Tool at the TD Garden

Photos and Review by Jeff Palmucci

Galleries: Tool, Steel Beans

Attending a Tool concert is an experience that transcends a mere musical performance, blending auditory and visual arts into a sensory journey. The recent show at TD Garden was no exception, showcasing the band’s unyielding commitment to delivering a truly immersive experience.

The evening commenced with the opening act, Steel Beans, consisting Jeremy Debardi’s one man band. I gave him a listen on Spotify before the show, and really liked the “Molotov Cocktail Lounge” track. However, even though it was interesting watching him play the guitar and drums at the same time, it didn’t really work musically. His songs really need a road band.

As Tool took the stage, the audience was instantly captivated. The setlist was a meticulously curated blend of their new and classic hits, opening with the hypnotic “Third Eye” followed by “Fear Inoculum.” The band’s performance was impeccable, demonstrating their mastery over their instruments and the complex, polyrhythmic layers of their music. Songs like “The Pot” and “Rosetta Stoned” were particularly standout, resonating with the audience’s palpable energy.

A key highlight of the night was the visual spectacle. Tool is known for their use of stunning visuals, and this concert was no exception. The laser show was nothing short of mesmerizing, with beams of light cutting through the darkness, creating an otherworldly atmosphere that perfectly complemented the band’s sound. The video effects on the rear of the stage were equally impressive, albeit somewhat disturbing. These visuals, often abstract and surreal, added an intense, almost transcendental dimension to the concert experience.

The band’s decision to prohibit photos from the audience was noticeable with signs posted on the chairs and security people enforcing the policy. Maynard’s stated reason was to encourage the audience to fully immerse themselves in the experience, undistracted by the glare of smartphone screens. However, I think it also just pisses him off. Leave your phones in your pockets guys.

In conclusion, the Tool concert at TD Garden was an extraordinary event. The band’s performance was as tight and powerful as ever, complemented by a visually stunning show that enhanced the overall experience. For fans of Tool, and indeed for anyone with an appreciation for music that pushes boundaries, this concert was a reminder of why Tool remains a formidable force in the world of rock


Steel Beans