10,000 Days



by montague USER (15 Reviews)
April 30th, 2006 | 46 replies

Release Date: 2006 | Tracklist

From the opening notes of Vicarious, it is clear that Tool, a band whose monumental success in the past 5 years is almost unparalleled by any other metal band, are anything if not Confident. Fueled by an over-enthusiastic rumor mill and a long gap since their last album (2001's Lateralus), 10,000 Days is easily one of the most anticipated releases of the decade.

Like each album before it, 10K Days has its own feel separate to its predecessors. While the rythm section of Justin Chancellor and Danny Carey is a solid as ever, the real change on 10K Days comes from the forefront of the sound: Keenan and Jones are both pushing themselves to do something unique on this album.

Keenan's usually commanding and outright vocals remain as righeous and creepy as ever, but as opposed to Lateralus (where vocals were written after the music), he fits his melodies into the contours created by Jones lead parts and Chancellor's bass counterpoint, most notably on The Pot, which starts painfully but gives way to some of his most original, memorable parts to date. The lyrics, too, are notably angrier than on the rather optimistic Lateralus.

Jones, on the other hand, makes his riffs less accessible if anything. Jambi starts with a chugga-chugga speed-metal riff stylistically similar to Meshuggah, while on Rosetta Stoned he tears new rythyms before you can get settled into them.

The main thing that keeps 10K Days from sounding like a bad Lateralus clone, though, is a the presence of undeniable, head-banging, grooves. Swing bars between the hammering choruses provide a plausible audio hand-hold to keep the Tool onslaught from being too intense to listen through.

10K days moves cyclically for a Tool album. The two openers, Vicarious and Jambi, are fairly run-of-the-mill Tool numbers (not necessarily a bad thing) at about 7 minutes each, each with a hammering, double-kicking climax, while Keenan snarls over the tidal wave. The only other song on this album vaguely similar to those is the swaggering pestilence of The Pot.

The dual-song avatar is present again on 10K Days, with Wings For Marie and 10,000 Days being interlocking concept tracks, bearing a slow, plodding build-up to an ethereally melodic and forceful peak, clocking in at a combined 17 minutes.

While Tool are known for their interlude tracks, the only ones that make appearances on 10K Days are needless at best, but dont detract from the album as a whole.

The best way to describe the difference between the violent thrashings on tracks like The Patient and the violent thrashings on 10K Days is to say that its like the difference between being caught in a storm and being chased by a T-Rex: On Lateralus, something is happening around you. On 10K Days, that something is determined on hammering every single perfectly-formed note of its riffs straight into your skull. This is precision Tool.

The second half of 10K Days is calmer than the first, with the exception of the bad-trip epic Rosetta Stoned worthy of the title of "The New Ticks and Leeches". Intension sounds like Aphex Twin on downers remixing A Perfect Circle, with minimalist tribal dronings buried below scratchy electronic drums.

The last "real" song on the album, Right In Two, recalls the fan- favourite version of Pu*** from Tool's Salival live album. Delay-laden guitars play softly against bass harmonics, until a predictable but nonetheless enjoyable climax.

Following up two of the most critically acclaimed and experimental pieces of heavy music of the past two decades is a steep challenge, but Tool, of course, pull it off flawlessly. Unique, melodically infectious, rollocking and epic, and with endless replay value, 10,000 Days is a strong candidate for best album of 06 so far, and can certainly be proudly place on any fans top shelf next to Lateralus or Aenima.

5 Stars

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Comments:Add a Comment 
April 30th 2006


It was released in Australia and Europe earlier.

April 30th 2006


bugger cus i cnt wait!!

April 30th 2006


Album Rating: 5.0

Yes. It was. Atleast make a Tool review a good one mate. Cos i thought that was bad. ^^^

Tarantino's Tarantulas
April 30th 2006


Album Rating: 4.0


No offence to any Europeans or Aussies, but I need some way to vent my frustration.

My friend said it only gonna be 9.99 (Brit pounds, I only have a $ sign on my keyboard) at HMV. If thats true - excellent!

April 30th 2006


Yep, came out yesterday here in Aussieland.
Good review, very well written, but I'd like to see the album settle in for about a week before people start to trying to wrap their heads around it in the context of a review.
Good job anyway

April 30th 2006


Album Rating: 5.0

The Pot starts "painfully?" If by painful you mean remarkable and unbelievably majestic voacals fro MJK then fair enough.

But his rather different (not all doom and gloom low notes) and high speed note changes in his voice are heavenly and only scrapes the skin off the massive body of singing talent that MJK beholds...

April 30th 2006


Album Rating: 3.0

Its an OK album. Not deserving of a classic status however. Compared to Lateralus, 10k is solid, but no where near classic.

3.8/5This Message Edited On 04.30.06

Digging: Julien Baker - Turn Out The Lights

April 30th 2006


I was shocked to see the 0.5 rating up there :p

April 30th 2006


It certainly got my attention.

April 30th 2006


Album Rating: 4.5

I love this album so much right now, I don't think it's better than Lateralus in my books but it's a masterpiece.

April 30th 2006


Album Rating: 3.0

Eh After waiting 5 years for a new tool album im (at least at this stage) fairly disappointed, they have always been a band that can create something new and exciting while retaining a unique sound. 10,000 days sounds like tool but there is not really much here that sounds fresh.

There are some really dodgy lyrics on here although maynard does some nice vocal work, (as always) Drumming is top notch (as always) but i find i really have to listen to hear anything astounding, guitars have been brought forward in the mix to show that Adam is recycling riffs from other albums

This certainly doesnt hold a candle to either Lateralus or Aenima, and at this stage i doubt that the Tr00 tool fans will be basking in it in 2, 3, or 5 years time like they do with previous albums.

I might be feeling cynical because im sick at the moment, or maybe i haven't listened to the album enough yet but this is not a classic album, saying that it will probably still be better than 90% of new music i will hear this year so i give it a three.

meta| |mp
April 30th 2006


Well.. IF anything, the 0.5 rating caught the most attention.. haha

April 30th 2006


Album Rating: 4.0

you can change that rating can't you?

April 30th 2006


Album Rating: 3.5

im gonna get the album tomorro... This Message Edited On 04.30.06

April 30th 2006


Album Rating: 4.5

Definitely a 5, One of my favorite albums by TOOL...such a great release.

black guy
April 30th 2006


Album Rating: 3.0

This is going to get a high rating because it's tool, not because it's that great of an album.

There is some awesome drumming though.This Message Edited On 04.30.06

April 30th 2006


Album Rating: 2.5

agree with black guy, I gave this album a 2.5 just to counter all the 5 classic ratings. Actually I think this is a solid 3/5.

April 30th 2006


Album Rating: 3.5

Judging by 'Vicarious', this album may well be better than 'Lateralus'.

Digging: Converge - The Dusk in Us

April 30th 2006


Album Rating: 2.5

Vicarious is misleading.

April 30th 2006


Album Rating: 2.5

I won't do this again. But I will make an exception for this album cause I can definetly see numerous new users rating it too highly.

Anyhow, I'm not very impressed by the record and the line between 3 and 2.5 is ever so dim.

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