by USER (1 Reviews)
April 22nd, 2006 | 1 replies

Release Date: 2001 | Tracklist

First off, let me preface my review by saying the following: Tool is, without a doubt my favorite band. To me there is none better. Having said this, if it sounds like I am praising this album a little too much than you think it deservers, just know that they are my favorite band.

Now the review:

1. The Grudge:

This is an album opener for the ages. The first 8 seconds starts off with a noise that can only be described as some kind of machine turning on, but once the noise ends, you know you're in for a ride. The actual song starts with a grooving bass/guitar line with some nice background drumming. This goes on for about 53 seconds, until we hear the first vocals on the album. After the vocals comes a bit of a break, but then the vocals kick back in at a slower pace. The lyrics in this song are very (for lack of a better word) spooky, with the core subject matter being about holding some sort of pent-up anger against someone too long. At about 2:40, the song grows a little heavier, with the lyrics changing somewhat, adding to the overall feel of the song. At about 3:43, Danny Carey gives us a very brief taste of his drumming skills with a couple of very nice solo/fills. The song then goes into a fairly straight-forward "rock" part, with Maynard singing "Define in, confide in, Sinking deeper...". After this, we get a nice little variation of one of the eariler riffs. At about 4:48, the song slows down quite a bit, but not for long: Adam comes in with a nice little guitar riff, and after another repitition of this riff with Maynard singing, the song then takes it back to the star, replaying the opening riff. At 6:59, Maynard lets loose with a 24 second long scream that is, in my opinion, the best I've ever heard. After the end of the scream, the tension of the song comes to an all-time high, with the resolution begining at the 8:01 mark, in which the band is totally togther, with Danny playing an incredible solo behind all of this maddness. With the end of the song comes a breif moment of release, which is needed after the insanity of The Grudge. By far one of the best tracks on the album


2/3. Eon Blue Apocolypse/The Patient:

Although these are two seperate tracks, they flow perfectly into each other, so I'm going to review them as one track. Eon Blue starts with Adam playing a "tremloed" note with another guitar playing a beautiful progression of notes underneath. The song ends with Adam playing a nice "outro" of sorts, which leads right into The Patient. This song starts off with a nice guitar riff, which is accompanied by Justin playing a weird bass part, and Danny with some cymbal work. After a bit more of this, the bass and drums drop out, and Adam plays a little riff that leads into the vocal part. The vocals kick in, along with the bass and drums at about 1:08. This is a slow moving part of the song, with the band playing the same riff quite abit, but once you hit the 2:19 mark, and you can haer the guitar gradually building up feedback, you know you're in for a rude awakening. The song bursts into a storm of distortion, with Adam playing some nice riffs. This part continues until 4:08, with the band repeating an earlier, un-distorted riff, whichi is then followed a brief break in the song: At about 2:30, the music drops out, and the only things you can hear are the bass playing a naturally harominced progression, and the vocals (You can also hear the guitar if you listen really closely). After this, the song picks up where it left off with a blast of distortion which the whole family can enjoy. At 5:31, Maynard starts sing the line "Must keep reminding myself of this" over and over, with the band first playing an accompanient, then a nice lead part. The song then ends with the band plying different forms of an earlier riff, but this time at a much slower pace. This is a very solid track that is one of my favorites.


4/5. Mantra/Schism:

As with Eon Blue/The Patient, Mantra and Schism are two tracks that flow into one another. Mantra is a 1:12 long filler track of Maynard squeezing his cat, slowed down to make it sound kind of like ghosts. Schism is a track that you have heard if you are any fan of rock music. It starts with Adam and Justin playing a nice progression, and then kicks into one of the most haunting/infectious bass lines ever. This song will get stuck in your head, I guarentee it. The bass line continues, and at 0:27, the drums and guitar come in playin a nice background riff. This continues on until 1:20, when the song gets a little heavier, but then at about 1:35, the song goes back to the way it was. This pattern (Soft, heavy, soft, heavy) continues until 3:30, when everything but the guitar drops, and Adam plays a nice riff/solo. this "thing" continues on until 5:21, in which the band kicks back in again, and at about 5:41, the end of the song starts, with the band playing a slow melodic riff. The song ends with the band plying a heavy riff, with Danny in the back playing a very nice drum part. A good track, but after a few listen, you see how repetitive it really is.


6/7. Parabol/Parabola:

Another case of a track leading into another. Parabol starts with Adam playing a guitar parts that almost puts you to sleep. Maynard joins, and is in until the end of the song. At various points during the song the bass joins and drops suddenly, as does Danny with purely cymbal work. The song ends with a precurser to Parabola: As the song ends, Adam begins turning up the volume on his guitar, getting the full amount of diustortion. This kicks straight into Parabola, which begins with one of the best riffs on the album. At first listen, you can tell that this song is a little different thatn the others so far: This song starts off at a fairly fast pace. At 0:20, the guitar drops out and the bass then plays a nice riff under Maynard singing. This continues for a few moments, until 0:38, when the guitar kicks back in, and after a nice riff, the band begins to play the opening riff once again. After another guitar "solo", the song stays heavy, with the band playing the opening riff yet again. After this, the song goes in a different direction, slowing down considerably. After a bit of this, the song picks back up again at around 3:39, where the band plays a very nice progression. This goes on until about 3:56, where Danny cand be heard playing a drum roll, paving the way for the band to follow. The song Continues like this until the end, in which the guitar plays a riff accompanied by drums from time to time. Overall a great track, and with the exception of the end of Parabola, perfection.


