The Blue Meaning

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The Blue Meaning
The Blue Meaning.jpg
Studio album by
Released6 June 1980
RecordedParkgate Studios, Battle, East Sussex, UK
GenreNew wave, punk rock
ProducerSteve James, Toyah
Toyah chronology
Sheep Farming in Barnet
The Blue Meaning
Toyah! Toyah! Toyah!
Singles from The Blue Meaning
  1. "Ieya" / "Helium Song (Spaced Walking)"
    Released: 6 June 1980

The Blue Meaning is the second studio album by the English new wave band Toyah, released in 1980 through Safari Records. Although not the first full-length release, this is often considered to be the band's first "proper" album.

It saw its first release on CD in 1990 on the Great Expectations label (As PIPCD 015), and was reissued in a double-CD package with Sheep Farming in Barnet in 2002. The latter release was remastered and included two bonus tracks.


Professional ratings
Review scores
Smash Hits3/10[1]

Writing for Smash Hits in 1980, Red Starr described The Blue Meaning as "gutless exhibitionism set to unmemorable rock music". He said the lyrics were "a mess of meaningless garbled imagery, all mysticism and supernatural hallucinations".[1]

The album reached number 40 on the UK Albums Chart.[2]

Track listing[edit]

Original LP[edit]

Side one
  1. "Ieya" (Toyah Willcox, Joel Bogen, Pete Bush) - 8:15
  2. "Spaced Walking" (Willcox, Bush) - 2:20
  3. "Ghosts" (Willcox, Bogen, Bush, Charlie Francis) - 3:29
  4. "Mummies" (Willcox, Bogen, Bush, Francis) - 2:58
  5. "Blue Meanings" (Willcox, Bogen, Bush) - 5:03
Side two
  1. "Tiger! Tiger!" (Willcox, Steve Bray, Bogen, Francis, Bush) - 3:19
  2. "Vision" (Willcox, Bogen, Bush) - 4:06
  3. "Insects" (Willcox, Bogen, Bush) - 2:44
  4. "Love Me" (Willcox, Bogen, Bush) - 3:02
  5. "She" (Willcox, Bray, Bogen, Francis, Bush) - 6:03

2002 reissue bonus tracks[edit]

  1. "Sphinx" (Willcox, Bogen) - 3:16
  2. "Street Addict" (Willcox, Bogen, Phil Spalding) - 5:36

Comments on songs[edit]

  • Spaced Walking was recorded as Toyah inhaled helium gas to give her vocals a 'squeaky' demeanor (she can be heard inhaling between lines).
    In 2011 Toyah remembered: "Steve James, Keith Hale, Gem Howard and I were messing around in the Marquee Studio at about 2am and Gem ordered a large cylinder of helium gas because he thought it would be fun. So Gem and I were in the vocal booth with Steve and Keith in the mixing studio and we were just messing about. It was improvised, Keith was on keyboards, I remember Gem having a spanner to open and close the gas valve every time I needed to fill me lungs."[3]
    The Helium Song", a b-side from this period, was simply an extended version of "Spaced Walking" with a longer introduction, and a proper ending - the album version simply fading out.
  • Insects. "…Of course coz I am a woman they want to grab my body and do vulgar things. They want to fantasize about me which is fine because that's what my music is, it's pure fantasy. Insects was inspired by when ever I walked by the audience there would be hands clambering all over my body and I just thought 'Urgh- insects, insects!'. But on stage I go to the audience and just let them rip me to pieces". - Toyah speaking on ATV Documentary, 1980.[4]


  • Toyah Willcox - verbals + unusual sounds
  • Joel Bogen - guitar
  • Pete Bush - keyboards, trumpet
  • Charlie Francis - bass guitar
  • Steve Bray - drums
  • Steve James - arrangements and producer with Toyah, engineer, mixing at The Marquee Studios, London
  • Perry Morgan - assistant engineer


  1. ^ a b Starr, Red. "Albums". Smash Hits (June 26 – July 9 1980): 31.
  2. ^ "Toyah Official Charts". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 2017-11-13.
  3. ^ "Toyah Talks Music". FSF-A Interview. Retrieved 2011-01-01.
  4. ^ "Toyah Documentary". ATV. 1980. Archived from the original on 2011-10-12. Retrieved 2011-01-01.