On the 18th of May, 2001 three things happened. Firstly, I turned 18 years old. Secondly, Pope Jean-Paul II, with whom I happened to share my birthdate, turned 81 years old. And thirdly, I bought a copy of Tool’s 3-day-old magnum opus, Lateralus. There have been very few albums in my life which have challenged my pre-conceptions and engaged my imagination to the point that they fundamentally changed my understanding of what music could be and do and accomplish.
Lateralus was the first of them.
I was lucky enough to attend two shows on the Lateralus tour, and those performances, with their monolithic video screens, mesmerizing light rigs, incredible musicianship, monstrous set pieces, screaming walls of sound, contortionists, acrobats, and laser shows have become, in my mind, the definitive ’10’on the scale against which I judge every other musical performance I attend. So you can imagine my elation when I found out that Tool were coming through Kingston.
I had tickets the same hour I heard the news.