TOOL'S NEW ALBUM: THE STORY SO FAR
Thirteen years after 10,000 Days, a new Tool record will see the light of day in 2019. So what the hell have they been doing in the meantime?
On May 1, Tool release 10,000 Days, the eagerly anticipated follow-up to 2001’s Lateralus. They will spend the next couple of years touring it heavily, before playing sporadic dates and smaller tours thereafter, particularly across the US.
A blog post appears quoting bassist Justin Chancellor, saying new material is already on the table, and that: “pretty much every week there’s new stuff. There’ll be another album, but I can’t say when.” He wasn’t kidding.
In August, Tool headline the Manchester Apollo. They haven’t been back since, their headline set at Download this June serving as their first UK show in nearly 12 years.
Frontman Maynard James Keenan seemingly backs what Justin has already suggested, telling MTV in February that they are gonna be writing the next album “right away”. “The music always comes first,” he adds. Just not in any actual race, it seems.
With various members spending time on other people’s music (racking up appearances on tracks by the likes of Isis, Intronaut, Jubilee and The Human Experimente), it looks like no significant progress has been made on a new Tool record. There’s a glimmer of hope in a newsletter post from the band in March, claiming that the rest of the band are working on new material while Maynard is on tour with Puscifer.
Despite a scattering of shows in that time, two more years pass with little in the way of concrete news, before the band’s webmaster claims in December that he’s heard new music, though it was “sans Maynard”. He also admits that he “cannot say” how close the album is to completion. Yeah, no shit.
In a year many fans start to hope that we might actually see new Tool music, 2013 kicks off with the bizarre news that progress on the album is delayed because of two separate scooter accidents. Fuck knows what’s going on.
In February, Maynard tells a Chilean radio station that there’ll be no new album in 2013, but drummer Danny Carey seems to think otherwise. He suggests to New Zealand’s The Rock FM that it’ll come “sometime this year… that’s all I can say”. Spoiler: it doesn’t. Danny later concedes that “early 2014” is more likely. On a podcast in August, Maynard says he’s about to start work... but the interview is from March.
“The fans are pissed at us,” admits guitarist Adam Jones in July when he provides the latest update, claiming that a big lawsuit owing to a disagreement over artwork is adding to its delay. Boooo! “The whole thing is really depressing,” adds Danny. You’re telling us, pal.
With their legal problems out of the way come March, Adam says all focus is now on the new album. Woooo! “That fire that burned in us in our
20s isn’t there any more,” he adds, however. “So we’re relaxed and meeting occasionally.” Boooo!
In September, we head to Maynard’s Arizona vineyard for a chat. “I’m reluctant to say anything about Tool,” he tells us, before banging on about grapes. Helpful.
“THE FANS ARE PISSED AT US” ADAM JONES
Maynard appears in more combative mood in October, replying to Rolling Stone’s questions about the new record with a flat: “Do I seem like a lazy person to you?” Still, the band begin airing part of a new song entitled Descending. There’s a glimmer of hope!
In April, that helpful webmaster is back, claiming that there are “only a couple” of songs left to finish. Woooo!
Justin tells Bass Player in December that Tool are “deep into the writing process”. Given they were well into the writing process three years ago, this doesn’t feel very insightful.
Danny tells Loudwire in December that we will “definitely” see a new Tool album in 2018. Here we go! It’s finally going to turn up!
Narrator voice: It doesn’t turn up. Danny says in January that he hopes the album will come before May, but is contradicted by Maynard a few days later, who remains in A Perfect Circle mode and tweets the album is “not coming out this summer.”
In March, a cryptic Instagram post from Danny suggests recording is due to start – backed by a statement on Tool’s website that reads: “the recording process is about to begin”.
Maynard wins the coveted Idol award at the Metal Hammer Golden God Awards in London, telling an excited crowd: “You’re gonna see some new music next year.” We also discover that 10,000 Days knob-twiddler Joe Barresi will be involved on the production side once again. In October, the next chapter of Tool being underway is confirmed with the announcement of a flurry of 2019 dates – most significantly headlining the Sunday night at Download. Tool! Back in the UK! Woooo!
As the New Year dawns, all signs point to new Tool music coming this side of summer. Surely they won’t play Download with no new material to air, will they? Stranger things have happened, but we’re pretty sure we will be knee-deep in spiralling, bollock-heavy riffs come June. We’re calling it: this is the year where we will
finally, finally, get a new album.
…maybe. TOOL’S NEW ALBUM IS EXPECTED TO LAND LATER THIS YEAR. THEY HEADLINE DOWNLOAD ON JUNE 16
this is what happens when we’re left to use the same promo photo for five years running