Spring 1997 Tour Reviews

Date: April 3

From: Destruct (destruct@waste.org) Subject: Tool, Wellington Town Hall, April 3 - review Tool - April 3, Town Hall, Wellington, New Zealand -------------------------------------------------- Arrived halfway through the Propeller set, they aren't a bad band really, kinda heavy in the Tool sense, but slightly more poppier. Obviously the crowd was getting impatient, and calls for "Tool" were aplenty. It was quite funny watching Propeller play, the drummer's tiny kit was dwarfed by the megalith of Danny Carey's drumkit, up on a huge stand, covered in a large purple shroud (another dead cultist? ;). Lights up, intermission time. I stood around, listening to the DJ'ed music playing, maybe i'm wrong, but was this music chosen by Tool? Skinny Puppy, Einsturzende Neubauten, The Melvins and Download, knowing Tool's respect for these bands. The soundcheck sounded like "Die Eier Von Satan", but wasn't. "(-) Ions" is played, but all you can feel is the massive low-end rumble, resonating through the body. I've never heard anything close to this, it was more physical than aural. Tool entered, crowd of several thousand packing the Town Hall goes crazy. Maynard is painted completely blue, wearing a lovely pair of boxer shorts, large red dots are geometricily positioned on his head, and quite frankly is as intense as I expected him to be. Thoughout the introduction to "Third Eye" he stares somebody in the crowd. Justin is likewise painted completed dark blue or black, with his signature little red horns on his head. Adam has much hair, and plays much of the night with his head down, so we don't get to see his face too often, but when we do, it looks like he's enjoying himself as much as he could. Probably Danny matches Maynards intensity, notsomuch burning holes in individual members of the crowd's heads, but with his intense concentration on smashing skins. These four guys basically spell C-O-O-L. I can't remember the order of the set list too well, hopefully somebody else will publish that. "Third Eye" was dramatic, and got the crowd going. Maynard intones "Well-in-ton" and a roar sends plaster flaking from the roof (well I imagine so :). I think "Stinkfist" was next, the obvious crowd pleaser, many crowd-surfers etc... "Eulogy" and "Jimmy" were played, Maynard dances like, well, like nothing i've ever seen, he writhes and twists around the stage like a monkey on a chain, dramatically pained expressions distort his face. Maynard says something like "this is our first time to New Zealand" and the crowd again licks his butt with applause. "Prison Sex" is around here somewhere, "this song is about anal sex" is MJ's introduction. Big song, I see one guy get removed by a bouncer. "Fourty Six and 2" isn't so far away, the giant sheet that is the backdrop, has all sorts of weird shapes projected onto it. Perhaps the most impressive part of the concert comes in here, when Maynard sings "my shadow...", a red light is beamed on him from the left side of the stage, and his shadow is illuminated on the wall to the right of the stage!!!! this was most cool, I wonder how many people noticed this? I spent several minutes just watching his shadow. "H" was also played sometime, but didn't make a huge impression on me. "Pushit" got the people moving, sometimes collasping. Next up is an impressive long jam... I figure it went over the ten minute mark. Extreme noise is created by Adam, Maynard disappears to ground level, I cant see what he's doing, somebody up on the balcony level could fill me in here. This long, noisy, industrial feedback session becomes a showcase for Danny Carey, drummer extrodinaire. Sounded improvised, much skill here, Tool are great. This jam metamorphed into "Sober" another crowd pleaser is well rewarded, definetely one of Tool's nicest songs, beautiful in fact! "This is our last song... [big pause, booing] ... off our last album [wild applause]", "Opiate" is up next... Maynard gets up and has a little rave about the song being about "Unity and peace... not violence... but unity and anger... lots of anger". "Opiate" has a driving force unlike anything i've heard from a rock band, but about to be outdone a few minutes later... Tool leave the stage for several minutes, the encore is inevitable but the chanting begins. Tool return, and everybody knows what to expect. "Aenima" is by far my favourite song from the album, and the one I guess many of the crowd waited for. The entire Town Hall was moving, people jumping and down like crazy, intense like the dictionary defination. The song to top it all off is well chosen, lots of people were learning to swim. But it was all over too soon! Lights came up, and Tool leave the stage... Maynard flashing a peace sign. Danny throws a few drumsticks out into the audience. All around, i'm glad I went, a great live act. Maynard's charisma is scary, i'm sure he stared right at (through) me for a good 45 secs, slightly unerving, but cool. Danny earns much respect too for his power and skills... he's tall isn't he? But his drumkit is bigger :) Lengthwise, very good... 1 1/2 hours. One of the few rock bands around today that i'd go to see... of course they live up to their reputation.

From: (bruce.norris@vuw.ac.nz) Subject: Wellington, NZ 3/4/97 Review Man, best concert I've been to in a while. Doors opened at 8.00, but as I was busy across town I came in at about 9.10, and Tool were already on! They were just finishing up with Third Eye, which was their first song anyhow, so I was happy (well, not *happy*, just less pissed off:-) Anyhow, set-list was (I think...) Third Eye Stinkfist 46 and 2 Prison Sex Eulogy H Pushit Sober Opiate Ænema Great show, a lot of energy, and man can that Maynard throw his body around. He looked like a puppet with a spring shoved up its ass :-). Very cool. Anyway, things of note: -Didn't speak much. Before Prison Sex, Maynard said something like " This is our first tour to New Zealand, and this song, like all our songs, is about anal sex." Also, gave a brief explanation about Opiate being not about hatred or violence, but about moving on, making choices and "a lot of anger". The crowd just went apeshit when opiate was announced. - Before Aenima, when the guys were all just milling about on stage, doing the usual, some stupid motherfucker back in the audience somewhere threw a full 1 litre bottle of water at the stage, and it hit Maynard in the side of the head. The crowd booed stupid motherfucker, but I didn't see if anything happened. Maynard was pretty pissed (rightfully so) and he went over to the others at the side of the stage, and told them what had happened, then he walked off. The others all came out and just started playing, and then (to loud cheers) Maynard walked back on, and started with the "hey hey hey". He sung all of Aenima standing stock-still, with his back to the audience and when he finished he just dropped the microphone and walked off :-(. Danny threw his sticks into the audience (which I just missed out on), and Justin threw a full water bottle into the audience - he wasn't very happy. Man, it pisses me off that some stupid asshole can just bring the whole night down like that. I hope this doesn't mean they won't play here again... Anyway, while the atmosphere was good, they fucking rocked. If they never play Wellington again, I'd gladly put on my travelling shoes. Andrew S. (Piggy-backing on my flat-mates account)

From: mmr@actrix.gen.nz Hate to be picky but I wanted to quickly comment that re: the April 3rd concert in the Wellington Town Hall.. The song after Eulogy was not H, but Jimmy... [Kabir's note - I have no idea who's right.]