the tool page

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The Tool Page: An Article

Publication: Winnipeg Sun

Date: May, 1994

Transcribed by
Scott Nystrom (

  page: 24
 title: Angry Tool boxes Muchmusic's ears
author: James O'Connor

Prison Sex is misunderstood, says Danny Carey.  And don't ask the drummer
for Tool to "Punch Much" - he just might take MuchMusic's slogan to heart. 
    It seems the Toronto-based cable music channel won't play the Los
Angeles band's controversial video of its latest single - Prison Sex, from
the band's debut LP Undertow - as often as the artists would like. 
    "I don't know what's up with them," Carey spits down the phone line
from Calgary recently. 
    "I can't understand how they would find our video more offensive than
all those people with sexy girls and dry humping and all that stuff.  It
just doesn't make any sense to me - I just don't understand what their
logic is behind it.  We picked an iss ue - the cycle of abuse that happens
in families - to get a point across, and they label it too (much)." 
    The video was painstakingly shot on 16-millimetre film, shooting clay
figures a frame at a time. 
    It doesn't feature any graphic sexual images, but the scenes are quite
dark, vivid and disturbing. 
    The music is right from Tool's moody, angst-filled box.
    Singer Maynard James Keenan's painful wail oozes frustration and anger.
    "Do unto others what has been done to me / Do unto others what has
been done to you," he sings. "I need you to feel this / I need you to make
me whole. 
    "You look so precious / You look so precious / You look so precious." 
    A MuchMusic spokesperson says the band hasn't been banned from the
various levels of rotational play, although any veejay airing the vid
would have to introduce it with a warning. 
    "There's nothing stopping it from being played in regular rotation
other than the subject matter," Bill Bobek says. 
    He said the vid has been shown on the channel's City Limits program
and will also be featured Friday at 11 p.m. on Too Much for Much, followed
by a discussion of its content. 
    "(Prison Sex) is two months old and it has been played on City
Limits," he says. 
    Carey says MTV in the United States has played the vid frequently.
    It took a lot of work to get it done," he says of producing the video.
    "But I think it's worth it because it gets the point across."
    And with all the fury and evil and at-odds-with-the-world attitude in
the band's music is also visualized in Undertow's graphic liner art. 
    There's a lovely picture of a swine impaled on a bed of forks, with
the album's name shaved in its hairy flank. 
    Then there's a blue-toned picture of a very, very out-of-shape woman,
a naked man, a needle-filled face and a man in a very unsettling bondage
    Carey says guitarist Adam Jones is the band's art director.
    "We try to enforce the mood with the images," Carey says.
    The band was formed in 1988 by Jones, who moved to L.A. from Illinois
and enlisted Keenan, Carey and bassist Paul D'Amour. 
    Carey says the on-the-edge tunes ate theraputic for the players.
    "They're about trying to work things out for ourselves," he says.
    "Working out personal problems and hopefully presenting them in a way
that people can appreciate at a lot of levels and get something out of

Posted to t.d.n: 07/07/97 11:24:04