After 10,000 Days people really yearned for a new album by the American masters of polyrhythm. Thirteen years later, a new album was released. It had a lot to live up to, could it sate Tool fans hunger for new songs?
As a fairly new Tool fan it’s difficult for me to answer that question. Tool has been with me for over 10 years, so it’s not a new acquaintance, but a dear friend I greet in Fear Inoculum.
In typical Tool manner, the main songs are accompanied by shorts songs that meld them together by introducing themes for the upcoming songs. Fear Inoculum works both as a whole album listen and as seperate tracks. I do though recommend to listen to it in its entirety the first couple of times.
The track that first stood out to be my first couple of listens was Pneuma, the second track of the album. Its tension, tranquility and repetitive nature really speaks to me, almost hypnotising. Chancellor’s bassparts accompanied by Danny Carey’s drumplay is one of the outstanding parts of this song. Carey play is also one of the outstanding features of the whole album. All around solid drums.
All songs are special and I do recommend everyone that enjoy complex music to listen to this album. The music get more space compared to earlier albums whereas the vocals is a bit more shy. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t deliver, it sure does, but in a more modest manner.
One other standout song, that took a bit longer for me to get was the epic ending of the album. 7empest is a 15 minute marvel that features some really amazing guitar pieces from Adam Jones. The intro with its polyrhythmic alternating arpeggio patterns that are followed by heavier distorted guitar and bass, really gives the endingpart of the album an very worthy start. The following 14 minutes are as gripping.
The tracks that hasn’t been mentioned are by no means slouches, they are very potent tracks. The titular Fear Inoculum is aslow but intense experience, that gets better and better the more you listen to it.
I can’t give this anything else than a huge recommendation or anyone that want to challenges themselves.