Tool Detail Album-Delaying Lawsuit, 'Experimental' Writing Path and New Material

Adam Jones finally talks new songs, says "there's a lot of stuff in 7/4."

Ultimate Guitar

Tool guitarist Adam Jones gave a detailed update on the current state of affairs, going through the multi-million lawsuit delaying the new album, as well as the record itself, finally sharing some info regarding the material.

During a recent Metal Hammer interview, the legal matter was the first topic. "I'd be happy to talk you through it," Adam started. "Basically, a long time ago, the band paid my best friend to do some artwork for shirts, albums and advertising - we've hired many, many artists over the years.

"And then he decided to sue us for one fifth of the money we've ever made. It was just ridiculous! But here's the point: we had insurance in case we ever got sued or got in these situations. And now these insurance companies have all tried backing out.

"To me, that does not feel right. I honestly think it's like if you buy auto insurance and you're in an accident, then you go to the insurance company and they say, 'Well you drive an SUV and we don't really consider that an auto, so we're not covering you.' Then you try to argue with them and then they go, 'Well, we're suing you.'"

Agreeing about the obvious negative impact of the whole process, Jones added, "Well, seven years later... here we are. We have a lot of stuff going on. There's stress. There's four different guys with personal things going on and it can be a struggle to write music together. But this time it has been really draining and put a lot of pressure on us. We got insurance for peace of mind. And they totally turned it around on us. I just feel like we've been completely abandoned and it's been totally unnecessary."

Taking a turn towards new material, Adam detailed the "experimental, selfish" path the band's been taking, giving some specific info at last. "We're always on an experimental path," he said. "We never think about what worked on the last record or what's good on the radio right now. It's a selfish process, we just go in there with some riffs. We experiment and the riffs start to take a different path and over time, this riff from last week might go really well with this riff from two years ago.

"We piece stuff together, almost like a film soundtrack, you know? But I'll tell you this - there’s a lot of stuff in 7/4. Breaking up 7 can sound like an even number to the listener even though it's an odd number, that's really exciting. 'Rosetta Stoned' had some elements of that where we had a middle break and the end rhythm of 7 against 5. It kinda opens up a whole can of worms! There's some really light stuff going on but there's also a lot of heavy stuff in there too."

Praising the interviewer for doing his homework, Jones shared a determined stance regarding Tool music in general. "I don't want to just get it out and worry about the next record, then look back and go, 'Why did I do that? It's a piece of crap.' I want to sleep well at night, it's my legacy, you know?

"Some day, I'm gonna croak and I wanna look back on what I did and go, 'I worked really hard, took the time and had integrity.' I know our fans are frustrated and obviously want to hear new music. You gotta look at that in a good way and think, 'Wow - they really like us and they want more!' To be honest, you can't beat that feeling at all," he concluded.

27 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I'm glad that they got this out in the open, as a Tool fan I feel less frustrated now that I know about what had been going down. It's a real bummer what a bitch money can be, everyone is suing everyone.
    Lots of people were esceptical about wether the whole lawsuit thing was real or not. The other day I was reading an interview from 2001 and Adam did mention it. He said it was hard to make Lateralus with all the stress and what not. They have gone through that before, let's hope this isn't any different.
    'Well you drive an SUV and we don't really consider that an auto, so we're not covering you.' Isn't that what those companies actually do... a LOT of times?
    The worst are the medical insurances companies in the US I've been told, cause sometimes it actually feels like they are actively trying to kill you instead of just trying to **** you in the arse.
    The worst are the ones that try and kill you THEN f*ck you in the arse. That's just insulting.
    Whatever horror stories you may have heard are all true. It's so bad that if I were to ever, say, get in a car crash, I'd rather bleed to death at the scene than survive & have my whole family & I get ****ed every which way for decades.
    I think the artwork he is referring to is Aenima. I think it was Cam de leon who did Aenima, and now he is suing them. Whatever the case, that cover isn't worth one fifth of their earnings, no cover ever is worth a fifth of a bands earnings. That's just greedy bullshit.
    There's got to be more depth than that... Maybe he was the one who convinced them to have really trippy artwork at all and focus on the visuals for their stage shows... Remember their first video was just them in a white room with jizz foaming from their mouth... and their early gigs were very grungy.
    I agree that there must be more to it than that but honestly, the artistic direction that Tool have taken is purely the result of their shared influences (in terms of art rather than music). The earlier stuff was a little grungier and straightforward but I think it's just the band's natural development instead of any person/s input.
    That is such a damn shame. Some freaking people. What a sad, pathetic piece of shit, to drag them into that crap, and demand that kind of money. Fucking parasite. If I were in Tool, I'd anonymously post the dude's name and address online somewhere, and see what some crazed Tool fans are capable of.
    One album released in thirteen years... I still love my Tool records and all the shows I went to, but I have the strongest feeling that they've lost all their relevancy... Like seeing a punk band of sixty year old men sing about the Reagan administration. I don't think I'm excited for their album anymore... It was 2010 that they were "writing new material" - now, I just think that the ship sailed without them....
    someone should find this ******* artist and the insurance companies who are suing them and "convince" them to drop the lawsuit.
    I have a feeling a "Ticks and Leeches" 2 might be on the next record when it comes out.
    Even though I want to understand the whole situation, eight years its really a long time and its killing me slowly.
    All of these stories that they tell to the media like when they got in an accident on a scooter or the April Fool's joke that Maynard was quitting music because he found Jesus really make me skeptical of what they say. How much of what they say is meant just to mess with us? I'm not going to believe this story until I see more evidence backing it.
    How many t-shirts and things do you see without it being Alex Gray..I'm telling you guys this is gonna be one hell of a prank!
    again. tool has had sooo many backup story's on why the album has been delayed. does eveyone here remember "the album is done. just joking!" this band loves leading on fans. tomorrow there going to say " tool just joking about law suite album is almost done."
    That "album is done. just joking" bullshit wasn't their fault. It was blatantly misquoted and hyped up by irresponsible "journalists" who knew exactly what they were doing: Lying for hits on their websites. Once the full quote was revealed, in context, it was obvious that he was being extremely sarcastic when he made the comment, and anyone there to hear it in person would be straight up retarded to have taken it seriously.
    These insurance companies are such hypocrites. Saying that the band is too indulgent or selfish, just to make a little money and even worse, delaying the songwriting of one of the most forward-thinking bands today.