concert reviews firsthand, immediate, from the heart

Review written by: Adrian Tyler (
Review posted on: 04/26/02 11:42:13 ET

This was this reviewer's 2nd Tool show

Tool in Wollongong The Grudge (the scream cut four bars short) Stinkfist (With long amazing impro section before the end) [good evening....(yes it is!)...for those of you who a wondering this is not a britney spears concert...but adam's tits grow larger and smaller in time to the music...] Forty Six & Two ----------------- (not sure about the exact order of these songs) H Schism Parabol Parabola Sober ---------------- Disposition Reflection Video Interval [parabol/a] Triad (with melvin drummer and osseus labyrint) [thanks to support acts] Ænima [good feeling speech and band huddle] Lateralus (extended drums on ending) [Danny hurling his drum covers frisbee style all the way to the second tier seats!!] There were several extended sections of electronic effect filler throughout the concert (people always seem to quote them as "-ions" when there not really at all), with one longer piece using Danny in conjunction with Adam and Justin for some awesome atmospherics. Justin was quite animated during the show, employing the "Maynard Stomp" as swaying regularly.....Adam as reserved as usual though....Maynard and Danny, well... just read all the other thousand reviews on Toolshed. As a whole the band seemed relaxed...quite a few chats between band members during the performance.

Review written by: ms tanya jones (yeah i wish) ( Review posted on: 04/26/02 13:03:15 ET

