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    TOOL supported by ELDER-23RD January 2024 – BRIDGESTONE ARENA, NASHVILLE (US)

    Photos and review by Kim Cilluffo

     

    I love being in Nashville because of the diversity of music that always fills the atmosphere. This night was no different as Tool and the opener, Elder, filled the streets and stadium as the masses poured in.  I am honored to say this was my second time shooting Tool at Bridgestone Arena. I always joke that shooting Tool is kind of like playing Where’s Waldo because of how challenging it is to photograph them. I found some   humor at this show because I did find Waldo in the crowd! LOL. This is not your typical metal show where there’s crowd surfing and mosh pits. The floor was filled with chairs for concertgoers to sit and enjoy what was about to be presented to them, with a big reminder taped to the chair in front of them that no photography or cell phones were allowed during the show. I saw them escort someone out for trying to take a video. I love this policy because it brings back the old days before you had to watch a concert through a sea of screens and lights. It forces you to be in the moment and enjoy your surroundings again without the distractions of modern technology.

    ELDER is no stranger to the stage. Formed in the mid-2000s, the American four-piece rock band from Massachusetts, Elder has released six full-length albums since 2006 and multiple demos and EPs. Through the years, Elder has continuously reinvented their sounds, earning them the honor of being known as one of the most unique sounds in the underground community. Elder has also won Album of the Decade and a #5 spot on Rolling Stone 20 Best Metal Albums.

    But don’t try to find them in their hometown anymore because they are now based in Germany, where Elder recorded and mixed their sixth full-length album, “Innate Passage,” in 2022 at Cloud’s Hill Studio in Hamburg, Germany.

    Where you can find Elder online:

    Behold the Elder (official band website)

    Elder on Facebook

    Elder on Bandcamp

    Purchase their latest album:

    US version: armageddonshop.bigcartel.com
    EU version: stickman-records.com

    Members

    Nick DiSalvo – vocals, guitar

    Jack Donovan – bass

    Mike Risberg – guitar, keyboards

    Georg Edert – drums

    Setlist

    Sanctuary

    Merged in Dreams – Ne Plus Ultra

    Halcyon

     

    TOOL

    As the photographers were being escorted to the pit area, you could sense the excitement in the arena. Those of us who have been to a tool performance in the past know exactly what I am talking about. This is not going to be your typical adrenalin rush from mosh pits and crowd surfing because there is none of that here. The excitement starts forming in your system as soon as you see the stage because you know it will be a sensory overload with the unorthodox stages and video artistic displays that are about to start. Nashville had the pleasure of Tool bringing out guitarist and bluegrass musician Billy Strings to play on one of their songs. Billy Strings album “Home” won the Grammy Award for Best Bluegrass Album in 2021.

    Tool has been around since the 90’s and has been a constant symbol in the music industry, winning numerous Grammy Awards, MTV Video Music Awards, Metal Hammer Golden Gods Awards, Billboard Music Awards, and iHeartRadio Music Awards with their five studio albums, a box set, and their EP.

     

    You will not see the fancy, brightly lit members of Tool here. The show is more about the artistic creative side of music and visual effects. Maynard is typically the Silhouetted figure in the background on the riser next to the drummer, Danny Carey. Very rarely will you see much light on him.

    I found an interesting comment from the band’s live video editor, Breckinridge Haggerty, that explains a bit more about the reason for the lighting at the shows: “A lot of the songs are a personal journey for him, and he has a hard time with the glare of the lights when he’s trying to reproduce these emotions for the audience. He needs a bit of personal space, and he feels more comfortable in the shadows.”

    Halfway through the performance, there is an intermission. With everyone having a seat and not having to fight for their space on the floor again, many people took this opportunity to grab a few quick pictures, use the restrooms, and grab another refreshment. To start the second half, Carey started by playing on a giant gong as people made their way back to their seats. The kaleidoscope effects during the drum solo reminded me of something you would see in the 70s and was amazing.

    Even though pictures were not allowed, Maynard decided for the last song, “Schism,” the audience could use their phones, but only if they kept the lights off on the back because it was so distracting to the band. Just like that, the masses were transported back to the future, and there was a sea of phones recording every moment of the last song. It was a real treat for the fans to be able to do this. As the last song played, the confetti fell and covered the audience on the main floor. I’m not going to ruin the surprise within the confetti, but you’re gonna want to explore it if you get the chance and look for the hidden treasures.

    Official website

    Tool discography at Discogs

    Tool setlist

    Third Eye

    Fear Inoculum

    Forty Six & 2

    Rosetta Stoned

    Pneuma

    Intolerance

    Descending

    The Grudge

    Chocolate Chip Trip

    Flood

    Invincible

    Schism

    Tool Band Members

     

    Tool has taken a few breaks to work on other projects and bands, such as Pusifer, Perfect Circle, and Primus. On top of the music, Maynard is also the creator and winemaker for his award-winning Caduceus Cellars & Merkin Vineyards.

    Tool is currently working on their sixth studio album but has no set date for a release. They have plans on getting into the studio again in 2024. For now, go check out their last album, “Fear Inoculum.” If you will be around the Nashville area on April 10th, grab your ticket for a 60th birthday Bash for Maynard. At FirstBank Amphitheater, he will be on tour again with Primus, Puscifer, and a Perfect Circle. You not going to want to miss this show!

     

    Upcoming Tour Dates

    United States

    • 2/3/24 Oklahoma City, OK Paycom Center
    • 1/30/24 Corpus Christi, TX American Bank Center Arena
    • 1/31/24 Austin, TX Moody Center ATX
    • 2/2/24 Dallas, TX American Airlines Center
    • 2/5/24 Denver, CO Ball Arena
    • 2/7/24 El Paso, TX Don Haskins Center
    • 2/9/24 Phoenix, AZ Footprint Center
    • 2/10/24 Phoenix, AZ Footprint Center
    • 2/12/24 Fresno, CA Save Mart Center
    • 2/14/24 Los Angeles, CA Crypto.com Arena
    • 2/15/24 Los Angeles, CA Crypto.com Arena
    • 2/17/24 Ontario, CA Toyota Arena-CA
    • 2/18/24 Las Vegas, NV T-Mobile Arena

    International

    • 5/25/24 Hannover, DE ZAG Arena
    • 5/27/24 Amsterdam, NL Ziggo Dome
    • 5/30/24 Birmingham, GB Resorts World Arena
    • 6/1/24 Manchester, GB AO Arena
    • 6/3/24 London, GB The O2
    • 6/5/24 Paris, 75, FR ACCOR ARENA PRESTATION
    • 6/8/24 Berlin, DE Parkbühne Wuhlheide
    • 6/11/24 Krakow, PL TAURON Arena Kraków
    • 6/15/24 Firenze, IT Visarno Arena – Firenze Rocks
    • 6/18/24 Cologne, DE LANXESS arena
    • 6/20/24 Dessel, BE Festivalpark Stenehei Graspop Metal Meeting 2024
    • 6/25/24 Johanneshov, SE Tele2 Arena

    6/27/24 Oslo, NO Tons of Rock, Ekeberg Dagspass

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