Tool is an American progressive metal band from Los Angeles, California. Formed in 1990, the group's line-up has included drummer Danny Carey, guitarist Adam Jones, and vocalist Maynard James Keenan. Since 1995, Justin Chancellor has been the band's bassist, replacing their original bassist Paul D'Amour. Tool has won three Grammy Awards, performed worldwide tours, and produced albums topping the charts in several countries.
- Sweating, and breathing
And staring, and thinking
And it's almost like I'm swimming
- I'm trying to remember when, but it makes me dizzy
- Seems like I've been here before
Seems so familiar
Seems like I'm slipping
Into a dream within a dream
- And I'm sweating, and breathing
And it's almost like I'm swimming
- It's the way you whisper
Drag me under
Takes me home
"Part of Me"
"Cold and Ugly" (live)
- Trembling at the thought of feeling
- Wide awake and keeping distance from my soul
- I am scared like you
- Choices always were a problem for you
- What you need is someone strong to guide you…like me
- If you want to get your soul to heaven, trust in me
- Just do everything I tell you to do
- Deaf and blind and dumb and born to follow
What you need is someone strong to guide you
- My gods will
When he speaks
He speaks through me
He has needs
Like I do
We both want
To rape you
- I don't want to be hostile
I don't want to be dismal
But I don't want to rot in an
Apathetic existence, either
- You know it hurt me
But I'm breathing so I guess I'm still alive
Even if signs seem to tell me otherwise
- Do unto others what has been done to you
- This is a variant on the Golden Rule
- There's a shadow just behind me
Shrouding every step I take
Making every promise empty
Pointing every finger at me
- Jesus, won't you fucking whistle
Something but the past and done?
- I am just a worthless liar
I am just an imbecile
I will only complicate you
Trust in me and fall as well
I will find a centre in you
I will chew it up and leave
I will work to elevate you
Just enough to bring you down
- Why can't we not be sober?
I just want to start this over
Why can't we sleep forever?
I just want to start this over
- I want what I want
"Bottom" (feat. Henry Rollins)
- My compassion is broken now
- So smell my soul is burning
- If I let you, you would make me destroy myself. In order to survive you, I must first survive myself. And I can sink no further. And I cannot forgive you. There's no choice but to confront you, to engage you, to erase you. I've gone to great lengths to expand my threshold of pain. I will use my mistakes against you; there's no other choice. Shameless, now. Nameless, now. I'm nothing, now. I'm no one, now. But my soul must be iron 'cause my fear is naked. I'm naked and fearless. And my fear is naked!
- These lines constitute Henry Rollins's spoken-word portion of the song; Maynard resumes singing while Rollins is speaking the last three words.
- Dead inside!
- Twice as clear as heaven
Twice as loud as reason
- How could I let this bring me back to my knees?
- I'm helpless and I'm awake
- All I knew
All I believed
No longer comfort me
- Thought I was high
Thought I was free
Thought I was there
- And the angel said unto me, "These are the cries of the carrots!"
- Let the rabbits wear glasses!
- This is necessary
This is necessary
Life feeds on life feeds on life feeds on life feeds on…
- "If God is our father," you thought, "then Satan must be our cousin." Why didn't anybody else understand these important things?
- Constant over stimulation numbs me
But I would not want you any other way
- I said, "I don't want it. I just need it.
"To breathe, to feel, to know I'm alive."
- I'll keep digging
Until I feel something.
- I've been wallowing in my own confused and insecure delusions
- I've been wallowing in my own chaotic, insecure delusions
- I wanna feel the change consume me
- Hoping I can clear the way
By stepping through my shadow
Coming out the other side
Step into the shadow
- What was it like to see
The face of your own stability
Suddenly look away,
Leaving you with the dead and hopeless?
- Dreams are fading
Carry my ancient soul
Carry me into the light
"Die Eier von Satan"
- Bei zweihundert grad für fünfzehn minuten backen und keine eier
- Saw the gap again today
- Take care not to make me enter
If I do, we both may disappear
- What is this but my reflection?
Who am I to judge or strike you down?
