In 2019, the band Tool returned for the first time in 13 years, and we still don't know what that means.
Popdust didn't think the band's reunion was a big deal, considering how the band handled the extremely pretentious promotional process for Fear Inoculum. But it seemingly worked. Tool fans from all corners of the earth rushed to binge the 80-minute spectacle, and as the reviews started to pour in, the majority of them were positive.
We were left with a lot of questions. Tool is undoubtedly the greatest metal band of all time and have repeatedly challenged and changed the way human beings enjoy music.
With that said, this listicle comes from a genuine place. We want to enjoy Tool. We really do. But as one can imagine, the task feels insurmountable for us normies. Below are a few questions we would really like answered before diving into the Tool sensation.
Why Are Tool's Songs So Long?
TOOL - 7empest (Audio) youtu.be
Why is "7empest" 15 minutes long? 10 of those minutes are just electric guitar. Their riffs have the same strange tempo, the same BPM, for 10 minutes. Is that the appeal? What is being said in those extra 10 minutes that can't be said in 3 or 4? If "7empest" was a short story, any good editor would insist on cuts.
Why are people labeling the track as a masterpiece? What is this "journey" that the track supposedly takes everyone on? Am I supposed to be sober when I listen to this? Do Tool fans still love this stuff when you take away their ketamine? Why does no one seem to mind that "Invincible" sounds just like "7empest"? What is the difference between the two besides the latter having five extra minutes of noise?
Why Can't I Tell Their Songs Apart?
Chocolate Chip Trip youtu.be
Is it cool that their songs aren't the slightest bit catchy? Is it cool for everything to sound like one long introduction and have no hooks? Am I supposed to not have any sense of where I am or what I'm listening to as each track progresses? How do I differentiate the tracks from each other? Where am I?
Why Are Tool Fans So Strange?
Why are Tool fans mostly comprised of heterosexual white people, and why do they all fetishize a group of 50-year-old rockers? Why have Tool fans loved being toyed with for the last 13 years? Why did they tolerate the abuse and hatred of Maynerd James Keenan? Are Tool fans in an abusive relationship? Are they okay?
Two tracks in to #FearInoculum and my face melted but my ears are still intact so we press on.— Richard Jeter (@Richard Jeter) 1567138424.0
Me after my first listen to the new @Tool album #fearinnoculum #tool https://t.co/ecvgY3HQTr— Paul Hibbard 🤘 (@Paul Hibbard 🤘) 1567139026.0
Leave me alone, I’m listening to the new @Tool album #FearInoculum 🖤 https://t.co/v3hFC7AUQq— Ellie🔛QUARANTINE (@Ellie🔛QUARANTINE) 1567140342.0
Can One "Casually" Listen to Tool?
TOOL - Lateralus (Audio) youtu.be
Or is that weird? Do Tool fans wake up, hop in their car, and think to themselves, "You know what would be a great way to start my day? A 10-minute metal song that lyrically and sequentially aligns with the numerical code of Fibonacci's work."
Why Does Fear Inoculum Sound the Same If You Play It Backwards and Forwards?
Is the band commentating on our gluttonous behavior as consumers? Is it meant to show how a capitalist society creates an inability to differentiate between whether the goods and information we receive are genuine or recycled? Is it meant to soundtrack the collective loop of human suffering? Or is it pure creative liberty in its truest form, demonstrating that everything comes back full circle and that we all live and die and that nothing is actually new?
What Does "Fear Inoculum" Mean?
TOOL - Fear Inoculum (Audio) youtu.be
Does the album title refer to a literal injection of fear, or does it refer to the concept of aging? That at some point all of us will succumb to our own form of "fear innoculum" because we all fear dying and leaving the realm of our own understanding and subconscious? Is the whole album a commentary on the human experience? Is the human experience an existential lie we tell ourselves to keep us from succumbing to our own primordial impulses?
Do We Even Exist at All?
TOOL - Pneuma (Audio) www.youtube.com
Or are we all trapped in our own perceptions of reality? How do we know our existence is even real? How do we know we're not just comatose beings, floating in an oculus rift of our own perceived realities? Do we have the ability to escape our fleshy bodies and experience true enlightenment and revelation, or are our bodies a cage we are trapped in and which prevent us from reaching nirvana?
Does true enlightenment come only in death? Does Fear Inoculum refer to the idea that we may never be truly enlightened or spiritually awoken until we die, and that our fear of dying is exactly what keeps us trapped in the cycle of human suffering? A
m I a Tool fan? Is my inability to understand the meaning of Tool mean I'm a Tool fan? Does Tool want me to understand them? Do I even understand myself? Does Tool's music unlock the secrets of the universe?