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10,000 Days

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(1046 Reviews)

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Sonically relentless and visually groundbreaking only begin to describe the Tool experience. Formed in Los Angeles, CA in 1990, Tool has cemented themselves in today’s hard music community with uncompromising attitude and vision. With just one EP and three album releases over a 15-year span, Tool has created a loyal and even rabid fan base, selling over 10 million albums and half a million videos in the U.S. alone. More from Tool Aenima Lateralus Undertow Opiate Parabola (DVD) Schism (DVD) With a majority of the songs on 10,000 Days clocking in well past the seven-minute mark, you wouldn’t be entirely mistaken in thinking that the title of the album refers to how long it actually takes to make it through the whole thing. Two of the tracks–the sitar and tabla enhanced ”10,000 Days (Wings Part 2)” and its suitably epic psych-rock sister ”Rosetta Stoned”–even linger on for nearly a dozen leisurely minutes each. That’s delightful news for the legion of Tool fans that have been waiting five years for the follow-up to 2001’s Lateralus, which debuted at number one and sold 2.3 million copies in the United States. Singer Maynard James Keenan is back on mystical form after his hiatus with the politically slanted A Perfect Circle, sounding at once ethereal and eloquent as he calmly charges through the metal tempest of the opening track ”Vicarious.” The rest of the band, meanwhile, hits a series of high-flying moments with tracks such as ”Jambi” and ”The Pot.” When Tool sounds as good as it does on these songs it’s hard to get enough. Which makes it all the more baffling that a surprisingly large chunk of the disc is given over to mood-enhancing soundscapes like ”Lost Keys” and ”Vigniti Tres.” Who has time for filler? –Aidin Vaziri

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  • Tool is far from a band in the traditional sense of the word. More than anything they are a union of true composer/musicians. In a time when the word “artist” is used far too loosely, these juggernauts transcend the concept and define it.

    “10,000 Days” does not contain songs. It is an aggregate of compositions whose content shatters the barriers of hard rock/heavy metal music. The song “10,000 Days (Wings Pt 2)” is a masterpiece itself. The aural landscape and musical skill displayed here is simply astounding.

    Yes I am a Tool fan and have been since the early days of “Opiate.” But my review is not derived from this prejudice. If this album were rubbish, I would sternly say so. I am pleased to state the contrary, that this album is a feat of epic proportions, and as such, is superb.

    Posted on January 27, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • Y’know, I can understand if some people don’t quite get what this album is all about, or if they feel like they can’t rock out to it like Aenima, or if they don’t like more reflective vocals, or if they don’t like long songs…or whatever gripes some folks might have.

    But 1 star? 2 stars? Are you f’in kidding me? Folks, if you want simple four-minute rock songs, mashed together in Pro Tools, with lyrical content that your average 13-year-old girl can easily understand, Nickelback is –> that way. Please go there now.

    This is f’in Tool. YEP, STILL TOOL. The songs are generally very heavy, both sonically and lyrically. In fact, tracks 1, 2, and 8 are some of the most skull-crushing stuff Tool has ever recorded. I guess the problem is that the lyrics are more thoughtful and reflective. Gee. Or maybe the problem is that the musicianship is more advanced. Gee. Or maybe the problem is that the guitar mix is more spacious and the vocals are pushed back a bit, creating a more balanced sound with much crisper bass response. Gee.

    Rosetta Stoned is a masterpiece. Must be amazing live. I would say Tool is the Led Zeppelin of our time, except that Tool seems healthier (lifestyle-wise) and more musically capable right now than Zep ever was at their peak. Thanks Tool for an amazing new album. Now I’ll step aside so the angsty “BOO HOO I WANTED ANOTHER AENIMA BOO HOO HOO” gripe-n-moan fest may resume.

    Posted on January 27, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • I always admired Tool for their vision and style, but until now, I never really appreciated them. Their technical perfection and creative style has never been as apparent to me as now. Some of the criticisms seem to be centered on the idea that the songs are long (wtf?) or aren’t catchy jingles — what is wrong with these critics? The title track is one of the most stellar works of music I’ve ever heard — an affirmation of self-realization and a heartbreaking homage to his mother in her 27 year (10,000 day) paralysis and her eventual death. It captures imagery from mythology, religion, psychology and modern poetry to evoke the image of someone claiming their place in the universe.

    I have to wonder if some of these folks are even listening to the right album. Your preference is your preference, but the repeated cries of “not like the old Tool” are pathetisad, and “too long” and “who has the time” as mental laziness. This album has blown away everything else released this year, and not just because it’s Tool, but because it’s beautiful.
    I don’t like everything they produce, and was pretty much disinterested in Lateralus…so you sheep who are blindly crying sheep based off what someone else likes should drown yourselves.

    Posted on January 26, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • I have read close to 100 reviews of this album and it pains me to realize how few people get it. I keep reading phrases like “It sounds like” or “compare song “a” to song “b” and you’ll see a similarity”. What I have seen very little of are people who have listened, I mean really listened, to this album as music and not just as “the New Tool Album”.

    If I had paid $15 and the album only had Wings for Marie and 10,000 Days on it, I would have been happy. Not since I heard Mozart’s Requiem have I wept at a musical composition. I leap ahead… Let’s do this as people expect – shall we?

