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Tool - Undertow CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

3.18 | 514 ratings

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3 stars This is the last album that I purchased from TOOL and in fact this is the band's debut album. Luckily, I listened to other albums prior to having this one. My favorite albums from TOOL are "10000 Days" and "Lateralus". This debut album is not as strong as the follow-up albums but it still show 80% of the band's identity. Even, I would say that TOOL is the band that never changed much on the music style they produce. I can see clear similarity of this album with what came out later with "Aenima", "Lateralus" and "10,000 Days". The main characteristics of TOOL are: music with heavy grooves and beats, screaming vocal with heavy rhythms showcasting a tight combination of bass guitar and drum.

In terms of composition, it's good to know that the band has strong songwriting with musical approach that put emphasize on heavy groove, distorted guitar and heavy rhythm section through dynamic bass lines and dazzling drum work. Take example of track 3 "Sober" where the band tries to craft the ambient of spacey music overlaid with distorted guitar effects, screaming vocal and variation of tone ups and downs that stir your emotions. The guitar solo in the ending part of the track is quite interesting especially when it is followed with excellent music riffs demonstrating bass guitar work. Even when the next track "Bottom" where Henry Rollins takes vocal job, the ambient is being continued with further guitar solo that sounds a bit like U2 guitar style. I think in this track Rollins doing his job quite well even though I prefer Maynard James Keenan's voice. Again, through this track the bass lines are quite dominant.

Overall, this is a good album with good composition especially in songwriting. The key for this album is not on melody but it's much more to do with groove and textures. As the band has progressed, this album seems like the strong foundation for them to move forward because the music composed here is what the band use as reference for their follow-up albums. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Gatot | 3/5 |


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