- Yeah, I'm slipping back into the gap again
I'm alive when you are touching me
Alive when you are shoving me down
But I'd trade it all
For just a little
Peace of mind
- If when I say I might fade like a sigh if I stay
You minimise my movement, anyway
I must persuade you another way
- There's no love in fear
- I'm staring down the hole again
- See, I think drugs have done some good things for us—I really do. And if you don't believe drugs have done good things for us, do me a favour: go home tonight, take all your albums, all your tapes, and all your CDs and burn 'em. 'Cause, you know what? The musicians who made all that great music that's enhanced your lives throughout the years—real fuckin' high on drugs.
- Today, a young man on acid realised that all matter is merely energy condensed to a slow vibration—that we are all one consciousness experiencing itself subjectively. There's no such thing as death, life is only a dream, and we are the imagination of ourselves. Here's Tom with the weather.
- It's not a war on drugs, it's a war on personal freedom is what it is, okay? Keep that in mind at all times, thank you.
- Bill Hicks audio clip
- A child's rhyme stuck in my head
It said that life is but a dream
I've spent so many years in question
To find I've known this all along
- Black as holes within a memory
- I stick my hand into the shadow
- But the eyes seem so familiar
- Prying open my third eye
"Third Eye" (live)
- Think for yourself. Question authority.
- Throughout human history, as our species has faced the frightening, terrorising fact that we do not know who we are, or where we are going in this ocean of chaos, it has been the authorities—the political, the religious, the educational authorities—who've attempted to comfort us by giving us order, rules, regulations, informing, forming in our minds their view of reality. To think for yourself, you must question authority and learn how to put yourself in a state of vulnerable, open-mindedness; chaotic, confused, vulnerability to inform yourself.
"Part of Me" (live)
- I know you well, you are a part of me
I know you better than I know myself
- So, we need you to find a comfortable space that's not only comfortable, but vulnerable. I want you to shut your eyes and go there, and we'll meet you on the other side.
- Maynard's spoken-word introduction
- What are you but my reflection?
Who am I to judge or strike you down?
- But you're pushing
And I'm shoving you
And you're pushing me
And I'm shoving you
- And I'm slipping back into the gap again
I feel alive when you touch me
I feel alive when you hold me…down
Slipping back into
Slipping back into you
- It's some kind of psychedelic experience
- Our body is light, we are immortal
Our body is light, we are immortal
Our body is love, we are eternal
Our body is love, we are eternal
- Omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent, without judgment
"No Quarter" (Led Zeppelin cover)
- Locked in a place where no one goes
- The original Led Zeppelin line was "They choose the path where no one goes"
- If you are calling from a secret spy phone, please press 5.
- Wear the grudge like a crown of negativity
Calculate what we will or will not tolerate
Desperate to control all and everything
Unable to forgive your scarlet lettermen
- Clutch it like a cornerstone
Otherwise it all comes down
- Hang on or be humbled again
- Defining, confining, sinking deeper
Controlling, defining, and we're sinking deeper
- Choose to let this go
- But I'm still right here
Giving blood, keeping faith
And I'm still right here
- And if there were no rewards to heal
No loving embrace to see me through
This tedious path I've chosen here
I certainly would've walked away by now
And I still may
- I know the pieces fit 'cause I watched them fall away
- Disintegrating as it goes, testing our communication
The light that fueled our fire then has burned a hole between us so
We cannot seem to reach an end, crippling our communication
I know the pieces fit 'cause I watched them tumble down
No fault, none to blame—it doesn't mean I don't desire
To point the finger, blame the other, watch the temple topple over
To bring the pieces back together, rediscover communication
There was a time that the pieces fit, but I watched them fall away
- Cold silence has a tendency to atrophy any sense of compassion
- So familiar and overwhelmingly warm
This one, this form I hold now
Embracing you, this reality here
- We barely remember what came before this precious moment
Choosing to be here right now
- This body makes me feel eternal
All this pain is an illusion
- We barely remember
Who or what came before
This precious moment
We are choosing to be here
- Stay inside of this holy reality
This holy experience
Choosing to be here in this body
- Celebrate this chance to be
Alive and breathing
- This body holding me reminds me of my own mortality
Embrace this moment, remember:
We are eternal, all this pain is an illusion
"Ticks & Leeches"
- My blood is bruised and borrowed
You thieving bastards, you have
Turned my blood cold and bitter
Beat my compassion black and blue
- See also Fibonacci numbers.
