Spring 1997 Tour Reviews

Date: March 14

From: Mack Kenamond (kenamond@lanl.gov) Subject: March 14 Tool Concert Review Kabir, The Melvins were a kick. The guitarist/singer, pom-pom hair and all put on an energetic show. The bassist cracked me up with his inter-song one-liners like, "Sounded like that one had a little devil on it." or "I'm gonna drop to my knees and raise my right hand." He was dressed like a "Far Side" cowboy/amish guy with brown slacks, suspenders, white shirt and plane, brown, farmer hat. When the band finished, the drummer got up and was wearing a pair of speedo pants (must've undressed while behind the drums). As he walked off stage, he picked up shirts that had been thrown on stage, wiped his ass with them, blew his nose on them and chucked them back into the crowd. There was some group-pushing and shoving near the end of the intermission. The intensity built as the lights dimmed and the "smoke box" began to play on the two, symmetric video screens above the stage. Dark grey, Stinkfist-video-like mannequins, three or four, were posed in contorted positions on and between the equipment on stage. Other than them and what was playing on the video screens, there were no on-stage indications of who was even going to be playing. The moshpit was boiling as the intro windlike and heartbeat sounds of Third Eye swelled. The band just kinda walked out on stage and everyone went nuts. Maynard was blue with boxers and red quarter-sized spots down the middle of his chest and from the crown of his head down to just over his right eye. At first, he looked entirely blue, but lighting changes illuminated the bright red spots. Justin had peach/pink/mauve/blue pale colored quarter-sized spots trailing around his body and had the devil's horns hair. Adam was dressed normally and unpainted (from what I could tell) as was Danny (but shirtless). Maynard introduced their new bassist and claimed (as with other shows) that Justin was from New Mexico (missed the exact city). Adam remained virtually motionless the entire concert - just staring into space and nailing the riffs and chords perfectly. They played Stinkfist second but no one but me yelled chickenweasel afterward. I briefly lost touch with reality during Swamp Song. I just stared at the video screens during the almost-calm instrumental section with a smile on my face - that I was where I was, hearing what I was hearing. The crowd (well, those of us front and center, anyway) intensity almost doubled for 46+2 and didn't let up until the end of the show. In the middle of a song (forget which one), someone tossed a plastic water bottle about 100 ft and hit one of Danny's cymbals just above and to the right of his head. He snapped his head to the side in surprise but played on with only the slightest hitch in tempo. Sometime in the concert Maynard started a little speech about religion and sex. He finished with something like "When I die I want to die fuckin'." Much to my delight, they seemed to play every song that I wanted them to play. One very lucky fellow snuck up onto the stage and dove into the masses, and everyone cheered and made jealous remarks. At one point I realized that the video screen was showing two camels getting it on. Brought a smile to my face, anyway; it appeared that the female camel was moaning. Again, there was an extended, instrumental intro to Sober. Adam sat on stage and made guitar sounds, Maynard crouched center stage and stared, Justin provided eerie deep resonant bass sounds, and, all the while, Danny pounded out the rhythm with the Sober "feel." Maynard said that he had heard people requesting that they play Hooker with a Penis. Lots of cheers (including me). Then he says he is going to give us the short version and says "T-shirts and posters can be bought over there (pointing to the shirt booth)," and laughs. Ha ha, Maynard. They announced their last song and played Opiate. Although they would play one more afterward, nobody knew that and everyone moshed harder than ever. I know I was pretty wasted by the end. They began to leave stage and huddled near the right side. They finally came back onto stage and Maynard said something like, "This one's about water . . . and California sinking into the ocean. Hey Hey Hey Hey Hey Hey . . ." Appropriate to end with that song, I guess :) Setlist was: Third Eye Stinkfist Swamp Song 46 + 2 Eulogy Prison Sex H. Pushit Sober Opiate Aenema A guy and his girlfriend were walking behind me between songs and the girl said, "quit it!" and the guy said, "well somebody pushed me." I turned around and said, "Imagine that." What a concert. Mack