This was this reviewer's 5th Tool show

first of all: set list The Grudge Stinkfist Forty Six & Two Parabol + Parabola Schism H Merkaba + Sober Disposition + Reflection Intermission (parabola vid) Triad Aenema Lateralus Wollongong, as expected was the smallest of the NSW venues and in my opinion the best gig all round. The security was pretty low and considering that i bought my ticket this morning and had seats i was pretty fucking stoked when we realised they werent using wrist bands/stamps - so i got floor! For all of you who went to Newcastle think... smaller! But although it was small the intimacy was very much appreciated. The floor was tight, but id say probably more than 50% of the seating wasnt filled - this how ever did not cause any less of a performace from our boys. It was the same set up - the 2 big projected screens and maynards little screen.. this never seems to get boring :) same old - that TRACK we all know it now... its a good track, bit of droney build up. lights down. 3 lateralus circles - crowd goes nuts :) First was the Grudge... we could tell this because they pretty much all came out at the same time.... justin, then danny then adam and then maynard. maynard was in his ever sexy black leather? pants, black top and oakleys again and im pretty sure adam and justin were wearing the same shirts as last time as well. danny had his regular black singlet. Began with the regular moans and groans, 4 drum stick beats and we were away. Powerful and energetic + a very enthused crowd. There was a surprisingly large 'mosh pit' this gig. At Newcastle, bigger venue, more people but the mosh was actually quite small. This mosh actually took up a good half of the dance floor, but wasnt too rough/werent alot of surges - i was standing on the outskirts of the mosh and i wasnt in danger of getting swept in which is always nice and relaxing. Grudge bascially went straight into Stinkfist - a few ions here and there then the regular stinkfist intro. This song always seems to get the NRG going - justin seemed to get into this one a lot tonight which is always good to hear. Maynard was dancing quite a bit through stinkfist, he kept moving towards the front of his platform throughout most of the first half of the gig. usually its just kinda profile view singing into the mic on the side, but he was standing towards the front, singing straight out towards the crowd a lot, looking up through the mosh to the seats which was lovely, gave him a more human feel i spose. He graced us with a little conversation after stinkfist "good evening" his usual greeting. he then followed that by a little alteration to the acid jokes with "for those of you who've taken a wrong turn......... this is not a britney spears concert....... although adams tits will change size in time with the beat.... *did that squeezing tits motion with his hands and laughed at adam*..... or Camilla's." then after a little feedback and mucking around they started parabol. i was absolutely STOKED because there had been no sign on parabol this tour (i dont think?) so it was quite exciting as the build up from parabol to parabola is absolutely fabulous and i think a little is taken away from parabola if its little brother isnt there to give it that little booster. so it was muchly gooood. moving right along to schism. i think this tour schism is one of the most appreciated songs... every time ive left a NSW gig ive heard someone saying something aloong the lines of "fuck! schism was so good!" but yes it definately lived up to its regular standards as well as OE in their regular nakedness. the chick behind me was qutie excited when she worked out they were naked. hah. maynard pretty much topped talking after this... throughout this gig we could all hear his voice start to feel the strain of night after night of performances... he seems to be drinking more and more water during the sets. after schism came my ultimate favourite and i will definately hold my bias and say this was the best song of the set. im probably swayed by personal opinion, but i definately feel that the energy in this song was at a peak... you could feel it rushing from person to person this infection stream of good vibes. fabulous. highlight of this song would have to be the build up "i dont mind, i dont mind I DONT MIND" - maynard basically whispered the first, sang the second and absolutely let the third rip leading into the musical interlude. what can i say? perfect. next was merkaba and sober. merkaba was a fabulous intro into sober because you really dont know whats to come! its got such a mellow relaxed feel to it.. just fabulous. i think sober was the best recieved by the audience out of all the songs... the anticipation and build up was fabulous so when the crowd heard what song was going to be played they were quite excited. i think sober pretty much went off almost as much as H did. maynard was pretty into it as well, which always helps! disposition and reflection were next... its always a nice little kick back couple - i think its quite effective to have the two, then intermission and then triad because the anticipation of expecting triad just makes it all that much better when you get to hear it. they were both fantastic as usual, although im pretty sure it was this song that maynard was holding a note and his voice faultered once or twice. no negative implications. i think it makes him more human. intermission. parabola vid. yeah. ok. i sat down :) triad. mm. triad. dale from the melvins adding to danny's fine efforts on drums, once again and OE doing their upside- down stuff... those 2 are amazing, seriously. i didnt know the human body was capable of such feats! during the parabola video i think someone had either accidently turned the volume up more, or had an evil sceme to blow everyone ear drums and make a fortune on hearing aids. im positive it got louder after the vid, so triad was louder and very very powerful. maynard seemed to be moving around quite a lot behind the screen on his guitar this time. i noticed he moved around a lot more than the other two NSW gigs - but it could have been the angle i was sitting at. triad finished - maynard comes back on.. thanks dale.. OE get down off their ropes.... maynard thanks them. i think ive figured the guys name is eric, but i still didnt catch the chicks name. kinda did nothing for a minute... got back up on the platform.... looked out into the crowd and started the (and i really dont know how to describe it) breathing/hhhh noise at the start of aenema. crowd went NUTS. i went NUTS. VERY excited to be hearing aenema - i was almost POSITIVE it would be opiate again, and i was almost glad.. i was getting a bit tired of it. it was fabulous - i dont think i remember maynard changing ne of the "fret for your's" this time.. im pretty sure everything was a la album, but dont quote me on that one. clearly one of the most outstanding songs of the evening - possibly of the 3 NSW gigs ive seen now. ok.. so we're getting to the end and maynard walks towards the kit, so we know its lateralus and thats it. his final conversation for the night - "thank you for sharing this moment with us.... we hope we've been some kind of inspiration or catalyst for something positive or creative and we'll see you again soon" - good reaction from the crowd :) lateralus seems to be the most effective closing. i think perhaps its the message/ "spiral out, keep going" lyrics that just make this the perfect way to go out with an almighty bang. it was tight, clean and the final few bars were VERY nice. overall, the band were very into it tonight, every gig this tour they seem to be getting more and more relaxed which is great quality wise. they were very tight, and they seemed to be talking between themselves a bit. a few times maynard walked over to adam and talked to him about something - he was pointing but ive no idea what they were on about. there didnt seem to be any problems we knew about. as far as venues are concerned - i say DEFINATELY small venues are the go. i already knew this from viewing my london astoria bootleg vid, but this confirms for my own eyes that there is nothing like a small intimate tool gig. well worth the dosh. hopefully they will keep to their little message "see you all soon" like last time and come back soon :) what could be better? best wished to everyone who still has gigs to come you will enjoy it :) tanya

