Sound — 10
This record delivers both a blastingly heavy guitar riff section on such tracks as the single "Judith" and the pounding heartbeat of the drums throughout shows us what a "superband" can be made of. Quiet, soppy and yet extrordinarily powerful number such as "Three Libras" show us the veriety of the group outstandingly. Maynard's vocal skills display more here than he ever has with tool, crying with more emotion than we thought such a great man could feel.
Lyrics — 10
Lyrically, this album boasts meloncholy yet somtimes quite uplifting material. Repedative in some parts, yet constantly vivid and thoguht provoking. Billy has written some fantastic songs and, coupled with Maynard's vocal talents, create a fantastic blend of spiteful ballads and ripping anger-filled hate songs.
Overall Impression — 10
In hindsight with their more recent album, "Thirteenth step" this was a definate groundbreaker for the music industry. The band seem a lot more eager to make themselves known with this record, which is much more uplifting and aggressive than the toned-down second album. With such fantastic tracks as the afore-mentioned single "Judith" and the powerful "Magdalena" this album is a must-have for all tool fans, aswell as anyone just getting into the genre. It will change your entire opinion on this kind of arty and quizzical music forever. I cannot say I hate anything about this album as it blends a perfect mix of songs the entire way through. All instruments sound great and all timings seem perfectly thought through. There is nothing here that one could call sloppy or un-prepared. A work of art. I recommend it to all, if you have never heard it. Where have you been for the last three years?!?! if you thought Thirteeth step was something different, this earlier cd will blow your mind!