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Weekly Update 18-Sept-2017

Only the second edition of this weekly update thing, and already I feel like I have bugger all to write about.  Strap yourselves in for a bunch of somewhat vaguely relevant “Tool” news!

In this weeks edition:

  • Aenima turns 21
  • Tool + Taylor Swift Mashup
  • Signed “Chet Zar: I Like To Paint Monsters” DVD Documentary
  • New music I’ve enjoyed this week!

Aenima turns 21

Moreso than Undertow, I think Aenima should be considered Tool’s breakthrough album, as it signaled to the world the direction this band would take in years to come.  It was released back on September 17 in 1996, and given that I became a Tool fan not long after it’s release, I guess 21st anniversary of Tool fandom is coming up as well.

No real fanfare from the band, no collectors edition re-issue (though Danny did hint a little while back that their old albums are going to be remastered/issued).  If you’re lucky enough to own it on vinyl, give it a spin for me.

Tool + Taylor Swift Mashup

Look what you made me do:

Signed “Chet Zar: I Like To Paint Monsters” DVD Documentary

A guy called OD emailed me today, telling me he had the opportunity to catch up with artist Chet Zar recently.  He says that the really liked Chet Zar’s DVD I Like To Paint Monsters and we should all go out and buy a copy.  It includes his relationship with Adam Jones and involvement with Tool and also his involvement with the “Hellboy” movies amongst other topics.  I’m yet to check it out, but it’s always been on my list to do so.  You can get signed copies for $25, so sounds like a good deal!

Music

The last few weeks have been good for music, here’s a few albums I’ve enjoyed, that perhaps you might too.  Have a recommendation?  Let me know!

  • 90s rock band Living Colour have a new album out called Shade – it’s great worth a listen!
  • Mastodon will be putting out an EP soon called Cold Dark Place.  You can check out the first track off it called Toe to Toes here.  Speaking of Mastodon, I think Emperor of Sand is one of my favorite albums from this year.
  • Aussie prog metal band Mish put out a great album earlier this year called Entheogen.  Check it out

  • Primus released the next song off their forthcoming album called The Scheme.  I really enjoyed this, as well as the first track.  Album is shaping up to be an excellent one!

That’s all for this week.  If you have anything to share, let me know!

Weekly Update 11-Sept-2017

Things are moving so slowly in Tool land at the moment, I’ve run out of material (and motivation) for regular posts.  So while Tool are in stealth mode (likely for the rest of the year I expect) rather than bombarding you with with stuff that is only somewhat interesting, I’ll do a weekly update.  This update will include Tool related stuff, relevant side projects, and even a few updates from bands that have supported Tool, or I feel would generally interest Fourtheye readers.

In this weeks episode:

  • Justin gets a new bass
  • The Art of Work, with Maynard James Keenan
  • The Melvins rate legal weed

Got anything that might interest Fourtheye readers?  Let me know!

Justin gets a new bass

Adam posted on Instagram a pic of Justin with his new Warwick bass.

~ S o m e b o d y ~ got a new custom bass ~ sounds so amazing*

A post shared by Adam Jones (@adamjones_tv) on

Some of you may notice the whiteboard behind, suggesting that perhaps they’re working on new stuff.  Frequent AJ followers on Instagram may have also noticed

The Art of Work, with Maynard James Keenan

Maynard is featuring in a number of short episodes recorded for the Revolver website, in which he discusses a range of topics – mostly about what inspires him to make music and wine.

Part 3 and 4 are yet to arrive, but keep your eyes peeled

The Melvins rate Legal Weed

The Melvins are always good for a laugh, and this interview for Pitchfork media has a few solid chuckles:

Don’t forget they have a newish album A Walk with Love & Death (which isn’t bad).  And Dale has a solo album called The Fickle Finger of Fate (which is better).

Justin’s custom pedal & A Perfect Circle tickets

There’s no real Tool news at the moment (nor will there be for some time I suspect) so we have to make do with some news that is only kinda interesting, depending on what floats your boat.

Anyway, what floats my boat are guitar pedals, and Justin Chancellorr has a fancy custom version of one by boutique pedal vendor KHDK Electronics.  It’s based on their overdrive pedal called Abyss, and has some cool art as you can see below.  Nothing to suggest this is going to turn into something you can buy, but seems cool none the less.

