Feeler was supposed to have been the Toadies's follow-up album to the critically acclaimed debut Rubberneck; however, its release was denied by Interscope Records. In June 2010 the band announced that they had re-entered the studio to "rediscover" and re-record the album. This nine-song version was released on August 10, 2010.
In 1997, the band decided to end their Rubberneck tour and began work on their follow-up album. In the beginning of 1998, the band entered Arlyn Studios and Pedernales Studio with producer Paul Leary. They recorded 15 songs in consideration for the album, initially planning for a fall 1998 release. By August, due to 'scheduling problems', the album, which now had the tentative title Feeler, was still not mixed or mastered, although there was still hope that it would be released in early 1999. During this time, the band was considering adding more songs for consideration for the album, including the new songs "You'll Come Down" and "Trust Game", as well as older songs including "Cut Me Out" and "Broke Down Stupid".Interscope Records did not approve the finished product, and rejected its release. The band went back into the studio, salvaging some of the songs recorded during the Feeler sessions, and eventually released their second full-length album Hell Below/Stars Above in the spring of 2001.
The band was planning on releasing the music and were asking for suggestions for tracks to put on it on their message board before it unexpectedly went down. At this point the record company claims to have lost the master recordings for the album.
Listed below are the original Feeler songs. Note that an official track list order was never finalized, and not all of the songs would have necessarily appeared on the album. Non-mastered versions have been leaked online.
"Tornado" was originally written and recorded by Lisa Umbarger's father's band, the Jiants, in 1959.
A total of five of the Feeler songs were recorded during the sessions for Hell Below/Stars Above. Three of them appear on the album, "Push the Hand", "Best of Three" (as "What We Have We Steal") and "Dollskin". Additionally, "Joey, Let's Go" was recorded and release on a compilation and "Waterfall" was recorded, but not officially released.
Following the band's reformation in 2008, talk among the fan community and even from the band itself discussed the possibility of finally releasing Feeler in some format. However, Interscope refused to relinquish their rights to the original recordings. This led to the band deciding to re-record the songs from the album, although as Kirtland Records' Tami Thomsen stated, "it's not necessarily the exact same album", and that this version of Feeler is "the band's interpretation of those songs, completely new and completely from scratch." The songs "Twitch", "Tornado", "Clarksville", "Littlefish", and "Your Day" were not recorded for the new album, while "Trust Game", and "ATF Theme", originally demos from around the same time, were. Packaging for CD, vinyl, and picture disc designed by Tommy Moore.