All I see
In my infancy
Red and yellow then came to be
Reaching out to me
Lets me see
- I embrace my
I embrace my
I embrace my
Feel the rhythm, to
Enough to step aside and
Weep like a widow, to
Feel inspired, to
Fathom the power, to
Witness the beauty, to
Bathe in the fountain, to
Swing on the spiral, to
Swing on the spiral, to
To swing on the spiral of
Our divinity and
Still be a human
With my feet upon the ground I
Lose myself between the sounds and
Open wide to suck it in, I
Feel it move across my skin, I'm
Reaching up and reaching out, I'm
Reaching for the random or what-
Ever will bewilder me, what-
Ever will bewilder me, and
Following our will and wind we
May just go where no one's been, we'll
Ride the spiral to the end and
May just go where no one's been
Spiral out, keep going…
- I have come curiously close to the end—down
Beneath my self-indulgent pitiful hole
- I may find peace within the emptiness
- And in my darkest moment, fetal and weeping
The moon tells me a secret—my confidant
- I must crucify the ego before it's far too late
- And we will come to find that we are all one mind
"Faaip de Oiad"
- According to Danny Carey, the voice in this song is a person who called the Art Bell syndicated radio programme on 11 September 1997. However, a YouTube video containing the original transmission can be found with an upload date predating the date provided by Carey. A caller admitted some point later that he was the caller and that his original call was fraudulent.
- I'm a former employee of Area 51. I-I was let go on a medical discharge about a week ago and, and...
- What we're thinking of as—as aliens, uh—they're—th-they're extradimensional beings that an earlier precursor of the, um, the space programme made contact with. Uh, they-they are not what they claim to be.
- The government knows about them. And, th-there's a lot of safe areas in this world that they could begin moving the population to now. They are not! They want those major population centres wiped out so that the—the few that are left will be more easily controllable.
10,000 Days (2006)
- Eye on the t.v.
'Cause tragedy thrills me
- It's no fun 'til someone dies
- I need to watch things die
From a good, safe distance
Vicariously, I live while the whole world dies
- Blood, like rain, come down
Drum on grave and ground
- The universe is hostile
Devour to survive, so it is
So it's always been
We all feed
It's like blood to a vampire
Live while the whole world dies
Much better you than I
- But I, I would wish it all away
If I thought I'd lose you just one day
- The devil and his had me down
In love with the dark side I'd found
- Prayed like a martyr dusk to dawn
Begged like a hooker all night long
Tempted the devil with my song
And got what I wanted all along
- Shine on forever
- Divided, I'm withering away
- Breathe in union
"Wings for Marie, Pt. 1"
"10,000 Days (Wings, Pt. 2)"
- Listen to the tales as we all rationalise
Our way into the arms of the savior
- Who could deny
You were the one who illuminated your little piece of the divine?
- Ten thousand days in the fire is long enough
- "Give me my wings!"
- Set as I am in my ways and my arrogance
Burden of proof tossed upon the believers
You were my witness, my eyes, my evidence
Judith Marie, unconditional one
- Judith Marie Keenan (22 November 1943 – 18 June 2003) was Maynard James Keenan's mother
- You must have been high
- You must have been so high
- Weeping shades of indigo
- Liar, lawyer, mirror; for you, what's the difference?
Kangaroo be stoned; he's guilty as the government
- Ten to two a.m., X, Yogi DMT, and a box of Krispy Kremes
- E.T. revealed to me his singular purpose. He said, "You are the Chosen One, the One who will deliver the message. A message of hope for those who choose to hear it and a warning for those who do not."
- This is so real
- It was so real
Like I woke up in Wonderland
All sort of terrifying
- You believe me, don't you?
Please believe what I just said
See the Dead ain't touring
And this wasn't all in my head
- I can't remember what they said to me
- Work hard
Stay in school
Listen to your mother
Your father is right, son
Jesus loves you
- These lyrics are played backwards
- Pure as we begin
"Right in Two"
- Angels on the sideline
Puzzled and amused
Why did Father give these humans free will?
