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Tool's greatest breakthrough was to meld dark underground metal with the ambition of art rock. Although Metallica wrote their multi-sectioned, layered songs as if they were composers, they kept their musical attack ferociously at street level. Tool didn't. They embraced the artsy, bohemian preoccupations of Jane's Addiction while they simultaneously paid musical homage to the relentlessly bleak visions of grindcore, death metal, and thrash. Even with their post-punk influences, they executed their music with the aesthetic of prog rock, alternating between long, detailed instrumental interludes and lyrical rants in their songs. Tool had a knack for conveying the strangled, oppressive angst that the alternative nation of the early '90s claimed as its own. So, Tool were able to slip into the definition of alternative rock during the post-Nirvana era, landing a slot on the third Lollapalooza tour in 1993, which helped their first full-length debut album, Undertow, rocket to platinum status. By the time the band delivered its belated follow-up, Ænima, in 1996, alternative rock had lost its grip on the mainstream of America, and Tool's audience had shaped up as essentially metal-oriented, which meant that the group and the record didn't capture as big an audience as their first album, despite debuting at number two on the charts. After a co-headlining slot with Korn on Lollapalooza '97 wrapped up, Tool remained on the road, supporting Ænima until well into the next year. During the band's usual extended hiatus between albums, Maynard James Keenan decided to use his downtime productively by forming a side project, dubbed A Perfect Circle. The band's 2000 debut, Mer de Noms, was a surprise hit, while the ensuing tour was a sold-out success as well. With Tool breakup rumors swirling, the band put the speculation to rest by re-entering the recording studio and issuing the stopgap B-sides/DVD set Salival late the same year. Finally, May 2001 saw the release of Tool's third full-length release, Lateralus, which debuted at the number one position on the Billboard album chart and became the band's biggest hit. After the obligatory several-year sabbatical to pursue other projects, the group returned with another chart-topper, 10,000 Days, in 2006. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine & Greg Prato
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Stations Featuring

    '90s Alternative

    '90s Alternative
    7 songs

    Hard Rock

    Hard Rock
    8 songs

    Progressive Rock

    Progressive Rock
    7 songs

    Alternative Party

    Alternative Party
    2 songs

    Xtreme Alt Rock

    1 song

Albums by

Top Songs by

  1.   Song
  2.   Sober
  3.   Forty Six & 2
  4.   Ænema
  5.   Schism
  6.   Prison Sex
  7.   Vicarious
  8.   Stinkfist
  9.   H.
  10.   The Pot
  11.   Jambi
  12.   Lateralus
  13.   Eulogy
  14.   Parabola
  15.   Undertow
  16.   Opiate
  17.   The Grudge
  18.   The Patient
  19.   Swamp Song
  20.   Right in Two
  21.   10,000 Days (Wings, Pt. 2)
  22.   Intolerance
  23.   Pushit
  24.   Wings for Marie, Pt. 1
  25.   Roseta Stoned
  26.   Sweat
  27.   Bottom by Henry Rollins
  28.   Jimmy
  29.   Third Eye
  30.   Hooker With A Penis
  31.   Crawl Away
  32.   Part of Me
  34.   Cold and Ugly
  35.   Parabol
  36.   Hush
  37.   Disposition
  38.   Jerk-Off
  39.   Ticks & Leeches
  40.   Flood
  41.   Intension
  42.   Message to Harry Manback
  43.   Lost Keys (Blame Hofmann)
  44.   Mantra
  45.   Disgustipated
  46.   Eon Blue Apocalypse
  47.   Useful Idiot
  48.   Triad
  49.   Intermission
  50.   Ions
  51.   Die Eier Von Satan
  52.   Viginti Tres
  53.   Lipan Conjuring
  54.   Reflection
  55.   Faaip de Oiad
  56.   Cesaro Summability
  57.   Bottom
  58.   Message to Harry Manback, No. 2
  59.   No Quarter
  60.   Merkaba
  61.   You Lied
  62.   L.A.M.C.
  63.   Intro/The Weight
  64.   Fermentation
  65.   Crystalisation
  66.   First Fruits
  67.   Further Out
  68.   Fractured
  69.   Whole
  70.   Splinters
  71.   A Gathering In
  72.   Forging Anew
  73.   Pippi Longstocking
  74.   Aenema
  75.   A Quiet Kind of Rebellion
  76.   A Ravenous Appetite
  77.   From a Different Galaxy
  78.   Impressive Credentials
  79.   Intro/A Bulls**t-Free Zone
  80.   Kaleidoscopic Multi-Colour
  81.   Seizing the Day
  82.   Striking Cold
  83.   Striking out on Your Own
  84.   Substance Over Image
  85.   Aufregende Interviews
  86.   Konzert/Studioaufnahmen
  87.   4 Degrees
  88.   Lateralis
  89.   40
  90.   Aenima

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