Review Summary: An amazing record that starts with a quick jab and keeps on rolling. Armed with great vocal work, amazing drumming, and great guitars, this record is truly a masterpiece in its own right.
Many bands don’t show up in the music industry like Tool
, that’s for sure. At first, Tool started out very rough and edgy, coming across with Metal music a lot. This and the album, also adored by fans, Aenima, however, seemed to want to reach out to something different. This album reaches to a more progressive and introspective point in their music, and it seems Tool struck gold with this concept and this was basically what made them accessible to a mass audience. After listening to "10,000 Days" for only a couple of times and getting fed up with it, it felt good to go back and listen to this, the CD that got me into the band in the first place.
Maynard James Keenan-Vocals
Justin Chancellor-Bass guitar
The album opens up with a whirring noise, like a washing machine being turned on, and the song hits you. The first song on the record, The Grudge
, is a heavy-hitter that packs a punch. Most notable on this are the driving bass and drums and Maynard’s shattering scream, lasting more than 20 seconds! The drums, guitars, everything is as heavy as Tool has ever made. Maynard's shouting vocals just make my day. The song comes to a sudden halt, which leads us to the dreamy segue of Eon Blue Apocalypse
. Not too much here, just Adam experimenting. After this we fade into the next track…
…Which is The Patient
. Now many people say this track doesn’t jump out at you at the start, and it’s very true. At around the 2:20 mark, an eruption of heavy guitars and powerful drums sends this track onto a whole new course from the dreary opening, experimenting with many riffs. Justin shows his great melodic playing with the intro, once again being creative, just like The Grudge. The song goes from being an almighty song to climbing back in his hole, leaving you wanting more heavy riffage and drumming. The "Wait it out.."'s sung strongly by Maynard stick in your head. The segue Mantra
follows, and there are many rumors on what this track is, but I don’t want to guess, because people would pounce on me and say "It's ___ DuR St00pid!!1". It just seems it is a voice fading in and out, disturbing yet soothing, which is kind of an oxymoron, but whatever.
Amazing. Just one word describes the great hit from the band, Schism
. When Justin enters with his infamous bass line, you know what song it is. The song boasts great vocals, bass, drums, guitar, the works. The song is going good, until it hits the beautiful bridge, where it gets amazing. When Maynard is singing “Between supposed lovers…”, it is one of the best bits I’ve heard from the band. The ending is Maynard angrily yelling/singing "I know the pieces fit!" The song is really, really good, and it’s one of the songs that got me in the band.
Next up is the tying track Parabol/a
, which is many people’s favorite. Parabol starts out subdued and quiet, just like the intro to the patient. Maynard’s soft vocals, soft guitar… and the BAM! Parabola hits you like a freight-train. This track boasts extremely well done vocals. I am also amazed with the bridge. The only problem I have with the song is the vocals sound strained in the second chorus, but other than that they’re amazing. Also, the guitar has a pretty well done “solo” by Adam Jones in the second verse. Another amazing song that really got me hooked. The bass work is also well executed.
Now is time for Ticks and Leeches
, my least favorite song. Yeah, yeah, it’s so much different than what’s on the record, blah blah blah. Honestly, I love the intro and the outro, but the 3 MINUTE LONG bridge is what kills it for me. This is the worst song on the record just because the soft bridge destroys the menacing attitude of the song. If they made it maybe a minute with more things happening, it would be a lot better. The percussive intro is exceptional, and bass work is almost non-existant, which is rare for Justin.
Now is time for my favorite song, Lateralus
. This song got me into the band, and this song features wild drumming by Danny and a few great bass lines from Justin. This song has Maynard's vocals in every form: Soft, loud, soothing, anf yelling. Every member shows his presence in this masterpiece, and I love that a lot. It also has a positive aura, where most Tool songs have a mysterious aura around them, which again attracts me to the song. This song has a soaring chorus, amazing bridge(s) with solos that fit the song, and the amazing bridge starting at around 7:20. This track is a work of art, and my favorite by them. You’ll have to hear it yourself to judge.
The final juggernaut (and I mean JUGGAnaut), is Disposition/Reflection/Triad
. This trio really concludes the album well, with dreamy passages and reserved playing in Disposition, proving how beautiful Tool can be with the great intro to this song. Reflection shows how amazing the rhythym section can be, with Danny's tribal drums and Justin's interesting but repeating bass line. And the instrumental Triad, featuring Danny and Adam, Adam even giving us another solo, but pretty repeated guitar work, which fades into the closer of Faaip De Oiad
, the estranged phone call of a person that claimed to see aliens or something. Yeah, pretty weird. This triplet was the hardest for me to get into, so just give it time, and it will soon grow on you.
This album is one of my personal favorites, and holds great value to me. I would recommend this to anyone that listens to hard rock or metal especially, but I think in time, everyone will be able to get into this wonderful record. This is the album that truely opened my eyes to music. This record has left a mark on modern music that I doubt will be covered up soon.