Now they're all confused
- Father blessed them all with reason
And this is what they choose
- Monkey killing monkey killing monkey over pieces of the ground
Silly monkeys, give them thumbs, they make a club and beat their brother down
How they survive so misguided is a mystery
Fear Inoculum (2019)
- The Deceiver says, he says:
"You belong to me. You don't wanna breathe the light of the others.
Fear the light. Fear the breath. Fear the others for eternity."
But I hear them now. Inhale the clarity. I hear the venom, the venom in what you say.
Bless this immunity.
Reach out and beyond.
Wake up, remember.
We are born of One Breath, One Word.
We are all One Spark, eyes full of wonder.
- Tears in my eyes chasing Ponce de León's phantoms.
So filled with hope I can taste mythical fountains.
False hope, perhaps, but the truth never got in my way before now.
Feel the sting. Feeling time bearing down.
- Free fall through our midnight, this epilogue of our own fable.
Heedless in our slumber.
Floating nescient we free fall through this boundlessness, this madness of our own making.
Falling isn't flying. Floating isn't infinite...
- Judge, Condemn, and banish any and everyone.
Only the whispers from within.
Misleading me over and over and over.
- [Keepin it calm. Keep calm. Keepin it calm. Keep calm. Keep calm. FUCK. Here we go again]
- Control, your delusion. Insane and striking at random.
Victim of your certainty, and therefore your doubt's not an option.
Blameless, The 7empest will be just that.
So try as you may, feeble, your attempt to atone. Your words to erase all the damage cannot.
- A 7empest must be just that.
"Revolution" (demo collaboration by Tool and Rage Against the Machine)
- Give him your love, give him your love to save him
- You can kill the revolutionary
But you can't kill the revolution
- Opening strong with their first hit, 1993's "Sober," the crowd - predominantly made up of younger fans, rabid with anticipation - was rushed into a hot frenzy. Lead singer Maynard James Keenan, as is customary for the enigmatic frontman, loomed in the background with his back facing the audience for most of the show. And as the first few songs let their last few notes fade away, Keenan disrobed, removing various parts of his ensemble, leaving him with nothing more then black underwear and a stripe of black paint on his face.
- Tool has the goods and puts on a blinding display of heavy metal energy mixed with cerebral art focus.
- Keenan…wore an all-black leather outfit, had his face painted black and stood on a spinning platform some distance from the front stage; he never seemed to look at the crowd.
- Gavin Engler, "TOOL Concert 101," Law Society Gazette (1993).
- We always try to think of something that's never been done before, you know, as far as album packaging, and I've been a fan of stereoscopic photography my whole life and belong to the Southern California Stereoscopic Club.
- And we thought if we could get this to work with our budget, you know, and put this out, it'd be really unique and reflecting, you know, a lot of the artwork that I appreciate from the '70s.
- Adam Jones on his artwork for the 10,000 Days album packaging, quoted in "TOOL Guitarist Wins GRAMMY For 'Best Recording Package'," Blabbermouth.net (11 February 2007).
- In an interview with Rolling Stone last July, Jones reiterated how the lawsuit was affecting the band. "It's costing millions and millions and millions of dollars to defend us. And the fans are all going, 'We want a new Tool album. What the fuck?'" Jones said. "But the point is, we're fighting the good fight. We're going to trial and we want to crush them. But every time we've gotten close to going to trial, it gets postponed and we've wasted money and time and it has just drained our creative energy. We bought an insurance policy for peace of mind, but instead we would have been better off if we never had it and just dealt with the original lawsuit."
- Daniel Kreps, "Tool Speed Up Progress on New Album After Settling Lawsuit," Rolling Stone (Sunday, 15 March 2015).
- Tool is a fascinating anomaly.
- The video presentation…offered a stunning visual complement to the band's furious sonic assault.
- In the popular musical climate of today, which seems to favor the blandness of processed rap metal or the redundancy of uninspired readymade pop outfits, it is refreshing that a band such as Tool exists to add some much-needed freshness to the contemporary musical landscape.
- Wrath and pain, desire and self-loathing, ferocity and meditation all find a complicated balance in Tool.
