Break out the Tool box for Day 6 of Ten of the Best Albums of the 90s…

And now, for something completely different:

Tool Aenima

I first have to say yes, it is, just say it with me, people: enema.  That is the way you say it.  I’ve heard some Tool fans try to dispute this, but, please, listen to the lyrics to my favorite title track.  It’s about flushing it all away.  He’s talking about a renewal.  Flushing out all the crap in the world and starting anew.  Tool has an interesting fan base.  They’re heavy; they have in-your-face messages that some people find too blatant or profane; oh, and they’re absolutely PHENOMENAL.  I have always called Tool “the thinker’s band.”  Each musician is so insanely talented that when you put them all together it’s like a musical coma.  I mean nothing bad by this–it’s simply that they are so inebriating to the mind that all else tends to dissappear and you, yourself, get lost in sound and emotion. At least, that is what Tool has always been for me.  This album, their sophomore to Undertow (another insanely amazing first), is what hooked me.  Though you might be in a Tool-induced coma, that doesn’t mean that you won’t move–in fact, I’ve often proclaimed you must be without a pulse if some part of your body doesn’t girate to this power-packed, bass-heavy beat.  Add to that, Maynard’s incredibly dynamic voice and Adam’s angry riffs–and you’ve got bliss.  Put in the oven at 350…sorry…sounded like a recipe forming.  So what tracks inflame me with Toolopia?  “46 & 2” because I’m a bassist, and because of all the aforementioned reasons.  “Stinkfist” because of the spitting anger that helps emotional management.  On the surface, one might be repelled by the verbal images this illicits, however, it is about Maynard’s frustration with the military (he served.)  It’s a good one, either way, for a bad day.  “Eulogy” and, of course, “Aenima.”  There’s something incredible about the musicality of “Aemina” that astounds me.  The build, the lyrics, the dynamics in the climax–it can’t really be fully appreciated in words, so do yourself a favor:  get some headphones, eliminate distraction–and go listen.  One final thing (though I could rant about a billion more) I’d like to say about this album is that so many people mistake “Die Eier von Satan” as being anti-semitic.  No.  It’s a Jewish recipe recited like an anti-semitic speech, as in, to make the point of hatred being wrong.  Tool: 1,000,000 squared, the universe, well, we don’t lose, do we, because we have the former.

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