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The Tool Page: An Article


Date: May, 2001

Transcribed by
David (

 title: Tool Tour Kickoff: Long Delay, Havoc Over Tickets Frustrates...
author: Joe Silva

Tool Tour Kickoff: Long Delay, Havoc Over Tickets Frustrates Atlanta Fans

May 16, 2001, 4:25 pm PT

Once you got past the guys in clown makeup and women's underwear, or the sea of disappointed fans caught 
up in a two-hour counterfeit ticket scam, it was, to quote the ticket stub, just another "evening with Tool." 

But what's a few years in absentia, plus two hours? Nothing, to the rabid horde that gathered at Atlanta's 
Tabernacle Tuesday (May 15) night to celebrate the release of Lateralus, the first Tool LP since 1996's Aenima. 
Fans literally pissed in their pants and willfully allowed their cars to be sledgehammered for a complimentary 
view of hard rock's MIA supergroup. 

And while some chose to take out their frustration with the extended ticket delay by bum-rushing the doors at 
will call, others let go with an occasional flurry of "boos" inside the venue as the night wore on. Had there been 
an opener, the crowd of nearly 3,000 would have probably been fine with the delay, but the stage remained bare 
until nearly 11 p.m. when the lights finally dimmed. 

Maynard James Keenan, dressed in full leather and zero hair, walked to center stage and struck a quasi-fascist 
pose to the delight of all before him. The crowd responded with a sea of two-finger devil salutes before guitarist 
Adam Jones tore into "The Grudge." After the first break in the music, Keenan wryly stared into the audience 
and asked, "Where the fuck have you people been? We've been waiting here for hours. Thank you. Goodnight."

From that point forward, the band entered into a stiff competition between the projected visuals playing above 
and behind the stage for the remainder of the evening. At times, the band's trademark disturbing images were 
an appropriate complement to Keenan's psyche-shredded lyrics. This was particularly true during "Stinkfist," 
where the twitching faceless couple from the song's video was an apropos addition to the pummeling 
soundtrack. But, with the band itself doing little onstage for the majority of the night, the images often served 
as a distraction from the performance. 
Keenan menacingly weaved back and forth as he sang, but the rest of the outfit stood mostly stock still and let 
the footage of tortured nudes, writhing human pupas, and excursions down filthy computer-generated toilets do 
the entertaining. And since Tool does not believe in encores, the only break the band enjoyed was a mid-set 
pause where it unveiled the video for the new album's first single, "Schism." 

Whether it was the lengthy delay or the limited amount of onstage action, those not crammed toward the front 
of the stage often took to talking amongst themselves when not being assaulted by Jones' triple Marshall stack 
amp rig. To its credit, Tool delivered such favorites as "Sober" and "Aenima" with tremendous verve and 
precision. One or two onstage band huddles aside, Tool did not appear as if its hiatus had much impact on its 
ability to "rawk." 

But apart from Keenan's occasional thank yous for the fans'patience and a warning to be wary of ticket 
counterfeiters, Tool seemed more than willing at the moment to allow volume and its graphical wizardry to 
substitute for any truly tangible amount of audience interaction. For a group that's "technically" been away as 
long as Tool has, what could have been one of the biggest rock events of 2001, seemed more like a shill for 
high-end multimedia. 

-- Joe Silva

Posted to t.d.n: 05/17/01 09:38:20