Did you guys remember that A Perfect Circle are touring later this year?  Well they are, with dates across the US.  If you’re too tight to pay for your own ticket, you could try entering the competition at Metal Sucks, who are giving away a few tickets for every non-Festival show on the tour.  The price is being spammed endlessly by Metal Sucks and A Perfect Circle.  Good luck!

Danny confirms that Tool remasters are in the works?

On Reddit the other day some chap called cptsweatpantz decided to start an online petition to get Tool to re-release their albums on vinyl.  A noble suggestion, however was met with the usual cries of “online polls don’t do shit!” – something I agree with despite signing anyway.

Lo and behold the creator of the petition receives an email from Danny Carey (screenshot of which is below) in which he says:

The petition won’t really matter.  We are already in the process of remastering all of our albums for release on vinyl in the near future.

Thanks for your enthusiasm Josh,

D.C.

Good news on the surface of things, since I suspect many would embrace the opportunity to grab some legitimate, and reasonably priced Tool vinyl.  “Near future”  can be taken to mean anytime between now and End Times.

It should be pointed out that it’s pretty easy to spoof email addresses, so I’d suggest some caution here (though I have no real reason to doubt this random Reddit guy).  Fingers crossed it’s legit though.

Email from Danny confirming Tool vinyl remastering

John Ziegler’s Stroke Recovery Fund

Sad news this morning in that it appears Volto! and Pigmy Love Circus guitarist John Z has recently suffered from a serious stroke.  My understanding of the US Medical system, is that it’s mostly a joke, so financially John appears to be under much strain.  A Gofundme account has been set up, and I’d encourage those with a few spare dollars to send some his way.

John “Johnny Z” Ziegler is a very well-respected and adored guitarist/musician in the Los Angeles music community and beyond. A dedicated player and sought after instructor, he is known for his band Volto!, as well as the groups Pygmy Love Circus and Zime – and of course as the ringleader of the Monday Night Jamz at the legendary Baked Potato Jazz Club for the past 12+ years.

On July 16th, 2017, John suffered a devastating stroke while alone in his home. In distress for an indeterminate amount of time, he was eventually able to reach his phone and signal for help. Paramedics arrived soon thereafter and transported him to Glendale Adventist Medical Center.

The stroke has affected John’s speech, vision, and entire right side of his body. While tests are ongoing to uncover the extent of any further damage, the doctors and therapists are optimistic he can regain function. Those that know him will be happy to hear John’s larger than life personality still shines bright, with his humor and signature charm very much intact. However, there is a lot of uncertainty ahead in his long road to recovery.

Due to this life-altering event, John is unable to perform and therefore support himself. He is in dire need of assistance to get him through this tough time that will undoubtedly require lengthy physical therapy to regain his playing ability.

The money raised here will go to the following:
– Medical & Therapy Expenses (including the potential purchase of a medical bed)
– Daily Care
– Transportation
– General Monthly Living Expenses

John’s immediate family lives in Texas, and are communicating with doctors to determine the best course of action. Meanwhile, the expenses are overwhelming, and will continue to mount. Any support you are able to provide will help give John the best shot at recovery and alleviate the increasing financial strain he and his family are under. Thank you for your help in getting Brother John Z back on stage where he belongs.

Maynard talks Tool and other things with Joe Rogan

Maynard James Keenan spoke with Joe Rogan on his podcast this week, and covers a range of the usual topics you’d expect – wine making, fighting, discipline, the music industry, his love for cross-stitching and of course, Tool.  As with Maynard’s other chats with Rogan, it’s an interesting listen, and great to hear him speak in a more relaxed, between friends manner than the usual defensive style taken with clickbait focused music journalists.

But let’s face it, Tool is what most of us want to know about (that bit starts at around the 1:22 mark on the video embedded below).  Specifically Maynard discusses frustrations, but also understanding and acceptance of the current writing process.  He also mentions that there are several tracks ready for vocals, and others in the works as well.  Though nothing is complete yet, he does mention that he had worked on vocals for a track, only to find when he returned to the band it had changes so much they were no longer relevant.

I came away from the interview feeling pretty good about where the album is at.  It appeared to me that Maynard feels good about what has been written so far.  There are obvious frustrations, but he seems at peace with where it’s at.  Some question if we’ll ever see another album from Tool, but for me this interview definitely made me feel it’s more of a “when” situation rather than “if”

So, my take on all this is that songwriting continues.  It’s not going to wind up any time soon.  I don’t think anyone should have expectations of Tool recording anytime this year.  I’d go so far as to say we’re unlikely to see a Tool album before this time next year.

