After recording an Ep followed by 2 critically acclaimed Lp’s, Tool went on hiatus for five years. During this time the members went out and stretched their talents with other bands. After teasing their drooling fans with the false start of Salival, it seemed the boys were back in action and ready to bludgeon us with another record. Although Lateralus is quite remarkable from start to finish, it definitely earmarked their progression. Their signature swampy drones had been polished away. Their polyrhythmic style had become more complex. This shifted their punkish don’t give a shit timing to a more matured math prog-rock style similar to King Crimson. The tongue and cheek humor which kept the original albums from seeming too high minded or pretentious was stripped away. Instead, it was replaced with more Occult and Crowley references. This album definitely showed a transcendence of their style and musicianship. However, it’s also a gravestone for the Gaping Lotus Experience, and I for one kinda miss that little guy.