the tool page

this changes everything

This site is no longer being updated. See here for details. Follow me here and here for updates. Thank you for 22 great years.


select a year

A TOOL-Related Article

Publication: New York Daily News

Date: November 23, 1996

Transcribed by

 title: Tool's Metal Melts Onstage
author: Jim Farber

It's not every metal singer who's named Maynard, but the frontman of Tool 
isn't like the other macho metal players on the planet. 
Onstage at Roseland on Thursday, Maynard James Keenan appeared nude 
except for some foul-looking boxer shorts that resembled a soiled diaper. 
He was also painted entirely blue.
Lurching about the stage, ever-hunched and in shadow, Keenan seemed less 
the usual metal brute than some freak looking for a place to hurl. 
His character seemed to literalize a common metal theme-the contamination 
of the individual at the hands of an unjust world. Tool's music worked 
just as hard at being unsettling- with equally unappetizing results. 
The L.A. -based foursome first shopt to fame in '94 with a far more 
exciting sound: a twist on textbook metal. Fashioning more fitful, chunky 
and unmelodic riffs, Tool joined bands like Helmet and Paw in a new 
movement to give wheezing old metal a fresh sense of alarm. 
But at Roseland, Tool went for an artsier style, echoing the new one 
found in it's disappointing new album, "Aenima" (which last month shot to 
No. 2 in Billboard it's first week out). 
Live, the band seemed hellbent on destroying any momentum in the music. 
By isolating the riffs in curt bursts and setting the drums in lockstep 
with the guitars, Tool eliminated all syncopation and groove. Instead of 
staggering chords to push a song ahead, they slammed each chord into the 
To throw even more monkey wrenches into the evening, the band devoted 
tortuously long sections to squawking feedback and random noodling. 
Small wonder even the most dedicated moshers had trouble slam-dancing to 
the stuff.
Still, not every number fell flat. The band's early hit, "Sober", offered 
a catchier riff and firmer rhythmic structure. But too much of the rest 
forged some terrible brand of art-metal---like a cross between Pink Floyd 
at it's most indulgent and horror movie soundtracks at their most dire. 


----I am not Jim Farber! These opinions do not reflect my own. I attended 
the concert on Nov. 21st ( I didn't meet Kabir though, or Jim Farber for 
that matter) and it was amazing!
----Accompanying this article was a portion of a band photo (the one w/ 
the dog)
Only one member of the band was shown. The text under it read: "Axeman: 
Tool's Danny Carey."  However, it only took a split second to realize 
that it was not Danny Carey it was Adam Jones. Jim Farber's credibility 
crumbled even before I read the article. If you want a real review of 
this concert and all the others, check them out in the ' 96 Fall Tour 
Review, written by fans who know who the band members are and who know 
more than one song by them.

kabir/akhtar | kabir@t.d.n