New Melvins album, interview and tour dates

It’s all go for the Melvins at the moment, with a new album just released, a cool interview with Buzz and Mackie Osborne as well as tour dates for Australia and Europe.

Firstly, their latest album A Walk with Love & Death is now out via Ipecac Recordings.  This time around it features Steven McDonald from Redd Kross on Bass.  The first disc Death is somewhat traditional Melvins-fare, however the second; Love is a score to the Jesse Nieminen directed, self-produced short also titled A Walk With Love & Death.

We have a couple of Melvin’s tours (the current Steven McDonald version) visiting Australia and Europe in the coming months.  In both cases Redd Kross will be supporting, and I’ll definitely be checking them out when they hit Down Under.

Finally, there’s a cool video interview with Buzz and Mackie Osborne up on LA Weekly – well worth checking out!

Justin discusses the new album with Metal Sucks

Metal Sucks have today published a Podcast which contains a 10 minute interview with Justin Chancellor, where he talks about progress on the new Tool album, and their love of playing live.  While the interview is short on much concrete information, Justin does mention that he believes the new album is about 90% done.  He declined to give any indication of when it would be released though.

It’s an insightful interview, so well worth your time.

Tool Summer 2017 tour wrapup

The Tool Summer 2017 tour is done; capped off with a huge show at San Bernadino this evening. I’ve been holding back posting much about the tour, as I don’t really want to spoil it for those who are attending shows, but now that were all done, here’s a re-cap of what went down:

  • Tool played much the same setlist each night.  It was a pretty good one, though some are critical that it doesn’t include Lateralus:
    • The Grudge
    • Parabol
    • Parabola
    • Schism (typically the extended version)
    • Opiate (the new extended version – more on this further down)
    • Ænema
    • Descending
    • Jambi
    • Third Eye
    • Forty-Six & 2
    • ~12 minute intermission
    • Drum Solo
    • The Pot/Vicarious/Eulogy
    • Sweat
    • Stinkfist (typically the extended version)
  • Vicarious was played at most shows, with Eulogy once in Hershey, PA and then The Pot at several others.  Those at the San Bernadino show were lucky enough to see both Vicarious and The Pot.
  • The Pot was accompanied by some cool new video footage some speculate may be the video that was recorded for it sometime many years ago.  There has been no official confirmation of this.

  • The stage configuration was similar to the past couple of tours, with a few new lights in stage, as well as lasers placed in the centre of the main video wall (which made for a few cool effects).  Despite bans on recording, there’s plenty of footage of the show on Youtube for those curious.
  • The posters for the shows were variations of the bug theme used on recent tours.  While this may seem a little disappointing, the poster quality was pretty high with a foil type paper used on many of them. (image pinched from pooptank55 on Reddit)

  • The San Bernadino show had a one off poster by Adi Granov.  Image taken from Adi Granov’s Instagram account

  • Speaking of San Bernadino, despite a few suggestions otherwise there didn’t appear to be much “special” about the set.  As previously mentioned, they played a song longer than usual, but there were no guest slots from what I’ve heard.  Given the quality of the support acts, no doubt it was a great day, but the Tool set didn’t appear to be much out of the ordinary.
  • From the videos I’ve watched, I have to say the band are in really good nick.  Maynard’s vocals are as good as they’ve been for quite some time now, in fact probably the strongest since 10,000 Days.
  • Reports from the VIP sessions sound like they were much the same as those in the past, with one important distinction – attendees were shown part of the new video for Opiate (which is strongly suspected to be the “curveball” Blair has referred too over the years).  The whole video wasn’t shown, but what was shown was reportedly excellent.  Accompanying the video is a new recording of the extended version of the song, including new vocals from Maynard.  Nor release date for this was given, though I read that Adam suggested this could be released digitally at the appropriate time.

Here’s a collection of reviews from the tour:

tl;dr a couple of minor surprises, otherwise the same old (albeit high quality) Tool show

 

Justin talks about San Bernadino show

Adam had his chance, now Justin Chancellor speaks OC Weekly about the San Bernadino Tool show coming up this weekend.  He opens up a bit about some of the other acts playing on the weekend including Primus:

“My fourth gig I ever did with Tool was at the Oakland Coliseum. We supported Primus,” Chancellor said. “I was like 25 and it was all very overwhelming. To come full circle and be touring with them last year, and actually not be quite so intimidated and shy, and be able to strike up some relationships with these people has been really fantastic.”

 

 

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