Rock fans have a tendency to come and go, but some of them have genuine staying power. One such band that has been a consistent performer since the early 1990s is Tool. They haven’t released a ton of studio albums, with only five of them existing to date. That said, they have been solid performers on the touring circuit and they have devoted fans that love them as much today as they did when they first started. The band released their first demo shortly after forming at the end of 1990. While it was originally intended for radio stations, the band members were so pleased with it that they eventually started selling copies of the demo to fans directly. It would be 1993 before they released their first full-length album, but it was one that was definitely worth the wait. To this day, they are a band that still doesn’t produce a great deal of music in the form of tons of studio albums, yet the work they do turn out is always considered to be top notch.
5. Ænima (1996)
This was their second studio album, one that was released on both CD and LP. It eventually made it to number two on the charts in the United States and was also certified triple platinum. Worldwide, the album has sold approximately four million copies to date. It is a rather long album, at over 77 minutes in length. It also incorporates both metal and progressive rock. It was released on the Zoo label in 1996 and was recorded throughout both that and the previous year. The band predominantly used two different studios to record the majority of the songs, with one of them being The Hook in Hollywood, California. The other studio was Oceanway, located in the same general vicinity.
4. 10,000 Days (2006)
The band’s fourth studio album incorporated more progressive metal, this time with songs recorded at several different studios. As a matter of fact, the majority of recording was done in Burbank, California with additional songs being recorded at two different studios in Hollywood. This time around, the label involved was Volcano Records. The band also had a different producer on this album. Up until now, their producer had consistently been David Bottrill. For this album, the band produced the record themselves, giving them ownership over the music that they were turning out and putting them squirrely in charge of what went on the record and what didn’t. Of course, there was still a fair amount of give and take associated with the record label, but it was something that the band had desperately wanted to do. They felt that they would be better able to showcase their sound under these types of circumstances, and it was something that they were insistent on doing, even though it took a certain amount of time for them to get to the point where they could actually put that desire into action.
3. Lateralus (2001)
This was the band’s third studio album. It’s interesting to note that it was produced by the band themselves, along with producer David Bottrill. Like many of their other albums, it’s rather long and runs for just over 78 minutes. There are many different genres of music involved on this particular album, including both progressive metal and progressive rock along with a few songs that incorporate art rock. It marks a bit of a different sound for the band, at least in some cases. In others, fans have the opportunity to listen to the same sound that they fell in love with from the very first studio album. In short, there is material for a wider audience on this particular album than in some of the band’s earlier works. Released on the Volcano Record label, the album hit number one on the Billboard 200 chart within one week of being released. Around that same time, they sold 552,200 copies. The album was recorded at various studios around the state of California and quickly became one of the most influential albums that the band ever recorded. That still stands true to this day.
2. Undertow (1993)
This was the band’s very first studio album, one that involves some songs that they had previously written for a demo album but then ultimately decided not to include. It features a lot of heavy metal and has largely been credited with more or less saving that particular genre of music in its entirety. In addition, a number of individuals in the music industry have looked to this album when providing credit for the ability of later acts that had a similar sound to come onto the scene successfully. So far, the album has sold an astonishing three million copies, steadfastly remaining one of the most successful heavy metal albums to date.
1. Fear Inoculum (2019)
In addition to being among the band’s most highly accredited albums, this is also their fifth and most recent studio album. It was released on the 30th of August, 2019. It had been recorded earlier the year before, between March 2018 and January of 2019. Released as a partnership between Volcano Records, RCA and Tool, the album runs just over 79 minutes in length and incorporates genres of music such as progressive metal, progressive rock and alternative rock. Once again, the band provides music that has served them well over the years while still incorporating something new in order to bring new fans in. The album was recorded at three different studios, including The Loft, United Recording and Hence Recording, all located in Los Angeles.