The sold out Theatre for the Performing Arts at Planet Hollywood welcomed 7,000 fans to see Tool Friday, July 16, 2010. Tickets went on sale within thirty days of the show and were gone within minutes. Although I have always loved Tool, a performance I saw from Perfect Circle in 1999 turned me off to seeing Maynard or Tool for many years. After much persuasion by several friends that had seen Tool over the years, I was quite excited to see Tool for my first time.
Prior to the show, a group of us were having drinks at the Halo bar in front of the Theatre. As the showtime was fast approaching, we finished our drinks and went looking for the end of the line. We followed the line of Tool shirts all the way around the mall, nearly to the parking garage. I was astounded! It was obvious the Planet Hollywood event staff was not prepared to handle the 7,000 fans, as the parking garage was completely full and the entrance line wrapped all the way around half of the mall.
Being Vegas natives, when you and thousands of other people are trying to get in the same place, you make a deal with the doorman. It paid off that we got in without an hour wait, but we ended up waiting that long for the show to begin, since they delayed the show until everyone was in the venue. I could only imaging the pandemonium that would ensue if Tool started their show while half the ticket holders are still waiting to get in. Planet Hollywood made the right decision to delay the show, but let’s make sure we are prepared next time, huh.
Tool opened the stage loud, powerful, and vivid with one of my favorites, Third Eye. With just one song, I was already amazed with the colorful visuals, Maynard’s insect like dancing, Danny Carey’s relentless drumming, Adam Jones’ technical guitar, and Justin Chancellor’s deep driving bass. They all played so well together and off each other, the next song, Jambi sounded almost like a rock opera; each part more intricate and creative than the next.
Tool continued through an amazing song selection, bleeding one into another, the musical and visual onslaught was non-stop. (-)Ions, Stinkfist, Vicarious, Eon Blue Apocalypse, The Patient, Intolerance, Schism, and Forty-Six & 2. Applause and screams filled the theatre, as we all payed respect for the extraordinary performance we had just seen. Tool came out for an encore, with opening band Rajas’ drummer joining Carey creating this booming drum masterpiece on Lateralus. To wrap it all up, Tool closed with all lights flashing and an epic version of Ænema.
Tool’s music was so full, it filled the theatre and reached each soul deep and emotionally. The combination of the music you felt within combined with their visuals, is an incredible experience. Tool’s visual elements ranged from moving screens, to projectors, to lasers, to clips of their unique videos and lifeforms, all of which were completely created/inspired by Alex Grey. Whether you are a fan of Tool or not, the visuals alone are a sight worth seeing. This was a one of a kind performance that I was lucky enough to share with 7,000 other fans.
Originally published on Stardust Fallout 11 August 2010