Posted on January 26, 2010 -
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.