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Tool - Ænima CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

4.07 | 1045 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
2 stars Tool - Aenima 2.5 stars

With every album Tool puts out creates a new scar that carries on with their music for the rest of their career. From the debut album 'Undertow', the track 'Disgustipated' was a terrible track with 6 minutes of repetition followed by a nine minute mix of noise, silence and useless dribble. That carried over and seriously plagued Aenima.

It was pretty nice to see how in 3 years this band dropped the thrash metal and added a new brand of atmosphere and alternative metal to their music. 'Stinkfist', the opening track starts the album off beautifully. The heavy parts and the slow, hypnotic effect work well here and Maynard carries his voice through the track beautifully. 'Stinkfist' set the stage for many of their future big tracks.

'Eulogy' was a very boring track that didn't really lead anywhere. It had some really slow parts that were disrupted with heavy breaks. The problem was it just repeated so many times that the heaviness 'surprise' factor was just ruined. The guitar solo was also pretty pathetic, maybe one or two notes hit, covered up completely by effects.

'H' was a really nice track that does not get a lot of attention. It was a slow one that produced a nice hypnotic effect. A nice 'Discipline'-like guitar riff thrown in that always manages to stick out to the listener. Hearing a weird guitar pattern like that added well to the effect they were trying to achieve.

'Forty-Six and two' is a very popular track, but to me is a song with potential completely ruined and destroyed. The opening bass riff is nice, but what else needs to be heard? The guitar copies the riffs and plays it lower. During the verse Adam Jones might play it up a little higher and come back down during the chorus. Can someone explain how the exact same riff for six minutes is exciting? Meshuggah is able to get a riff down and create innumerable changes to it to get things more exciting. That's what separates high musicians like those from Tool. This repetition in the song was another scar to plague Tool forever.

Now, here is where things get utterly nasty.

The next seven tracks are some of the biggest pieces of trash I have heard in music, bottom of the trash. It's amazing how they came up with a two good songs, maybe three and then can go for nearly half an hour of producing nothing but garbage. This 'black area' is where you can turn the volume down on the computer and turn up the volume on the TV.

'Aenima' saves the album from going completely downhill. Jones throws down a pretty neat riff followed by some cool lyrics by Maynard attacking the L.A. area people and celebrities. No, the song isn't about finding yourself, Tool fan boys, just talking about Los Angeles. There is no 'deeper' purpose; you just got a nice trip after that hit.

Followed by another useless track that tops even the seven before 'Aenima'.

'Third Eye' is by far my favorite Tool track. I still can't believe they copied one of the riffs from 'Swamp Song' and stretched it into a 13 minute song. Even my favorite Tool track has to come with a huge flaw.. This produces the most hypnotic effect that they try to achieve. Followed by some insightful lyrics, which only Maynard can understand, because the sense you can make out of it is not even worth trying. This has a few heavy breaks that keep the song interesting.

It is easy to see why this band is popular. Most popular bands have a target audience that does not know what an album sounds like, that is beautifully from beginning to end, rather than albums, such as this, which has maybe 3 or 4 songs that are good. You never hear about anything else on this album besides 3 or 4, yet people will easily slap 5 stars onto this, looking away from those useless tracks that or indeed on here.

Wait for a greatest hits album that Tool will likely put out, when they run out of money.

ProgBagel | 2/5 |


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