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Tool - Ænima CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

4.07 | 1053 ratings

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5 stars -Introduction

This is the second studio album from Tool (not counting "opiate" ep and "toolshed") and was released in 1996, three years after "Undertow". Tool had already showed how talented they were but Aenima is beyond any comparison. Aenima breaks new limits in music. The music enters territory that hasn't been touched (a phrase which Nic Potter used to describe Van Der Graaf Generator's early days). Paul D'Amour is replaced by Justin Chancellor. Tool's line-up hasn't changed since then.

-The members and Bill Hicks

Maynard James Keenan is a guy with a very unique voice. He manages to really get into the feeling of each song and give an amazing performance full of emotion. He is also an amazing live performer. His lyrics are really sophisticated and abstract. They can have multiple meanings and thus they are very interesting. He used to do stand-up comedy on improvisation nights in comedy clubs in Los Angeles. Maynard had also become friend with Bill Hicks who was a controversial American stand-up comedian, satirist and social critic. Bill Hicks died in 1994 and thus the cd is devoted to his memory. He is pictured on the booklet with the writing "another dead hero" and lyrics of songs like "Eulogy" and "Message to Harry Manback" for example refer to him somehow. In the beginning of the last track "Third Eye" you can hear Bill Hicks talking about drugs and music being writen under their influence.

Adam Jones who is considered to be the less "talented" musician proves everybody wrong showing what an amazing "riffman" he is. His sound is really unique and the guitar parts of Aenima are just perfect. Apart from his guitar skills he shows what an amazing visual artist he is creating amazing artwork for tool cds as well as the disturbing videos of the band.

Justin Chancellor proves that he deserves to be part of this band creating amazing bass lines and adding effects to the bass not seen in many other bassists. The bass lines are much more "progressive" than the ones written by Paul D'Amour on the previous releases.

Danny Carey is to me the brain of Tool. The drum parts are far from "smart". This guy is far ahead. In this album he also experiments a lot using electronic sounds ("stinkfist"and "eulogy"), polyrhythms (eulogy) and many difficult odd time signatures ("46 and 2" is a great example). He is surely one of the most interesting drummers in the modern rock scene. I highly recommend Tool to all drummers.

The result is a band with great musicianship, talented players with many abilities.


This cd is full of anger. The songs vary from powerful like "Jimmy" to atmospheric and chaotic like "Pushit". There are also many tracks which aren't really songs and are very interesting. I'm not going to do an analysis of each song cause that will lessen the experience of the first listen. The band shows that "humor belongs in music" with tracks like "Intermission" and "Die Eier Von Satan". From the first song "Stinkfist" to the 13 minutes "Third Eye" this album is full of highlights. Complex as you can't imagine but at the same time emotional. Masterpiece!

sularetal | 5/5 |


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