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The Tool Page: An Article

Publication: Guitar World

Date: March, 2001

Transcribed by
Lydian Ali (LAFataL84@aol.com)


  page: 39
 title: Tool Salival Review
author: Don Kaye

Here's the Tool article from the March 2001 issue of Guitar World. 
Guitar World still manages to mess something up though. Instead of 
calling Danny Carey the singer, they talk about the hidden 
song "maynard's dead." ...funny

Tool
Salival
(Volcano Entertainment)
Three Stars


Tool has not only survived the commercial death of "alternative rock" 
but prospered despite an almost complete rejection of tried-and-true 
music industry marketing practices. The band has eschewed nearly all 
press, radio station promotional visits, MTV appearances and 
traditional image-building videos, as well as create heavy music that 
doesn't fit neatly into standards of genre, length and simplicity.
	It seems, however, that this unique individuality has only 
enhanced the band's mysterious public profile, earning them a huge 
and devoted following. That following's patience has been sorely 
tested in the last few years by a protracted legal battle with their 
record label that kept Tool from recording a follow-up to 1996's 
masterful Aenima. With the contractual dispute finally settled last 
year, work was delayed further by frontman Maynard James Keenan's 
unexpected side jaunt with A Perfect Circle.
	Perhaps realizing that their fans need something to keep them 
interested, Tool has issued this handsomely packaged boxed set, which 
includes a DVD containing all the band's videos, a CD featuring five 
live tracks and three studio excursions, and a 56-page full-color 
booklet. Like everything else in  the Tool catalog, the package is 
cryptic, minimal in information or context and deliberately anti-
commercial. There are no live versions of the band's hits on the CD; 
instead we get a few obscure album cuts, one previously unrecorded 
song ("Merkaba") and a cover of "You Lied," from bassist Justin 
Chancellor's previous band, Peach.
	The live cuts emphasize Tool's sonic and performing 
precision, especially the extended "Third Eye," and the furious "Part 
of Me," which harkens back to the band's debut EP, Opiate. One of the 
best live heavy rock bands of the last decade, Tool is never less 
than flawless, and the concert recordings here capture the perfection 
accurately. They also capture the band's sometimes drawn-out artiness 
on a meandering version of "Pushit" and the aforementioned "You Lied."
	Two of the three studio tracks are, frankly, 
throwaways. "Harry Manback Pt. II" is a sequel to Aenima's disturbing 
phone-message track, yet it isn't half as creepy, while 'Los Angeles 
Municipal Court" merely repeats a loop underneath a parody of one of 
those hopelessly complicated and impersonal phone menu systems we've 
all suffered through. The only real musical recordings are a cover of 
Zeppelin's "No Quarter," which is appropriatly Tool-ized and even 
eerier and moodier in some ways than the original, and a surprise 
acoustic track at the end of the disc, which seems to be 
called "Maynard's Dead." Both this and "L.A. Municipal Court" 
emphasize the band's little-acknowledged and dry-as-dust sense of 
humor.
	As for the DVD, once you get past the somewhat difficult 
navigation menu (which includes at least one button that leads 
absolutely nowhere), you'll find the band's four groundbreaking 
videos, truly among the most disturbing ever filmed. Remixed in Dolby 
Digital 5.1 (although there are very few surround effects) and 
delivered in crystal-clear video, the clips for "Sober" and "Prison 
Sex" use grotesque stop-motion animation to create truly harrowing 
imagery. The video for "Stinkfist" raises the bar even further, this 
time using distorted human figres in puppet-like fashion, resulting 
in even more nightmarish effects. An added bonus is the button that 
leads you to the early video for "Hush," from Opiate, an altogether 
more conventional affair clearly made before the band solidified 
their creative concepts. While Salival ends up a little sparse in 
content, it does succeed as a re-introduction to the band and a 
reasonably priced collector's item for diehard fans. The real deal, 
however--the band's third full-length album--is just a few months 
away. --Don Kaye

Posted to t.d.n: 02/02/01 07:34:46