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Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Good, but not for the queasy set

Full disclosure up front, I don't know much about Tool. I have Lateralus and this is the first video I've seen from the band. Vicarious is the DVD-single release of the all-CGI video housed in cool, elaborate packaging. Some online comments have been critical that the band should be releasing a quality live DVD rather than CGI single videos but others have found this release very good. I'm in between. The video is extremely well done and imaginative with weird apocalyptic nightmare landscapes and images of strange humanoid bodies being invaded by parasites that look like giant fleas. It's all taste I suppose but to me the imagery was pretty ugly and negative and nothing that touched me in any way except some mild repulsion. And perhaps that was the intent. Not something I would ever wish to watch repeatedly like I would a great concert. The song is some pretty thunderous, edgy metal with great riffs and spectacular drumming cutting through the wall of noise. Definitely kicking me enough to want to hear the album which is a good thing. Extras include a "making of" mini-documentary, storyboards, and commentary. There is also a look at the Chapel of Sacred Mirrors featuring the amazing artwork of Alex and Allyson Grey-truly spectacular viewing if you are into the Tool artwork. It is a spiritual chapel and museum of sorts and they speak of having gatherings of people in the hopes of "opening the third eye." Pretty exciting and visionary stuff. I think the focus on a single track rather than a comprehensive collection of videos or live material make the purchase recommendation "for fans" but am still going 3 stars for the talents on display both musically and in the dark video. There's enough here with the video and extras to please most Tool fans I would guess. 6/10

Report this review (#181165)
Posted Saturday, August 30, 2008 | Review Permalink
Conor Fynes
3 stars 'Vicarious' - Tool (Single)

I believe this was the first Tool song I ever listened to, and the first video I watched. The visual element of Tool has always been something that I've found very interesting and creative. This video is less trippy than some of the more obscure ones they have released in their time, but more of a commentary on war, and the way it is perceived. To that effect, it works with the song very well. Hearing a song about how people 'vicariously' experience things like war and devastation through their televisions without really understanding it works perfectly with the media footage of artillery shellings and tank advances.

Music alone, this was a great way to open up the album it belongs to, and a great song to get me into this band.

Report this review (#280008)
Posted Friday, April 30, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars Many descriptions and reviews on the internet are misleading about the content of this Vicarious DVD, and for that reason I didn't purchase it until recently. What a mistake to wait! This DVD is essential for any Tool fan and an excellent find for any prog fan who likes the surreal, psychedelic, and strange. Also, the material on the DVD is much more substantial than the Parabol(a) and Schism ones (which were basically just the music videos). The main feature of the DVD is the Vicarious short film, which is Tool's first completely CGI video. Adam Jones and Alex Grey are the two main artists behind the video, and it's a really cool experience to see their ideas merge. Anyway here are the full DVD contents:

1. Vicarious music video (9 minutes)

2. 2 overdubs of the music video with actor/comedian David Cross making hilarious commentary (18 minutes)

3. Vicarious documentary (40 minutes)

4. Footage of the storyboards from Alex Grey and Adam Jones (1 minute)

5. Footage of Alex's art gallery COSM and him talking about it (4 minutes)

Rating: 8/10

Report this review (#977467)
Posted Thursday, June 13, 2013 | Review Permalink

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