8. Ticks and Leeches:

This song starts of with Danny doing some crazy drumming, which continues until 0:33, when the guitar comes in and plays a nice accompaning riff. After this comes Danny playing a slightly slower-than-usual drum part, with the band following close behind. The Chorus' are one of the high points of the album, where the band is at its full potential of distorted guitar, groovy bass and excellent drumming. This kicks into another verse, and after another chorus, the music drops, and all that we have left is Adam playing a nice progression. This continues for about 2 minutes, but once the music dies out at about 5:51, you realize it's going to come back even heavier. The music comes back with by far the heaviest riff on the album until around 6:41, where it gets a little slower, and the band begins to play an earlier riff. This continues for the rest of the song. A great track, but not as good as the others.


9. Lateralus:

The title track has something in store for everyone. It begins with Adam plying a soft riff for a little bit. After a bit of a change in the riff, you begin to hear something: A noise beginning to graually build up. This continues until about 1:13, when the tension of the begining is finally released, and we are greeted by the band playing my favorite riff of the album. After the riff, the bass and guitar drop out, and we are left with Danny's incredible drumming, and Maynard's singing. This continues, with bass and guitar coming in at different points, until 2:32, where the band plays the main riff of the song again. This same sequence happenes again during the second verse, but this time we are greeted by Adam playing a nice solo. This continues until 4:49, when the bass is left playing a single note over and over. The guitar comes in again, playing an altered version of the opening riff of the song. This continues until 6:20, when the music gets a little heavier. This goes on until 4:41, when we are thrust into another one of Adam weird solos. This one continues until 7:18, when Adam is left playing a riff a few times. The bass and drums kick back in, and we begin to ride down a road of music guiness. At 7:30, Maynard comes in with his most metaphyscial lyrics up until this point, sing "With my feet upon the ground, I lose myself between the sound and open wide to suck it in I feel it move across my skin. I'm reaching up, and reaching uot. I'm reaching for the random or whatever will bewilder me, whatever will bewilder me. Following our will and wind we may just go where no one's been. We'll ride the spiral 'til the end, and may just go where no one's been." After this the song gives off a feeling of release, and at the end, we hear the notes to the main riff of the song. This is my second favorite track on the album.


10/11/12. Disposition/Reflection/Triad:

Disposition starts off with a bass line that reminds of the theme song of E.R. This is a slow track, which is great to meditate to. Not much to say about it, other than it flows perfectly into Reflection. Reflection begins with some great drumming by Danny. The bass and guitar comes in, and it continues until 3:43, when Maynard begins to sing. This continues until 4:47, when the band plays the opening riff once again. Once they are done with the opening riff, the bass and guitar drops out, and we are left with Danny and Maynard. They do their thing until 6:00, when Adam and Justin join in on the fun, and start to do a little exchange of feedback. This continues until about 6:23, when the band kicks right back into one of the earlier riffs. At 7:36, Adam begins one of my favorite solos of all time. This solo continues until about 8:24, when the band plays a nice riff. As the song continues, it grows a little faster, and a little heavier, until the 10:08 mark, where everything but guitar drops out, and we are left with a nice progression, which leads straight into Triad. Triad is an instrumental, with the only thing even close to being considered vocals being random electronic screeches. It features some nice drumming, and some pretty good guitar work from Adam. Other than that, it has over 2 minutes of silence at the very end. This progression of song features my favorite song on the album (Reflection), but it also feature one "filler" track, and one "half-track". Despite these downfalls, Reflection more than makes up for it.


I'm not going to review Faaip De Oaid, for the simple reason that to me it has nothing to contribute to the album.

Overall: 4.7/5

This is certainly one of my favorite albums of all time. From begining to end, this album has perfection in mind. Although it may not reach perfection on some tracks, others are more than perfect. I can't wait for 10,000 Days...

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Comments:Add a Comment 
April 22nd 2006


Nice effort and all, but reviews are much better when, instead of giving a play-by-play (bass starts then drums come in at :32 then guitar plays a really cool riff at 1:55), try to touch on the themes/emotions of the album. Here are some questions which, if answered by you in the review, will usually present a really helpful review for both people who have heard the album and those who haven't.

- What themes and emotions run through the entire album? Is the album cohesive or disjointed? Does it flow musically and thematically?
- What sets individual songs apart? What aspects make one song better/worse than the rest?
- Do the lyrics stand out? Do they improve/lessen the songs? Do they fit with the mood of each song and the mood of the album?
- What influenced the band to make this album? How are previous albums a buildup to this one? What impact does this album have on the band's musical path? On other bands within the genre? Outside of the genre?

etc etc. Just try to answer these sorts of things in your review or at least keep them in mind. It is boring and uninformative to read the kind of thing you wrote, no offense meant at all. If people own the album, they already know the play-by-play and thus don't need your transcription of it. For people who haven't heard it, your play-by-play only really makes sense once they hear the album, so it is once again pointless.

But great effort and welcome to the site.

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