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Tool - Lateralus CD (album) cover

LATERALUS

Tool

 

Experimental/Post Metal

4.22 | 1525 ratings

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prla
5 stars Arguably Tool's most brilliant effort, at least until this point in their career. It's also the one album that's harder to digest and it works both ways. You have to dig and explore and at the same time the songs voluntarily come to you. In my experience and with that of my friends, it inevitably comes a moment of clarity where Lateralus suddenly starts shining in all its glory.

"The Grudge" is a powerful yet intriguing opener, featuring towards the end what's vocalist Maynard James Keenan's longest scream ever on record towards the end. Amazingly, it clocks in over 20 seconds. "The Grudge" should be mandatory listening to every emo/core band that's popping out of nowhere these days. "Eon Blue Apocalypse" serves as a segue into "The Patient", a typical strange yet beautiful Tool track which washes into another segue, "Mantra".

Then comes the singles stuff, first "Schism" in which bassist Justin Chancellor shines. "Parabol" prepares the terrain for "Parabola", sharing the same melody line between both and the former segues into the latter with an explosion that's unlike Tool yet sounds distinctly like them if that's even possible (it's Tool, boys and girls, anything is possible, remember that). "Parabola" features some of the most kick-ass riffs Tool has ever produced and is definitely a great choice of a single - but just how Tool manages to release unedited over 6 minute singles and still having a raging success plus lots of airplay, is just beyond my comprehension.

Things get darked and even more intriguing towards the end. The "Lateralus", "Disposition" and "Reflection" segment is brilliant and totally Toolesque in every way, from the constantly odd and changing time signatures, to Danny Carey's brilliant drumming, Maynard's soulful voice while guitarrist Adam Jones - who is responsible for all the art work and video production - handles procedures rather well. "Triad" wraps things up but not without the weirdest recording of someone rather excitedly talking about aliens and Area 51.

I find it very difficult to convey the power and genious this album contains and I'm sure I haven't done a good job on that department. Listen for yourself because this album is truly a landmark of progressive metal in the new millenium. Granted, Tool is not for everyone but this is an essential in every proghead collection.

prla | 5/5 |

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