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The Tool Page: An Article

Publication: The Orange County Register

Date: August, 1997

Transcribed by
Will W. (

  page: S-4
author: Ben Wener

     (Contributor's note:This is basically an article which negatively
reviews pretty much all of Lollapalooza (the August 8th show at which i
was at), and especially Tool and what Mr.Keenan had to say about
Lollapalooza, and pretty much blamed Tool for: haveing such a sucky set,
and for Lolla sucking so much...he must not have been watching the same
show as I)
     There was no applause, no onslaught of approving screams, mostly just
unenthusiastic murmuring and a smattering of chuckels when it was said. 
     "This is probably rhe closest thing to an alternative festival
Lollapaloozahas ever been," declared Tool frontman Maynard James Keenean,
all dolled up in smeared lipstick and fake bosoms (don't ask) during his
band's expertly executed but terminally dull set at the festival's stop at
Blockbuster Pavillion on Friday. 
     Keenan must have been confusing his own old-hat lyrical message of
nonconformity with that of the festival- which is no message at all. If he
thinks the best musical alternative for 1997 is ahaphazard grab bag of
firmly established artists (Tool, Jam es, Snoop Doggy Dogg)  trifles on
their way to nowhere (Failure, Julian and Damien Marley), one national
sensation (elctro-giants Prodigy) and one true pioneer (trip-hop wonder
Tricky) -- well, he sure hasn't been paying much attention to what's
really happening in music these days. 
     Certainly Lollapalooza hasn't been about being an alternative for
years. Nor has it ever been about cohesive portrait of popular music. It's
about marketing, moneymaking and shameless self-promotion, and (as far as
the kids are concerned) partying bi g-time. 
     And, occasionaly, some great tunes. Nothing else. So it's not really
fair to pick on the Tool master. It's not his fault that Lollapalooza, in
its seventh year. It's not (all) his fault that the closest thing to an
alternative this year was on the se cond stage (again) but that its lineup
was nearly as uninspired as that of the main stage. It's not his fault
that the voices in this outing were predominantly male (again), the sight
of females reduced to back-up singers and scantily clad dancers. 
     But it is his band's fault as permanent headliners--Prodigy closed
the show, but it's only on the tour for a few weeks--for not demanding a
sharper bill of more adventurous. (Even Metallica had the brains to insist
that the now-defunct Soundgarden, a n established but often mesmerizing
live act, be added to last year's lineup to save it from ruin.) 
     And it is his fault for turning in an enormously bombastic set of
sonic nonsense that would have been more at home at Ozzfest or the
Monsters of Rock tour of the '80s. Though not exactly wallowing in
bad-metal excess-- for one, guitarist Adam Jones i s a gifted and
intuitive melodicist, if also the sole saving grace of the bands sound--
Tool's 80-minute mystical mishmash was a terribly one-dimensional creation
(even with an excellent overhauling of Led Zepplin's "No Quarter") that
wore out its welcome quickly.

Posted to t.d.n: 08/12/97 05:03:20