Rather than posting the newsletter that I had originally planned for March - due to recent circumstances involving the band’s rehearsal space - this morning (fueled by 2 cups of Café du Monde), I hastily penned this somewhat somber substitute. And here’s why: With no one present (save, perhaps, for some tattooed phantoms of prior late night carousing), around midnight on Sunday, March 31, 2013 in the common era (or early Monday morning – April1 in the same era vulgaris) part of the Tool loft caught on fire.
Before continuing with the details as I now know them, I can tell you that the situation could have been MUCH worse had not one of Danny’s friends dropped by that night to do some guitar tracking. When our hero arrived, upon opening the heavily bolted door, he immediately smelled the acrid smoke and saw flames in the corner of the front room. Unable to proceed further, he quickly called the fire department, which arrived shortly on the scene and easily put out the flames. As mentioned previously, if not for the actions of our hero (and of course the firemen), the blaze could have caused far more damage than it did. In fact, it could have been devastating.
However, it is the damage to one item in particular that makes the event actually newsworthy. This item is (was) a hard drive, and contained on it were riffs/jams of new material intended for the middle section of one of the band’s unfinished new songs (the complex ‘epic’ song, of course!). And because these various pieces were so recently conceived and recorded, unlike the rest of the material, they hadn’t yet been transferred to another source. So, if these sections are not retrievable from the damaged machine (and it seems more likely that they won’t be) - unless Adam or Justin have them properly stored on their neural computers – this will be a bit of a set back. (But, in thinking positively, perhaps the new ideas will even be better. Of course, I wouldn’t want to mention that to a band member right now).
Other casualties of the fire, though not nearly as significant as the damaged hard drive, were several of Justin’s bass guitars and his effects pedal board, a taxidermy bird (singed feathers – phew!), assorted spooky curios, and a prized “Hippies Use The Side Entrance” sign that was hanging on the wall. Although some of Danny’s drums also were blemished by heavy soot and charring, at the time of the fire, his two favorite kits were both safely packed aboard slow boats in the south Pacific - one going to Japan and the other to Australia.
So what caused the fire? Although still under investigation, faulty wiring appears to be the most likely culprit at this point (and this after recent renovations to the loft, including, among other improvements, new wiring. Fuck, should have used Angie’s List!). When I was first told about the fire, I thought that it was probably due to the new tiki torches added to the loft’s already strange décor. (Note: Readers might recall a photo of Danny posing by some tiki torches that was taken not long ago. Noticing exotic ferns, etc. in the background, in the post, I said that I wasn’t sure if the photo was taken at the loft (as I had been told) or in Hawaii? Well, as it turns out, one was shot at the loft, with ANOTHER one taken in Hawaii. That’s because they are stills from a commercial that Danny did for a new energy drink. In the advertisement the interior of the loft (complete with prop tiki torches, exotic ferns, and a ‘sand’ carpet) is magically ‘transformed’ (somehow having to do with the energy drink?) into a Hawaiian paradise. Looking forward to seeing this when it runs!
Anyway, hopefully in a day or so I’ll get some photos of the fire damage – including the auxiliary Dry-Erase board (yep, it - and what was contained on it - didn’t escape the flames). Not to worry though, I’m sure the place will soon be returned to its former glory, and I will get another chance to spill the first beer on the new… new black carpet. In the meantime – in case you’re wondering – yes, the vintage Pepsi cooler is just fine (although it’s probably about time to clean out some of the greenish sludge gathered on the bottom). Oh, needless to say, our hero didn’t get any guitar tracking done that night.