By Andrew Zerman | Guest Writer
It is not a common occasion for a rock band to top the Billboard 200 in an era that is saturated with plastic pop. It is also uncommon for a band with members in its 40s and 50s to reach the top of a chart that is dominated by millennials. However, a rock band by the name of Toolchanged this demographic, dethroning Taylor Swift’s Lover for the top spot. According to Forbes, they are the first rock band since The Dave Matthews Band in June of 2018 to hit the top spot of the Billboard 200.
Tool is an American band that was formed in 1990 in Los Angeles. They had two prior number one albums before the release of Fear Inoculum. This album came 13 years after their last album, considered by many, such as the Guardian Magazine, to be a legacy album. Their musical palate resides within the hard rock and metal genres. They have been nominated for seven Grammys that are in the hard rock and metal categories, with three of them being wins.
The newest album by Tool, Fear Inoculum, tests the patience of its listeners. The original album is divided into seven songs that range from 10 to 16 minutes each. The crescendos, or the parts of the song album that hook the audience, are shoved towards the end of many of the songs.
The first song on the track is “Fear Inoculum,” which entered the Billboard 100 shortly after being released. The song opens with a constant drumming and then it becomes accompanied with guitar riffs before the lyrics start. This is what Classic Rock Magazine refers to as “being part of an intense shared ritual.” This “shared” ritual assertion is also evidenced by the interconnectivity that is expressed within the opening lyrics of the song, “We are one breath, one word, one spark.”
All of these songs are alike in the sense that they are not meant to be sung. The lyrics are few and far between, the earliest that lyrics come into a song being four minutes in. These songs are meant to be admired for their musical composition and tribute to hard rock bands of prominence that preceded them. The masses were drawn to purchase this album because of the rarity of the genre in today’s world and the appeal that it has to a generation of new fans.
photo courtesy of Rollingstone.com