Tool must have been rehearsing today, and guitar player Adam Jones decided to live stream them tearing through The Grudge on Instagram. For your listening pleasure:
In a recent interview with Kerrang magazine, Danny Carey spoke about Legends of the Seagullmen as well as a slightly more in depth update on the new Tool album. There are no particularly insightful revelations, and Danny does joke around with 2018 and 2019 a bit, which suggest to me maybe he’s not super confident of it being this year (though he does go on to reaffirm it will be 2018).
In points worth noting (which I’ve somewhat paraphrased):
- He says Adam and Justin come up with the weirdest shit and he tries to anchor and simplify it.
- Maynard then has the ability to simplify it further
- The tracks are long. Too long for the radio
- The new music “definitely sounds like Tool, but it’s an evolution” hence the title on the magazine cover.
Danny also recent spoke with MusicRadar, again mostly about Legend of the Seagullmen. This one is a pretty interesting read, though it doesn’t go into Tool much except for the now standard “definitely this year” line about the new album.
In my opinion – it’s great to see Danny speaking with confidence about the new album. There’s little doubt in my mind they’re now on the home stretch. As to whether it’ll be out in 2018? I’m still a little skeptical for now, though I am reasonably confident we’ll at least see them recording this year. For me the hype train is firmly in the station, until they confirm hitting the studio…
Yesterday I dropped the Fourtheye Readers Top 10, now today I present my own top 10 albums on 2017.
The list is presented loosely in order. Overall I thought it was a pretty solid year for albums, with a few newer bands I’d been keeping my eyes on releasing some excellent albums. There seems to be a few less older or nostalgia acts releasing albums these days, so probably many who haven’t listening to anything new since 2000 probably think it’s been a weaker year. Good music is where you find it – stop looking and you’ll stagnate!
Code Orange – Forever
Forever was released early in 2017, but was a constant through out my playlists all year. The album is on that is full of surprises, and at numerous points on first listen had me wondering if there was something wrong with the stream. An easy 10/10 for me and first choice for my top 10
Mastodon – Emperor of Sand
The last few albums from Mastodon have mostly done away with the progressive angle of their music, and moved towards a more mainstream sound. With the addition of Brann’s clean vocals a few albums ago (he sings on almost every track this time around) the band sites nicely in the niche between the more popular styles of rock. It’s not all bad though, this time around it feels to me like they’ve almost mastered their current sound, and Emperor of Sand is by far the best of their “standard rock” albums. It culminates with a slightly more progressive track – Jaguar God, which was probably my favorite song of 2017.
Death From Above 1979 – Outrage! Is Now
The second album from these guys since their reformation – the first of which was pretty forgettable. This one however, seems to up the ante a little – embracing pop a little less, and adding a few heavier and more diverse sounds to the repertoire. It’s also pretty catchy as well!
Dead Cross – Dead Cross
Dead Cross are a band made up of Dave Lombardo (of Slayer and Fantomas fame) as well as a couple of guys from noise/grind band The Locust formed. The asked Mike Patton to join them, and the result was released in 2017. It’s pretty much a straight up hardcore album, and doesn’t really add anything new to the genre, but it’s a fun listen (not sure what’s up with this video though!).
Primus – The Desaturating Seven
Primus seem to love Rush, and I always wished they’d head down that prog path a little further. This album doesn’t really sound like Rush, but it is a little more progressive, which is something I can get behind. My only real criticism of this (and it’s a common one) is that it’s pretty short, and the songs kinda sound a bit samey. Still, it’s a good same, and an album I’m happy to include in my top 10.
Employed to Serve – The Warmth of a Dying Sun
A late arrive to my playlists for 2017, the track I Spend My Days (Wishing Them Away) has one of the chunkiest riffs I’ve heard in quite some time. The rest of the album is pretty great as well!
Power Trip – Nightmare Logic
These guys are the cool new metal band, seeming reaching countless top 10 lists in 2017. It’s easy to discount these hype bands sometimes, but in this case the album is a great collection of thrashy metal, with no real dull moments. Dig your teeth into it!
The Black Angels – Death Song
I love a good psychedelic rock album, and I thought this year was a pretty quiet one for this genre. The Black Angels didn’t disappoint though, with what I think might be their best album yet.
Couch Slut – Contempt
This Wisconsin punk band Couch Slut released an abrasive collection of noisy tunes in July this year, and it’s an album I keep coming back too. The lyrics and vocals as are confronting as their name suggests, but containing within the chaos is some pretty great songwriting.
