Title Year Peak chart positions Album
1979 "Rebel" / "Squeeze" 29 Toy Love (EP)
1980 "Don't Ask Me" 10 Toy Love
"Bride of Frankenstein" 22


Aotearoa Music Awards[edit]

The Aotearoa Music Awards (previously known as New Zealand Music Awards (NZMA)) are an annual awards night celebrating excellence in New Zealand music and have been presented annually since 1965.

Year Nominee / work Award Result Ref.
2012 Toy Love New Zealand Music Hall of Fame inductee [6]


  1. ^ Stranded In Paradise, New Zealand Rock and Roll 1955 to the Modern Era, J. Dix, Penguin, 2005, ISBN 0-14-301953-8, Chapter 25
  2. ^ "Toy Love Review", Allmusic, retrieved 11 May 2012.
  3. ^ "Musicians get ready for NZ Music Awards". 3 News NZ. 1 November 2012.
  4. ^ "Flying Nun Records on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 13 October 2018.
  5. ^ a b c d "Toy Love Discography". Retrieved 21 August 2021.
  6. ^ "HOME INDUCTEES". Retrieved 16 August 2021.

External links[edit]