Maynard James Keenan on PUSCIFER: “A lot of stuff that happens with us”

TOOL‘s Maynard James Keenan interview for PUSCIFER‘s new ‘Existential Reckoning’ album. This album recording session starts before the ongoing pandemic.

On October 30th, PUSCIFER celebrates its new album release with “Existential Reckoning: Live at Arcosanti” event. The band also working on this album since February, when Maynard‘s COVID-19 battle ends. He talks about his battle, “I still have a cough. Every other day, I have these coughing fits because my lungs are still damaged at the tips.”

During an interview with Metal Hammer, TOOL’s Maynard James Keenan reviews PUSCIFER’s fourth album “Existential Reckoning”, ongoing pandemic, and more:

“Mat Mitchell was all excited. About four-and-a-half years ago, he had picked up one of the few remaining, functional Fairlights, along with a bunch of other outboard gear and synthesizers. And he started really focusing on the Fairlight, trying to get some sound out of it. So as we were wrapping up the Money Shot tour. He was diving right into putting a folder together of little pieces.

Over ’16, ’17, ’18, I was kind of listening to a little bit, but it wasn’t until about the beginning of ’19 that I went, ‘Okay, I’m going to get in and start picking a few that we can start really digging into.

I normally identify a couple of pieces, and then he’ll come out during harvest. I’ll do some vocals, and we just kind of chip away. We assume we’re going to try to do 10, maybe 14 tracks. So he’ll come out every couple of weeks, or I’ll go out there for a couple of days, to Los Angeles.

At that same time, we have Carina there, so she’s usually listening to what I’m doing, and how I’m reacting to the track, and then her gears start turning on how she’s going to add her piece. It’s kind of a three-way chess match.”

Maynard answered, Existential Reckoning’s Apocalyptical concept:

“A lot of stuff that happens with us, is we’re reacting to what we’re seeing. And we’ve been working with the digital ninja, Meats Meier. He’s incredible with his 3D space and his filming techniques. And I guess the benefit of the shutdown was that there was no way he could have done that video, in a Hazmat suit, around Los Angeles, without a pandemic.

The streets were empty. That was one of those things, you see it, and you go, ‘Ooh! Grab that, because you’re never going to see that again, probably not in our lifetimes’. So he went out and got that footage, immediately.”

He also mentions toilet roll popularity:

“Well yeah, I mean, that’s kind of our icon now, right? There are many little icons that have popped up in this particular year. But tigers are one, toilet paper’s another… there’s a few.”

And social media:

“Well, I feel like social media and the internet have really kind of driven a wedge, in between people. So that’s definitely come up since social media has kind of taken off.”

You can also pre-order PUSCIFER‘s “Existential Reckoning” on here.


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