Lateralus (/ˌlætəˈræləs/) is the third studio album by American rock band Tool. It was released on May 15, 2001 through Volcano Entertainment. The album was recorded at Cello Studios in Hollywood and The Hook, Big Empty Space, and The Lodge, in North Hollywood, between October 2000 and January 2001. David Bottrill, who had produced the band’s two previous releases Ænima and Salival, produced the album along with the band. On August 23, 2005, Lateralus was released as a limited edition two-picture-disc vinyl LP in a holographic gatefold package.
The album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, selling more than 555,200 copies in its first week of release. It was certified double platinum by the RIAA on August 5, 2003. On August 30, 2004, the album was certified silver by the BPI. It was also certified platinum in Australia, and double platinum in Canada. The band won the Grammy Award for Best Metal Performance for the song “Schism” in 2002. Lateralus was ranked No. 123 on the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame‘s “Definitive 200” list.
The Grudge—-Kicking off the release with a decidedly Prog feel, the bass heavy intro sends swirls of atmosphere around your head. The vocal enters….and then you get sharp bursts of music followed by atmosphere and then more sharp blasts. The vocal sounds a bit tortured and filled with a desperation and hurt that is almost painful. There are huge epic moments……I like this….but I just have to admit right out…I’ve never been a big fan.
Eon Blue Apocalypse—-Jangly guitar and a instrumental swirl adds to the dankness of the record here. It is short lived and experimental in sound….one of those famed interludes.
The Patient—-There is no other word for this music than experimental and progressive. Everything seems so layered in different sounds and tones…..you never quite no where the song is going to go. The vocal is classic Alternative in sound….delivered with angst and huge flourishes of expression. I just can’t seem to find any structure to these songs…..there are some brilliant huge elements to the song…which I like. I just wish it all felt like it was meaning something to me personally.
Mantra—-Another odd little interlude that leads us towards…..
Schism—-With what seems to be the centerpiece of this release, the music has little variance from that we have heard thus far. The vocal is much more upfront in the song…with overlays that make it more textured and layered. The whole thing just takes so long to really get started and formulate for me. I don’t hate this…but I will say….Tool has never produced a song I’m in love with. Just not my band I guess….and that is why we are all different.
Parabol—-Odd at the onset and full of desolate sounds and vocals, this is rather haunting and pretty at times. I can tap into the emotional quality of the vocal and the stripped bare instrumentation….but I keep waiting for something more….but I can’t find it. Perhaps I lack taste….lol
Parabola—-And finally the song becomes alive with this built in sequel to the monotony of the previous track. This has a magic melody line that sucked me in right away…I actually rather like this….it has powerful guitars…incredible drums and still maintains the tortured vocal of the previous track. Really nice!
Ticks And Leeches—-A huge drum intro……building and building….filling me with the promise of something grand to become of all of this. The guitars are interesting and then the drums seem to explode…leading you into a journey of a vocal I have never heard from this band. this is pretty stellar…who knew Maynard had it in him to scream like that and deliver lines full of such venom. Pretty good second half of the release for me…I rather like this.
Lateralus—-Returning to the more familiar experimental sounds of earlier tracks, this song seems to take a lifetime to formulate any kind of clear direction. Suddenly huge guitars blast you and you find yourself back in a comfortable range. The vocal comes on the stage….sounding nothing like the last few tracks…..we are again sitting in Alternative-Progressive slop. This is not a favorite……there are high points….but the whole thing is too damn moody for me.
Disposition—-Sounding, at the onset, like everything else mundane on this record. Where is the energy and the vigor…this is all to flat for me…..the guitars are forever and a lifetime to get going….the drums are nowhere…the odd instrumentation rubbing on my cerebellum like a cheese grater. Please…….enough already.
Reflection—-I literally feel empty and without inspiration at this point……there is nothing here that comes close to appealing to me. I could not imagine sitting through an entire concert of this. Really…..and people simply adore this band.
Triad—-Coming back with a bit of steam after the tedious feel of the last few tracks, I still find a lack of inspiration and direction. This is just experimental noise that does nothing for me.
Faalp De Oiad—-I’m done!
**1/2 out of 5