Sound — 11
UPDATE: Happy Fool's Day!
To get the technicalities out of the way first, Tool's new album "Obliquus Externus" was leaked by a group of Russian hackers earlier this morning, who stole the record from Maynard James Keenan's personal Google Drive and made it available for online streaming only for a brief period of time before being taken down.
What seemed like a simple 66-minute file turned out to be the most sublime piece of music anyone had a privilege to listen to; there is no doubt here, this is indeed the new Tool album. Off to the review now.
All we can say is... wow... We remain absolutely stunned and shell-shocked from this glorious musical experience.
We are not sure there are appropriate words for describing this album, which shines with an aura we have not yet encountered. We are talking sounds not yet heard in music as we know it - revolutionary drums, stellar bass and guitar, and vocals that strike right down to the essence of your soul.
For 66 minutes, the listener will stand still. After that, nothing will be the same. Your life will change.
Lyrics — 11
And then there are the vocals. What Maynard captured in that recording studio is the very essence of humanity, the core elements of being human molded into words and vocal melodies that pierce through your heart like an unstoppable divine force. And indeed, for a brief moment during the album's climax, the listener is left with a feeling that God himself had spoken to him. Maynard is by all means God's tool, brought to this world to show you the way. Heed his words.
Overall Impression — 11
Every avid music listener knows the struggle of searching for that perfect piece, the one to encompass the human nature and express the essence of being human in a way that nothing can be added or left out without crushing a perfect structure of notes, emotions and sounds. This is what "Obliquus Externus" does - it will anger you, make you cry, smile, love, hate and then leave you with an altered state of mind. It will change your life. 10+, highest rating ever.