Review written by: Wooly ( Review posted on: 04/26/02 20:22:44 ET

This was this reviewer's 4th Tool show

great show much better than Wedsnday night in Sydney. With the 2 shows combined i actually saw every song that the guys are playing lately with the exception of intolerance which is irritating cause its one of my favourites. The Above playlist was acturate as far as i can remember The crowd was pretty well behaved even though it was obvious that many barely even knew who toll were and just went to take off their shirts and act like fuckwits. highlights: H it went off and the fans at the front of the stage were fully into it and drowned out maynard on the "I Don't Mind" OE were really good again for the previous reviewer i think their names are Hanna and Mark. Lows: Countless shirtless idiots who at one stage started one of thosestupid circles that they do at punk concerts. i guess it works at a punk show because noone wants to watch the shit bands or listen to the shit music anyway. it however is wildly out of place at a tool show. why would you fish out $80 abd not watch the greatest band in the world. beats me

Review written by: Jack ( Review posted on: 04/26/02 21:19:20 ET

This was this reviewer's 3rd Tool show

Hey, awesome concert an so on... I'm just going to disagree with teh above posts - i thought that the atmosphere was better at Sydney, and so was the sound quality. Maynard's voice almost got lost in the muddy bass, and he's definently feeling the strain of touring. I do believe the setlist was better though - they seem to be doing opiate/undertow and lateralus or aenima and lateralus sets, I think they should mix them up a bit. And the crowd at Wollongong was also not as 'hardcore' as Sydney, well at least tehy didn't appear to be. Nothing could detract from the show though, it was fantastic. By the way, they played Merkaba before H., not Sober, which is strange. Sober had a new intro, which I hadn't heard before, but it may have had bits from Merkaba. The intro before H. was definently Merkaba though.

Review written by: maynard (-) Review posted on: 04/28/02 05:44:39 ET

This was this reviewer's - Tool show

Im just apologizing for the fuck up in sober at the concert. -Maynard

Review written by: Emma (opernimalus@hotmail.con) Review posted on: 04/28/02 06:16:49 ET

This was this reviewer's 4th Tool show

Pure entertainment. On the barrier all night, right in front of Justin. This band just keeps on improving with every show. Highlights: Maynards' inclusion of some Elvis lyrics during stinkfist (a verse from Suspicious Minds, go read the faq section G if you wanna know more) Not many ppl actually picked this one during the concert..... Catching Justins' setlist which he threw into the crowd after missing the bottle of water he threw to my part of the crowd (P.S Justin you are a legend, thankyou for your inspiration) Osseus Labrint; amazing. And finally those crazy muthafuckers who stage-dived across 3 meters onto the crowd, Adam was laughing so hard..... Lowlights: Security staff sucked arse, completely unprepared. This is not a Live concert people, there will be moshing (Ju Jitzu we love you!) No cloak room, why not?? Being unable to find my way outta Woolongong!! Ever heard of signs people??? It's all well and good that Tool have become so popular that they have the capacity to pull big crowds and fill stadiums but after this show I realised it doesn't really compare to the intimacy of a smaller venue. Their big group hug at the end sent the crowd nuts, good to see an original band who remain so tight and true to their art. Thanks for the experiance.

Review written by: jewboy ( Review posted on: 05/01/02 07:38:07 ET

This was this reviewer's 5th Tool show

Well, I traveled a couple thousand miles for the 3 NSW shows and they were well worth it. Newcastle had poor acoustics but I didn't care, just happy to see them again since Hawaii. The Sydney show had the most band interaction with the crowd, damn, The Patient sounded so fucking crisp. But for me Wollongong was the best, I left my seat for Lateralus and went down to the open platform area so I could let off some energy without pissing off the people behind me, that happened alot in Sydney(sorry, gotta let the music do what it's gonna do). Anyone who saw me probably thought I was having a fucking seizure. I 'm really glad I moved, cuz I caught Danny's Remo skin at the end. Die hard Tool fans, you can take comfort in the fact that a fellow Toolophile made the catch and not just some lucky prick(which I definitely am). Anyways, glad to have shared the experience with everyone. Love, the Jew.

