Watch Testament's Alex Skolnick lay down a blazing lead on an all-star heavy metal cover of Toto's Hold The Line

Testament's Alex Skolnick has joined The Acacia Strain guitarist Devin Shidaker, In Flames drummer Tanner Wayne and more for a spectacular star-studded cover of Toto's Hold The Line.

Recorded for the metal-themed online talk show Two Minutes To Late Night, whose YouTube channel is populated by over 40 similarly fortified covers of pop-cultural treasures, this performance of the 1978 Toto classic dials everything up a little. Well, okay, a lot.

It opens with Shearwater keyboardist Emily Lee and Wayne stepping into that familiar 12/8 melody before Two Minutes to Late Night's Gwarsenio Hall (comedian Jordan Olds in corpsepaint) leaps off his couch with a Dunable Yeti in hand, with a Shidaker joining the jam in Hawaiian print boardshorts and his monster Balaguer Tartarus DS8 eight-string electric guitar in powder blue tiger stripe finish. 

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Yes, it's that sort of video. But to go fully over the top and embrace the theatrical majesty of the original, someone has to step into guitarist Steve Lukather's six-strings and send fire all around the room with a ripping lead. Enter Alex Skolnick.

The Testament lead guitarist and jazz trio stalwart does not disappoint, leaning into to those big melodic bends like he were the wind behind the sails of an Oyster 885 Series 1 as it cruises the azure waters off the Hamptons. While Protest The Hero's Rody Walker, Frozen Soul's Samantha Mobley get in on the action too.

Yacht rock is having a moment in the sun of late, with pop-rock superstar John Mayer going all-in with the FM rock aesthetic – and borrowing Toto alumni – for Last Train Home from his 80s-inspired new album, Sob Rock. But are we looking at a full-throated revival? Maybe that's just what we need.

As to where Two Minutes To Late Night might take their bedroom metal covers project next or who will join them, who can say? There are 45 covers in their catalogue already, including a run-through of Rush's Anthem featuring memebers of Coheed And Cambria, Mastodon, Primus and Tool, and Prince's I Would Die 4 U as interpreted by Lamb Of God and friends. Subscribe to the Two Minutes To Late Night YouTube channel for more.

Jonathan Horsley

Jonathan Horsley has been writing about guitars and guitar culture since 2005, playing them since 1990, and regularly contributes to MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitar World. He uses Jazz III nylon picks, 10s during the week, 9s at the weekend, and shamefully still struggles with rhythm figure one of Van Halen’s Panama.