The results are in for the Fourtheye Readers Top 10 Albums of 2017. The poll didn’t get a huge amount of entries this year (partially my fault, since I didn’t push it too hard) but also a reflection of lower traffic these days on Fourtheye (I think partly to to many now consuming Tool news via various Social Media channels rather than older style websites).
Anyway, without further delay, here are the results, as well as my thoughts on these albums.
1. Mastodon – Emperor of Sand
Seeing this as number 1 on this list wasn’t a huge surprise for me (in fact it’ll rate quite highly on my list as well). Mastodon are a band that inspire plenty of discussion, mostly people lamenting that they’re not as good as they used to be. While I don’t disagree, I the band aren’t trying to be that same band that recorded Leviathan. Emperor of Sand is the best album they’ve put out this decade, and could well be the high point of modern-era Mastodon.
2. Queens of the Stone Age – Villains
Queens of the Stone Age are a long time favorite of Tool fans, and while I thought this album was pretty forgettable, it seems to be good enough that many of you nominated it. QOTSA notably brought on a pop producer for this album, which added a subtle pop vibe to the album, but ultimately was let down by bland songwriting.
3. At The Drive In – In*ter*a*lia
Relationship of Command was an easy 10/10 album. A few years back At The Drive In reformed, and as many reformed acts do wrote a new album, this time without one of their main songwriters. The results were mixed I though, some great tracks, and a bunch of filler.
4. Code Orange – Forever
Another album that will be featuring in my top 10 – Code Orange delivered a great album full of hardcore punk with several surprising moments. The album covers a range of punk moments, but also unexpectedly shifts into grunge, pop and even Nine Inch Nails sounding moments.
5. Pallbearer – Heartless
I’m not a huge fan of these guys, so only listened to this album once or twice. Pallbearer seem to be pretty popular among Tool fans though, and they’ve featured in these lists several times before.
6. Primus – The Desaturating Seven
Primus delivered another concept album, this time based on a children’s book The Rainbow Goblins. It features Justin Chancellor narrating on track 1 in case you missed it! I really enjoyed this album, it was step in a more progressive direction, which I think suits Primus really well. Only drawback was that it felt like a really short album.
7. Leprous – Malina
Never listened to this band before, and have it playing while I write this. Wikipedia tells me Leprous are a Norwegian progressive metal band. Based on what I’ve heard I’d categorise them a bit more as rock. The album isn’t bad – if Karnivool (and the like) are your thing then you’d likely enjoy it.
8. Elder – Reflections of a Floating World
The last Elder album was pretty great, and while this one didn’t quite live it to that, it’s a really solid effort from a very talented band!
9. Converge – The Dusk in Us
Converge are one of those punk bands that are considered cool enough that they are automatic inclusions into many top 10 lists. While I really like Converge, I didn’t think this album was anything special. If modern hardcore punk is your think though, make sure you check it out!
10. Steven Wilson – To The Bone
Well know progressive rock artist Steven Wilson is one who often rates highly among Tool fans. I listened to this album a few times earlier this year, and it sounds almost exactly like a Steven Wilson album. You know whether or not you’re going to enjoy this even before you listen!
The lineup for Coachella 2018 was announced today, and included on the diverse lineup is A Perfect Circle. They join the Sunday list, which also includes Portugal The Man, ODESZA, Kasmai Washington, Vance Joy and some white rapper best not mentioned.
Coachella takes place over two weekends in April.
A Perfect Circle have released another track from their yet unnamed new album, this one called Disillusioned.
Take a listen and let me know what you think in the comments below. I’m expecting the reaction will be as mixed as those to The Last Jedi…
Time flies very quickly these days, so much so that I forgot to create a Fourtheye Best Albums of 2017 poll a little earlier. Well, without further ado: here it is!
