Knowing that Danny would be visiting me in the desert for a couple of days, I scratched out a list of questions for him to answer about how things were progressing with the new material and about some other Tool projects that are currently in the works. You know, things that he (and the other band members) never get tired of being asked about. After picking him up at the airport, with the carmometer showing 122 degrees!, I suddenly remembered that when I first suggested that he come and hang at my new place for a while, the selling point was that it would be a good chance for him to relax while kicking back in some Tiki-themed bar and trying his skills at video poker. In keeping with a new policy of moderation, we could also hunt for some obscure esoteric books on our obscure esoteric books list - something that we hadn’t done for quite a while. So, with that in mind, I tossed my page of questions into the trash.
However, the next day while having lunch at “Bootleggers” – a ‘Sinatra’s Way’ Italian restaurant on the Vegas south strip – I casually asked about the status of the new album (Namely, how the writing/arranging sessions were going?) – to which he replied, “Good!” While enjoying his “House Specialty” lasagna to the sounds of an excellent pianist (and master harpist Mariano Gonzalez!), he added that they were very close to knocking out another tune, and that as soon as it was finished, they would send a recording of it to Maynard. When I asked if this was the song with the REALLY unique time signatures, he told me that they had already finished the music on that one. Okay, admittedly, not exactly stop the press news, but what can I say, other than that they are still grinding away on new material four days a week, and would be back at it later in the week (once Danny returned from the Las Vegas glitz, Justin from celebrating his wedding anniversary and Shelee’s birthday in palm-swaying Hawaii, and Adam hunting for glossy treasures at Comic-Com 2016 in San Diego).
The other question that I asked Danny concerned the fate of the broken vintage Pepsi machine from the loft – whether or not it had been repaired? Now, here was something that brought a quick response: Yes, he was determined to have it fixed, with or without the ‘original’ parts. Finally, what about the so-called “curveball”, to which he replied that he still wasn’t sure when it would be made available for public consumption, but that “It turned out dang good, though!”
So, what didn’t I ask him? Well, a few things, with the first being: Excluding vocals, segues, etc., what percentage of the new album material was complete? I also didn’t ask him if there were plans for any guest musicians to perform on the new record, or if they had discussed any cover artwork concepts? Finally, I didn’t ask him if there would be anything that was shockingly different from the signature Tool sound on the new album? Sorry, maybe next time – when there might be answers that I can post. For now, keep in mind the old adage: “No news is good news.” It was time to head to the long bar of the dimly lit “Golden Tiki” for a tropical libation (and glass of ice water!).
I almost forgot one last item. On second, why bother to bring it up. Oh, what the hell. Danny did mention the possibility of something happening after the record was released, but that this was definitely NOT a sure thing at this point. Since this involves something that may or may not even happen, I won’t (if fact, can’t) expand on it – only to say that: if it does happen, now that would be stop the press news!
To see Lara’s photo of Danny’s ‘Four Kings’, check out the NEWS on his website (www.dannycarey.com), and/or in the PHOTO ALBUM SECTION on www.toolarmy.com.