    Vicarious – This is a good opener for a Tool album… Lots of force and easily deciphered lyrics that the angry youth types can sink into… Quite simply – it is a song about the TV generation and the way we have lost visceral experience… in a way, it delves into the loss of even our basic ability to start a journey up the Tree of Life because we couldn’t even start to experience Malkuth.

    Jambi – This is a song of adoration.. for whome, we are not privy to.. that is for Maynard to know and us to wonder.. but does it really matter? At the end of the song he sings the words “silence Leech and save your poison…” Is this the object of adoration responding to worship? Is it the worshiper losing faith? Make your own choice.. the music crunches here.. ignore the words.. just complain about the sound.. or compliment it… heh.

    Wings for Marie/10,000 Days – The first time I heard this I had to hear it again.. clearly.. it felt sacred… perfect in music/word/pitch/emotion. Then I listened again.. and again.. louder and louder.. over spreakers… with headphones. I realized that I was crying at some point, but didn’t care. This is a Requiem for Judith Marie, Maynard’s mother… There is bitterness here.. love… thankfullness. Maynard and company have managed to take us through most of the grieving process in 13 minutes. I was exhausted and needed sleep. When I awoke… I listened again and found myself singing for his mother along with him. How many Men could write this for their mother? Ask Tool…

    The Pot – I love this song… yes – it reminds me of the feel of Hooker with a Penis, but I do not compare the two.. It has that attitude.. Love it or leave it.

    I am going to lump Lost Keys(Blame Hoffman), Lipan Conjuring, and Viginti Tres into one portion here.. not because they don’t merit review, but because they do. They are easy to discount as “filler”, but I don’t buy it. Each of these short ambient pieces hold some sort of significance to the band… that is why they are here. If they were created by a band like Dead Voices on Air or Coil, they would by lauded as amazing accomplishments of experimental music, but because this is Tool.. we just can’t accept that. As far as the comments I have read elsewhere about the “filler” material… if I wanted to use that ideology on this album… everything before and after Wings for Marie/10,000 Days is filler for those two songs. That being said, I would not be suprised to hear Maynard say in an interview – “Yeah, those were just fluff..”

    Rosetta Stoned – This piece is a masterstroke… it took several listenings before it really struck home. At first it seems almost like stream of consciousness gibberish… but wait.. listen… There is a story here of other intelligences affecting our protagonist.. Who is it? Who cares! if you can keep up with the chaos that begets order in this song, you won’t care because it is like a good acid trip… Sit back with the headphones and clear mind and just enjoy.

    Intension – Will as force. Will is force. Will moves us. The music was made for these lyrics.. the lyrics for this music. It can hynotize you if you let it.

    Right in Two – I can’t explain why I love this one… but I really think it has something to do with Aldous Huxley and Kurt Vonnegut. Huxley wrote a book called Ape and Essence that has portions that I flash back to in hearing this song. Vonnegut wrote a book called Galapagos where the more “evolved” human race of the distant future is a form of aquatic sea life that mocks the “silly big brained humans with poseable thumbs”. My God!! Is that where Maynard got the idea!?! Who cares!!!! Just listen and realize that though this song kicks you in the gut, it might just be a little light hearted..

    In closing – If this was the last album Tool ever made, we could ask for no more.. everything after this is a gift.

    Posted on January 26, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • Tool fans. Give this album a chance please. You need to listen to it a few times through before trashing it. The lyrics are AMAZING as always. If you don’t actually listen or know what this album is all about you are missing the point. For instance Marie & 10,000 days WHY?

    Judith Marie was Maynard James Keenan’s mother’s name. She was a very religious person. One day she had a stroke that left her in a wheelchair partially paralyzed. This stroke only strengthened her belief in God – something that Maynard found to be pretty ironic. She was paralyzed for 27 years before dying in June 03, which is approximately 10,000 days. She was very religious, (Maynard wrote the APC song “Judith” at least partially about her – The lyrics in JUDITH reflect how he felt about the whole situation – “It’s not like you killed someone, It’s not like you drove a spiteful spear into his side, You praise the one who left you broken down and paralyzed.” He’s saying that his mother was a good person who believed in God and yet this is how she was “thanked.”), 10,000 days is about her finding her savior now that she has passed away. The song is saying that she should be in heaven, and god should not hold any thing that Maynard did against her. She kept her faith even when Maynard went down a different path. even after spending 27 years paralyzed and basically a miserable life all for her christ and lord. He’s saying that she’d better get her wings, she’s damn near the posterchild for keeping faith.

    If you don’t believe me listen to the lyrics.

    10000 days in the fire is long enough.
    You’re going home…

    You’re the only one who can hold your head up high,
    Shake your fist at the gates saying,
    “I have come home now!”

    Fetch me the spirit, the son and the father,
    Tell them their pillar of faith has ascended.

    “It’s time now!
    My time now!
    Give me my
    Give me my wings!”…

    Powerful and amazing stuff if you ask me!!! This is just one example of the many concepts within the Album. I think True Tool fans realize that the lyrics are often just as powerful as the music so when you hear something that some reviews are calling useless filler (which I can’t understand because they are great songs) give it a chance and find the true meaning behind it. It gives it context which helps you realize why the song might not blow your head off like Aenima or The Grudge (which of course we love!!)

    Posted on January 26, 2010 - Permalink - Buy Now