Behind The Tracks: Major Moment - Toxic (Single) (2023)

You know how artists sometimes tell stories about that special moment and the hit single coming together in just 20 minutes? Yeah, “Toxic” was NOTHING short of a songwriter’s nightmare, lol. It started as a demo some 17 years ago. We actually have quite a few songs with demos starting back then - “Living Your Life Like This”, “May Leave Scars”, “Dead”, “No Fear” - all of them were developed from very old instrumental demos and even have some samples and instrumentation that carried over from the original.

After having some success with those songs and getting more confident that older demos can get a new life, we’ve dug up the demo for “Toxic” which back then was called “Hard & Heavy”, and just as the title suggests, we decided to make it both. We were still in the early stages of developing the song: it didn’t have any lyrics, just the vocal melody played on a piano; when we suddenly had an extra day available in the studio with nothing planned for it, so we decided we’ll just write some lyrics on the spot. Working with Kevin Billingslea, our producer, and friend of 5 years, has taught us to take risks and step outside of our comfort zone. We did just that, but after spending a few hours writing lyrics to it something was still off, and we just couldn’t find the hook we wanted. It was painful, everyone was getting worked up, so we decided to call it a day and regroup later.

Lyrically, “Toxic” was actually inspired by one of our followers on social media, who was being a little bit too impatient with our release schedule, saying things like "don't you have other songs?" while we indeed had about an album's worth of songs out and "how many times are you gonna post about this same song" right after we just released a new single. Then he just disappeared. So our writing went in that direction with the demo changing the title to “Owe You”.

After getting home and sitting on what we wrote in the studio for a while, we decided to tweak the vocal melody and adjust the angle, and all of a sudden, lyrically it became much easier to write. It made us think about the impact social media consumption trends can have on artists and creators, forcing them to produce as much content as frequently as possible to stay relevant and grow. But is it done at the cost of compromising on quality, or even worse, the creator's mental health? Then we just wrote the song through the metaphor of being in a toxic romantic relationship, something almost everyone is familiar with.

When we brought it back to Kevin, it was a straight shot from there. We actually just filmed a skit about how we wrote “Toxic” (a condensed version of it, obviously) and posted it on TikTok. Check it out here:

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