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A TOOL-Related Article

Publication: Los Angeles Weekly

Date: October 25-31, 1996

Transcribed by Jeff (

Subject: Recent review in LA Weekly of Tool show Oct. 16 in Pomona

  page : 113
  title: Tool, Failure at the Glass House, Pomona Arts Colony, Oct 16

        Failure proved themselves one of LA's more provocative acts with the
droney miasma from their latest release, "Fantastic Planet."  A bit of
advice to front man Ken Andrews: turn down your volume - the watery elfin
jangle is too refined a texture to translate at so many decibels.
        Since this was the first performance on Tool's Aenima tour, one felt
damned privileged to be in the heart of the Pomona Arts Colony as the band's
Maynard Keenan strode purposefully onstage in biker shorts and a freshly
shorn head.  His shrill tenor ignited the anthemic "Stinkfist" as he
two-fisted the song with a regular mike in one hand and a voice-modulating
mike in the other; things got David Lynchian when, during "Eulogy," he did a
kazoolike squawk through a hand-held voive modulator that looked like a hair
dryer.  When this epic guitar-scape ended, Keenan swigged his water bottle
and said, "Not bad for a bunch of old men."  Doomsayer though he may be,
Keenan had a peculiar kind of humor, revealing, "A friend of mine went
looking for love on Santa Monica Boulevard and found crowded pants," before
launching into "Hooker With a Penis."
        Keenan's pelvic oscillations notwithstanding, Tool's complex
prog-metal is far too busy to permit standard rocker-dude hyperkinesis.
Danny Carey is a drummer who understands that less is more: the hard-rock
staple of chronic cymbal wash never interferes with the subtle tom-tom fills
and signature hi-hat hisses he incorporates into just about every song.  And
though Tool's menacing, muscular tone doesn't align easily with a phlegmatic
dispostion, Adam Jones was a decidedly shoegazing guitarist whose face
surfaced only once; bassist Justin Chancellor, imported from the U.K. band
Peach, was a similar fixture, deftly plying his recently learned bass lines
- an especially daunting task on "Aenima", gnarly, bastardized gestalt of a
recording that it is.
        When Keenan announced the last song of the night, the crowd issued a
collective whine, to which he responded, "Hey, we're not Green Day, so it'll
be more than three minutes long."  Thus the band tore into the sardonic
"Opiate" for their set's coda.  At six minutes, it was one of Tool's shorter
songs, but still, the man kept his word. (Andrew Lentz)

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