Review written by: marchy ( Review posted on: 05/02/02 20:03:46 ET

This was this reviewer's 1st Tool show

just a few little things i noticed during the show. during disposition/reflection, while maynard was not singing, just standing there with his headless guitar, he let off a big, obvious yawn! i dont know about anyone else but i thought it was pretty funny, and out of place for a gig. the other thing i notice which caught my eye was, at the end of the show, after maynard gave the peace sign, he then gave the vulcan 'live long and prosper' gesture. again, a funny thing i thought. other than these everything else has been said from my point of view. represent, marchy

Review written by: Luc ( Review posted on: 05/04/02 11:31:18 ET

This was this reviewer's 1st Tool show

Its been more than a week since this show, and everyday I wish I could go and see them again. Before they even walked on stage I had goose bumps in anticipation of finally getting to see TOOL. I'd waited for so long! They opened with The Grudge, which I expected they would, and I thought they were a little loose at first. It didn't take 'em long to warm up though. Maynard's scream fell short, but at least we got one. In fact it was tough to hear since the most of the crowd at floor level screamed too, and they pretty much overpowered him! I was surprised that they played H. It was awesome though, especially towards the end where it builds up with the "I don't mind" bit, which the crowd really got into. Sober was the only song they played off Undertow, and it sounded 10 times better played live. Parabol and Parabola were not initially 2 of my favourite tracks off Lateralus, but I really enjoyed seeing them live. I have a much higher appreciation of those two tracks now. Disposition + Reflection was probably my favourite bit of the show. I really liked the video for Reflection and personally I loved the way Adam played an extened outro. Triad was so powerful with Dale and Danny belting the shit out of there respective drum kits. As a side note, I didn't even notice until during Triad that Mark and Hanna from O.L. were naked. But I was in the cheap seats and I have poor eye site so I think I can be excused. However, you can imagine my surprise when Mark slowly span around on his rope and there's his dick hangin down for all to see. I think its a show that definitely would be enjoyed more the second time around. Here's why...I read a review of a subsequent show and this person commented on the fact that Maynard wore sunglasses for the duration of the show. So I asked my girlfriend if he wore sunglasses for the duration of the Wollongong show. Apparently he did! I didn't even notice. There was just so much to take in. I don't know about you other people, but given the time and money, I would have loved to have followed them on their tour around Australia and seen every show. It would be the holiday/experience of a lifetime! Next time I'll definitely have to get floor tickets. The atmosphere was obviously so much better down there. The crowd in the seats was kind of stagnant - they didn't really get into it that much. Plus the show wasn't even sold out. How the fuck can a TOOL show not sell out!!! They can play 2 sold out shows at Maddison Square Garden, but a puny little stadium like the Wollongong Enterteinment Centre can't be sold out. What the fuck is wrong with you other people in Wollongong? I should have expected it though. The people of Wollongong are pooor supporters of all Sporting and Musical events, so should this have been any different? I'll tell you why. Because TOOL are probably the biggest international band to have played in Wollongong. Because Lateralus when to number #1 during its first week of sales in Australia. Because it will probably be years before they come back to Australia, let alone Wollongong. Ungrateful bloody people. For crying out loud I feel blessed to have seen them. Anyway, they closed with Lateralus (obviously). Once they all grouped around Danny's kit I knew it was coming. I was sad/annoyed/dissapointed that it was their last song. I wasn't disappointed with the show - it was definitely an experience I'll never forget - it was just sad to think that soon it would all be over. I didn't want it to end. But it did, and the guys hugged chucked stuff into the crowd ,waved goodbye, and left the stage. With that, the house lights came on and a guy came out and I guess began what must be the arduous process of dismantling Danny's drumkit, (they were playing in Melbourne the following night). Even then I still hoped they would comeback to play just one more song, make the hairs on the back of my neck stand up just one more time. But it wasn't to be. Even after leaving the Entertainment Centre and walking down the street to the car I kept my ears open in case they did come back for an encore, despite the fact that ... deep down ... I knew they wouldn't ...