TOOL: Scotiabank Arena (11/12)

TOOL: Scotiabank Arena (11/12)

I’m not a Tool fan, nor have I ever been a Tool fan.

I’m not a Tool fan, nor have I ever been a Tool fan.

tool play in the dark in front of blue visuals
PHOTO CREDIT:

I’m not a Tool fan, nor have I ever been a Tool fan. I make no apologies for that. It’s not that I dislike Tool— it’s just that their particular brand of musicality has never resonated with me in a meaningful way. With that in mind, attending a sold-out stadium show doesn’t come without a certain degree of imposter syndrome. I was an undercover agent, a duplicitous critic that could have been ousted at any moment. When I was accosted in the bathroom lineup by Ben, a hyperactive superfan decked head-to-toe with metal merch, a dark black Gojira graphic tee and a bright red Slipknot cap come to mind, I was convinced my cover was blown. Thankfully, my limited knowledge managed to maintain the ruse. But while I did not belong, the existing predilections of this lying piece of shit reviewer did allow for objectivity. And in the face of my bias, I have to say, I left the show impressed.

It may be improper form to talk about the visuals before the music, but anyone aware of Tool’s live setup know its monumental contribution. The stage was surrounded by a stringed curtain where images would be projected around and within, creating a stimulating, three-dimensional experience. Anyone taking advantage of Canadian legalization laws were surely in for a trip. Kudos to the visual editor who managed to cut on beat to drummer Danny Carey’s lightspeed bpm, a meticulous and strenuous process I’m sure.

There wasn’t a dull moment in the setlist. Vocalist Maynard James Keenan hit every note with flair. Distinguished Tool aficionado and Smack guest writer Austin Singh told me that “Keenan hasn’t sounded that good in years.” It was a smorgasbord of Tool’s tight discography, the Fear Inoculum cuts feeling right at home with ”Schism” and “Forty Six & 2”.  The 12-minute performance of “Pneuma” left me particularly awestruck. The MVP of the night was, of course, Danny Carey, whose standout moments include his superstar drum solo on “Chocolate Chip Trip” and a crazy moment when he came out on stage with a gong. I watched that man play a gong in ways I didn’t know were possible. Someone pass me a cigarette.

It didn’t change my life, but it was hard to leave the Tool concert without being moved by the talent displayed. Big budget productions should take the audience on a ride that cannot be experienced from the record alone. Tool have this down to a science— the results are admirable.

check out our reviews for Undertow and Ænima.

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TOOL: Scotiabank Arena (11/12)

City:
Toronto, ON
Venue:
Scotiabank Arena
Promised Show Time:
9:00 PM
Actual Show Time:
9:05 PM
Duration:
130 min
Opening Acts:
Killing Joke
Overall Score:
A

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I’m not a Tool fan, nor have I ever been a Tool fan. I make no apologies for that. It’s not that I dislike Tool— it’s just that their particular brand of musicality has never resonated with me in a meaningful way. With that in mind, attending a sold-out stadium show doesn’t come without a certain degree of imposter syndrome. I was an undercover agent, a duplicitous critic that could have been ousted at any moment. When I was accosted in the bathroom lineup by Ben, a hyperactive superfan decked head-to-toe with metal merch, a dark black Gojira graphic tee and a bright red Slipknot cap come to mind, I was convinced my cover was blown. Thankfully, my limited knowledge managed to maintain the ruse. But while I did not belong, the existing predilections of this lying piece of shit reviewer did allow for objectivity. And in the face of my bias, I have to say, I left the show impressed.

It may be improper form to talk about the visuals before the music, but anyone aware of Tool’s live setup know its monumental contribution. The stage was surrounded by a stringed curtain where images would be projected around and within, creating a stimulating, three-dimensional experience. Anyone taking advantage of Canadian legalization laws were surely in for a trip. Kudos to the visual editor who managed to cut on beat to drummer Danny Carey’s lightspeed bpm, a meticulous and strenuous process I’m sure.

There wasn’t a dull moment in the setlist. Vocalist Maynard James Keenan hit every note with flair. Distinguished Tool aficionado and Smack guest writer Austin Singh told me that “Keenan hasn’t sounded that good in years.” It was a smorgasbord of Tool’s tight discography, the Fear Inoculum cuts feeling right at home with ”Schism” and “Forty Six & 2”.  The 12-minute performance of “Pneuma” left me particularly awestruck. The MVP of the night was, of course, Danny Carey, whose standout moments include his superstar drum solo on “Chocolate Chip Trip” and a crazy moment when he came out on stage with a gong. I watched that man play a gong in ways I didn’t know were possible. Someone pass me a cigarette.

It didn’t change my life, but it was hard to leave the Tool concert without being moved by the talent displayed. Big budget productions should take the audience on a ride that cannot be experienced from the record alone. Tool have this down to a science— the results are admirable.

check out our reviews for Undertow and Ænima.

-

-

-

TOOL: Scotiabank Arena (11/12)

City:
Toronto, ON
Venue:
Scotiabank Arena
Promised Show Time:
9:00 PM
Actual Show Time:
9:05 PM
Duration:
130 min
Opening Acts:
Killing Joke
Overall Score:
A

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