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Undertow

From Academic Kids

For the common noun "undertow", see rip current.

Template:Album infobox

Undertow, Progressive Metal band Tool's first full-length album, released in 1993, brought Tool into the spotlight, along with their crushing performance at Lollapalooza 1993, an annual rock and metal festival.

Consisting of 10 songs, this album deals with issues with relationships, issues with childhood, issues with drugs, and even incorporates some optimism with the song "4", a song seemingly about reaching a higher consciousness/letting go of oneself through sexual intercourse.

Although frontman Maynard James Keenan doesn't use a wide variety of pitches, he certainly uses a lot of tones. His tones range from angry to hopeful to possessed, all within the span of one song. Danny Carey's drumming is especially noticeable in the 5+ minute anger-fest entitled "Crawl Away" about a relationship falling apart; one person fading, or "crawling" away, and the other trying desperately to hold it together.

Guitarist Adam Jones and bassist Paul d'Amour work well together on the song "Prison Sex" to create a strangely melodic and peaceful atmosphere amidst a barrage of disturbing vocals from lead singer Keenan.

The atmosphere of the album is topped off by depictions of large naked women and the band members posing with pins in the sides of their heads in the liner notes. This proved controversial in North America, and resulted in the album being removed from the shelves of most large retail chains. Some versions of the album replaced the cover image with a large barcode and included a note from the band.

Track listing

  1. Intolerance (4:53)
  2. Prison Sex (4:56)
  3. Sober (5:05)
  4. Bottom (7:13)
  5. Crawl Away (5:29)
  6. Swamp Song (5:31)
  7. Undertow (5:21)
  8. 4 (6:02)
  9. Flood (7:45)

Tracks 10 through 67 are each one second of silence. Track 68 is two seconds of silence.

Track 69 is a hidden track featuring the song Disgustipated (15:47).

Charting singles

1993  Undertow       The Billboard 200               No. 50
1993  Undertow       Heatseekers                     No. 1
1993  Sober          Mainstream Rock Tracks          No. 13
1994  Prison Sex     Mainstream Rock Tracks          No. 32
1994  Sober          Mainstream Rock Tracks          No. 23

Personnel

Template:Toolbandit:Undertow pl:Undertow

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