Tool Fear Inculumn

5,000 Days After 10,000 Days Tool Releases Fear Inculumn

It’s here; it’s FINALLY here. I’m referring to Tool’s anticipated fifth album, Fear Inoculum.

 It’s been 13 years (almost 5,000 days, but who’s counting?) since their last album, 10,000 Days. This album has been rumored, started, abandoned, restarted, “leaked,” neglected, re-abandoned; but nevertheless, it’s HERE.

In those 13 years, lead singer Maynard Keenan made nine albums with his other band Pusicfer and three with A Perfect Circle, which is just peachy.

Tool formed in 1990 in Southern California as a hobby of drummer Danny Carey, guitarist Adam Jones, bassist Paul D’Amour replaced by Justin Chancellor in 1995, and vocalist and lyricist Maynard Keenan.

Tool was also one of the last holdouts of digital streaming services until Aug. 2019, but upon subsiding, all four of Tool’s previous albums landed in the Top 20 of Billboard’s Top 200 chart; the only band to ever do that.

The title track on Fear Inoculum was the only single released and is over 10 minutes long.

It begins with a whirring sound, then builds to a cello melody, then Carey on drums and Chancellor on bass interweave their instruments. Maynard lulls you with his immersive voice. It’s a great introduction to this album.

The standout on most of this album is Carey. There are plenty of moments where he lets loose dizzying drum solos. “Pneuma,” “Invincible,” and “7emptest” are some of the best drumming of his career.

However, “Chocolate Chip Trip” is the most delicious track; with wind-chimes, a gong, and a drum solo that sounds like Carey is an octopus.

The guitar from Jones is another great aspect of this album. “Descending” is a 13-minute epic with riffs and licks galore.

“7empest” is a maelstrom with vicious movements, great tone, and his best exhibition of artistry.

This album has almost everything a quintessential Tool album needs: measured emotion, subtle Easter-eggs discovered on subsequent listens, progressive build-up, compelling performances, and the duality of primitivism and civility.

The band’s brand of alternative metal has not rusted, but one thing is missing: Maynard’s voice doesn’t leave his register.

He is capable of wailing out powerful screams littered throughout his discography, but lamely “chose” not to.

The lyrics are as mystical and poetic as ever, and also as clandestine.

As great as this record is, it does drag at times. “Invincible” has a section that repeats for three minutes, which is 5,000 days in Tool-time.

The shortest songs are interludes, and there’s three of them. I shouldn’t be surprised because their 1996 album Ænima features a track that is just fluctuating static.

Some of the other tracks, like “Culling Voices,” are just plain forgettable.

If you’d like to experience enlightenment listen all the way through. It’s an hour and a half journey of only 10 songs, but you won’t regret it.

Many have experienced the album, for Fear Inculumn just debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, topping Taylor Swift’s new album Lover.

IMAGES TAKEN from Billboard