REVIEW BY DAVID TAYLOR and PHOTOS BY ROBERT A CHADWICK
Saturday, March 12 marked the return of Tool to Omaha, their first time in the city since September 2002, a much awaited return. 10,000 people strong came to CHI Health Center in downtown Omaha, Nebraska. Nice to have a concert on a Saturday night.
The Acid Helps from Los Angeles opened up the show. Featuring Tool guitar tech, Tim Dawson, on lead vocals and guitar, they have a sound that is an amalgamation of hardcore punk and grunge/stoner rock. It’s just a band full of weirdos, respectfully. Backed with a couple televisions showing the pulpiest archival footage from movies from the 60s and 70s, I enjoyed the vibe they were creating to warm up the crowd. Not sure if the crowd of Tool fans were into them completely, but I was into the chaotic energy they were conveying.
Finally, it was Tool’s turn to hit the stage. I must note that they prohibit any cell phone photography and videography, so take that as you will (I was fine with it). What can I say more that has not been said about Tool. They guys are master musicians. Artists, if you will. From the production design to the musicianship to singer Maynard James Keenan’s interpretive dancing, this band just doesn’t go out to perform for performance’s sake. The vibes were They want you to experience it to its full extent. I say this with the utmost respect: this was a Tool fan’s show. Their setlist included a couple of their hit singles, “The Pot” and from their latest album, Fear Inoculum, “Fear Inoculum” and “Pneuma”, as well as four other songs from that album. Which is great because they love with they have been cooking for over ten years. Danny Carey continues to be probably the best drummer in the game, on a technical level that is out of this world. Maynard James Keenan has a voice that carries through the arena. Tool creates a vibe unlike any artist, period. It is what has helped them have this longevity for over thirty years. Highly recommend to see Tool once in life.