Here’s a list of stuff I’ve enjoyed so far this year, in case you’re stuck for ideas:
- Sepultura – Machine Messiah
- Code Orange – Forever
- Uniform – Wake In Fright
- Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes – Modern Ruin
- Priests – Nothing Feels Natural
- Ocean Grove – The Rhapsody Tapes
- Pissed Jeans – Why Love Now
- Crystal Fairy – Crystal Fairy
- Power Trip – Nightmare Logic
- Dead Kelly – Australian Made
- Darkest Hour – Godless Prophets and the Migrant Flora
- Mindsnare – Unholy Rush
- Pallbearer – Heartless
- Steel Panther – Lower the Bar
- Body Count – Bloodlust
- Havok – Conformicide
- STNNNG – Veterans of Pleasure
- The Black Angels – Death Song
- Terror – The Walls Will Fall
- Thurston Moore – Rock N Roll Consciousness
- He Is Legend – few
- At The Drive-In – in*ter a*li*a
- John Frum – A Stirring in the Noos
- Hiboux – Command the Earth to Swallow Me Up
- Bad Cop/Bad Cop – Warriors
- Beast Modulus – Being
- Municipal Waste – Slime and Punishment
- Bison – You Are Not The Ocean, You Are The Patient
- 88 Finger Louie – Thank You for Being a Friend
- Decapitated – Anticult
- Dead Cross – Dead Cross
- Justice for the Damned – Dragged Through the Dirt
- The National – Sleep Well Beast
- The Contortionist – Clairvoyant
- Death From Above 1979 – Outrage! Is Now
- Living Colour – Shade
- Prophets of Rage – Prophets of Rage
- Motherslug – The Electric Dunes of Titan
- Primus – The Desaturating Seven
- Metz – Strange Peace
- Unsane – Sterilize
- Daniele Luppi – MILANO
- The Body & Full of Hell – Ascending a Mountain of Heavy Light
- Dale Crover – The Fickle Finger of Fate
- Melvins – A Walk With Love And Death
- Dyscarnate – With All Their Might
- Mutoid Man – War Moans
- The Haunted – Strength In Numbers
- Glassjaw – Material Control
- Laibach – ALSO SPRACH ZARATHUSTRA
- Circle – Terminal
- Full of Hell – Trumpeting Escstacy
- Propagandhi – Victory Lap
- Godflesh – Post Self
Feel free to make some suggestions in the comment section below, or in the thread in the Fourtheye Forum.
There’s another update from Danny Carey in regards to the new Tool album floating around, and this is courtesy of Drum Magazine:
“It’s gonna be really good,” he said. “We’re really excited about it. We’re getting really close, too. We’re probably going to write the rest of this year and then start tracking early in the new year. So, it’ll be out some time in 2018.”
Good news it seems, and would suggest that Maynard is underway with his part of the songwriting process. Of course Maynard is well known for hosing down the other members of Tool in regards to progress, so lets take with a pinch of salt for now.
The rest of the interview is interesting, and probably skipped over by many. Danny talks about Legend of the Seagullmen as well as a new kit that Sonor are working with him on.
Tom Morello has reported on Instagram recently that he’s had a chance to check out the work in progress on the new Tool album:
Sounds like the body of evidence pointing to a new Tool album is growing. The when is still very much a question, but I don’t have any doubts this will happen, and hopefully soon.
In other Tool news, they’ve confirmed a second festival slot, this time as part of the Northern Invasion in Wisconsin. They will play the Sunday night on May 13th with Alice In Chains. A Perfect Circle taking part on Saturday. Tickets are a fair bit cheaper than Rock on the Range, though in my opinion the lineup much weaker.
Festivals not your thing? Hold fire and wait and see if there are a few Tool tour dates – I’d be surprised if there weren’t more added over the coming weeks.
On a recent MetalSucks podcast, in which they speak with Jimmy Hayward and Danny Carey, the pair discuss all things regarding Legend of Seagull, and intriguingly how it ties in with future Tool plans. It’s an interesting interview, though the audio is pretty poor, so hard to follow at times.
The take I’m sure that most of you are interested in, is where Danny talks about Tool’s future plans, going so far as to promise Tool will have something out in 2018:
Justin made us feel like Tool would have a new album out in 2018. On a scale of 1-10, how much did Justin lie to us?
Danny Carey: “He did not lie to you. On scale of how much he lied, it would be zero. It’ll be out. It’ll be out in 2018.”
So Danny is pretty convinced, and he reinforced this in a chat with Loudwire (where you can also hear the new Seagull track Shipswreck) as well:
“Yes. I’m saying definitely. We’ll probably have it done in the first half [of the year] if things go as planned. There’s setup times and manufacturing – I can never predict all that, it seems like it’s constantly evolving. [What time of year it will be out] I can’t tell you.”
Should we get excited yet? Probably not. Maynard hasn’t seem to hosed down the idea “yet”, but I don’t really think we’ll see anything released until late 2018 at best. Even then it’s hard to get too excited for something that has been in the works for so long. Danny is speaking quite positively, so it’s easy to assume that there are solid plans to record early in 2018.
Personally though, until we hear confirmation that Tool are recording, the lid will remain firmly on for me.