Justin Chancellor reveals Tool got “frustrated” working on ‘Fear Inoculum’: “At one point we kind of threw it all away”

Tool bassist Justin Chancellor has revealed that the band got frustrated while working on their 2019 album ‘Fear Inoculum’, and nearly threw out the whole record – see what he had to say below.

In a new chat with NME‘s Liberty Dunworth, Chancellor spoke of the band’s upcoming UK tour, their long hiatuses between albums and potential new material. He also spoke about the band’s acclaimed 2019 record ‘Fear Inoculum’, which came 13 years after 2006’s ‘10,000 Years’.

When asked about the band’s new aversion for long waits between records, Chancellor revealed that the 13 year wait between ‘10,000 Years’ and ‘Fear Inoculum’ wasn’t done on purpose: “It was never an intention of ours to do it that way! As time went on it just took longer and longer, and I think that stems from the pressure of trying to excel and trying to outdo yourself.”

He continued: “There’s always a danger of looking back and comparing ourselves to what we’ve done before, so there’s a certain amount of stuff we had to work through to get to the place where we could create something new and pure and of its own right. I think that’s the reason that the process started to take longer and longer.

Justin Chancellor and Danny Carey of Tool accept Best Metal Performance for '7empest' onstage during the 62nd Annual GRAMMY Awards
Justin Chancellor and Danny Carey of Tool accept Best Metal Performance for ‘7empest’ onstage during the 62nd Annual GRAMMY Awards. CREDIT: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Chancellor then explained that frustrations while working on the 2019 album led to the band taking breaks during its crafting process’: “The last time [working on ‘Fear Inoculum’], we were in and out of ideas a lot. We wrote a whole bunch of stuff, and then at one point we kind of threw it all away. We got a little frustrated a few times, and people needed to go off and do other things just to kind of get the breeze in their hair and get a fresh perspective. When you get stuck, sometimes you need to walk away.”

Elsewhere during his chat, Chancellor opened up about the band wanted to write more frequently now than in the past: “We’re just getting old, so it’s the pressure of time. Danny has just turned 63, so if we take 13 more years we’ll be touring when we’re over 70! Now there’s more of a necessity to get something cooking a little faster if we want to keep going strong”.


Chancellor and the rest of Tool are set to kick off a tour in the UK and Europe today (May 30), which will see them perform in Birmingham, Manchester, London, Paris and more until late June. Tickets to their UK shows are now on sale. You can find tickets to all of Tool’s upcoming tour dates here.