- Avoiding self-glorification, the band played in near-darkness under video screens on Monday. Maynard James Keenan, Tool's lead singer, stood on a platform behind Adam Jones on guitar and Justin Chancellor on bass, with his face in shadows, while Danny Carey on drums toiled meticulously by his side.
- Its songs hammer and seethe, melding the lowdown guitars of grunge, the odd meters of progressive rock and the whiplash stops and starts of thrash. Mr. Keenan's sustained, almost androgynous voice hovers within the music, desolate but impervious to the tumult around him.
- Tool's songs encompassed sullen calm, rapid-fire onslaughts, spacious chords and nimble-fingered counterpoint. Standing room sometimes became a mosh pit. But midway through its two-hour set, Tool chose stasis with a patiently tolling guitar vamp like a mantra. Its fastest music also had a ritual quality, pounding and repeating like drummers in a trance ceremony. Songs that rev up and end abruptly on Tool's albums only accelerated further, riffing harder and harder as if, through furious motion, they could somehow break through Tool's perpetual tension to reach a long-denied release.
- Jon Pareles, "POP REVIEW; Flailing Wildly to Escape the Darkness," The New York Times (6 October 2001).
- The music of Tool is the dark slime of a warm, black night. Tool is an escape, a subtle revolution of sound and perception. The musical landscape this band crafts…is the fulfilment of life, surreally black and purely haunting.
- "This song goes out to," vocalist and songwriter Maynard James Keenan began slowly. And then he paused. And he paused still. And he finally finished, "Joey and Dee Dee." The band jumped into an extremely heavy cover of the Ramones' "Commando," baffling some fans and driving others into an approving fit of screams.
- What can I say about 10,000 Days, really? It sounds exactly and precisely like a Tool album. They might as well have not have released it at all, because anyone who's ever heard Tool could simply imagine what a new Tool album would sound like, and this is exactly what they'd imagine.
- First up, "Vicarious": a Dateline Special Report on violence in the news media featuring guest commentator Maynard James Keenan. Excellent! I've been hoping to hear Maynard weigh in on the hottest issue of 1990.
- Particularly impressed was I with "Lipan Conjuring," which was so thoughtful an addition to the album that I feel as if it were included just for me. You see, I went to the record store with only fifteen dollars in my pocket, and I had a devil of a time deciding between 10,000 Days and Native Moods: A Pathway to Peace. On one hand, I love rockin' out to some ten-minute chugging shuffles, but there's another part of my soul that craves the inner harmony that can only be brought on from some high-quality chanting. It was with a heavy heart that I left the store carrying only one of these two things— or so I thought! Imagine my immense pleasure when my hard rock album was interrupted— no, that's too harsh a word— when my hard rock album was magnificently bolstered by exactly the sort of stupid fucking crap I might hear on some grocery store counter impulse buy CD of New Age chanting bullshit! Bravo! I can have my cake and eat it too, and while I eat my cake I can listen to some total crap!
- Tool are one of the few bands who have made themselves famous by disregarding all expectations of them.
- A strangely chatty Maynard James Keenan broke his self-imposed exile and spoke casually to the crowd, inciting them to a cheer of "Yes!" and sometimes sharing his thoughts, most of which were unashamedly eccentric to say the least.
- With their feet firmly planted on their spot on the stage and their faces obscured by their long hair, the players simply let their instruments communicate, and made no attempt to try it any other way. Adam Jones in particular was a foreboding figure – his sheer stillness contrasted drastically by the strained and pained sounds he forced from his guitar.
- [T]he band were as impeccably precise on their instruments as they are on record, with every dynamic, subtlety and thread of power displayed flawlessly.
- As esoteric and arcane as their music tends to be, there's no doubt that this unique group of musicians weave their magic to everlasting effect.
- The album art was a unique design created by artist Alex Grey. The art is different layers of patterns with the different layers of the human body. In Alex Grey's book "Transfigurations" he says the "saw blade" made of eyes "represents the primordial spirit of emptiness and awareness. The next layer was a vajra emitting energy, the subtle essence of soul around which the physical body coagulates. The next several layers detail the physical systems of viscera, skeletal, muscular, nervous, and cardiovascular systems."