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Shots From The Road: Tool in Los Angeles

A tantalizing Valentine's Day well spent amidst a towering wall of sound and a visual spectacle.

tool tour, fear inoculum tour, tool band.
Photograph by Ekaterina Gorbacheva

Text, Photos by Ekaterina Gorbacheva ( at the Arena in Los Angeles, CA on February 14, 2024:

This Valentine's Day, the Arena in Los Angeles was host to a night of transcendental songcraft, possible only from a band of the caliber of Tool. The progressive masterminds were allowing Fear Inoculum to live once more on a North American Tour in partnership with Massachusetts doom outfit Elder. As was the case on predecessor tours, minds were blown and Tool further strengthened their ever-growing legacy in ways that extend beyond their own discography — wondrous stage design, limited edition tour posters from celebrated artists, and stupendous openers that whet the appetite for a multisensory sitting.

Slow burning doom on arena speakers is an experience in and of itself, and when you bring the boundless tracks of Elder to the forefront, attendees get treated to something to quite unique. The band's shape-shifting Sanctuary, an 11-minute standout, sports vibrance and talent among the best in the contemporary doom sphere, a talent further expanded upon by Merged in Dreams and Halcyon. Head banging riffs and unfolding sonic layers filled the room and made it tremble.

elder band, elder tour, doom metal.
Photograph by Ekaterina Gorbacheva

Tool are intentional about their opener selections and from the moment the tour was announced, we knew Elder would be an ideal fit. That much was true upon seeing them tear through their set. Unfortunate are those who missed them.

The buzz grew as the headliner's instrument switchover commenced with chatter everywhere and many storming towards their seats in anticipation. Lights dimmed and Fear Inoculum's opening chimes began to ring. Projections and grand displays filled the backdrop, providing an enticing sight to the moving instrumentation that Maynard James Keenan led in signature fashion. A roaring Jambi raged on following the soothing title track that commenced the special occasion.

Concentrated and mysterious behind aviator shades, Adam Jones excelled with Gibson Flying V in hand as the prowess of Danny Carey radiated in mastery. Justin Chancellor's rumbling bass lines sent chills down our spines through the wondrous Descending and The Grudge. So much soul, so much effervescent brilliance was present at the career-spanning set at arena.

tool tour, fear inoculum tour, tool band.
Photograph by Ekaterina Gorbacheva

Drum solo included, Carey's signature performance of Chocolate Chip Trip is a mind-blowing feat that remains an audiovisual splendor no matter how many times you see it. One's mind is put at ease with a soothing Culling Voices performance that follows, possible through Keenan's attention to harmony and emotional intensity.

A roaring applause came on as Stinkfist hit the stage, prompting many to raise fists and sign along to its punchy chorus. The arena lit up with enthusiasm throughout and a gracious Tool walked off stage in appreciation as the song came to a close. Night 1 was done and joy filled the room as ABBA's Dancing Queen serenaded the thousands exiting the venue.

The tour has since concluded, but the memories across this run will live forever for Tool prove once again that their creative spark shines as bright as ever. Whether it be the Fear Inoculum tracks or any of the band's staples across the revered discography, the musicianship present on the stage is bar none among the best in the metal arena. Spiral out and lose yourself to sights from the performances below.

Elder Photo Gallery

Tool Photo Gallery


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