01-“The Package”

02-“Weak and Powerless”

03-“The Noose”



06-“A Stranger”

07-“The Outsider”


09-“The Nurse Who Loved Me”





Billy Howerdel – Guitar

Maynard James Keenan – Vocals

Jeordie Orsborne White (alias Twiggy Ramirez) – Bass

James Iha – Guitar

Josh Freese – Drums


A PERFECT CIRCLE: "Thirteenth Step"          a perfect circle        Virgin Records

review  by Francesco  Casale  ____    


Finally the second album of this “perfect circle” headed by Billy Howerdel (guitar) and Maynard James Keenan (vocals), already Tool’s vocalist.

From the first track we can notice all the differences of this work, this Thirteenth Step, is just the case to say it, is a step ahead, more dynamic, more melodic then the first album (Mar der Noms , 2001) and surely more able to create in listener’s mind a sort of  sonourous landscapes.

We start with “The Package”, an obsessive track, where melodic guitars are mixed together with a tribal drums rhythm, a perfect base for one of the best performances of  Keenan. “Vanishing” and “A Stranger”, two tracks where we can re-discover some Pink floyd’s atmospheres, strange and onirical, where the listener floats in a sort of melodic dream.

In “The Noose” there is a little variation in the line up, in fact Danny Lohner (Nine Inch Nails), appears as a guitarist and “additional programmer”, he is recently released from a collaboration with Maynard for the original soundtrack of “Underworld” (an american fanta-horror).

Then we can find also more powerful tracks, like “Pet” and “The Outsider”, where distorted guitars and a good drum rhythm are mixed with the melodic voice of Maynard and with some session where the volume decrease until u can listen only his voice and an effected guitar.

A Nurse Who Loved Me” deserves a special analysis, in fact is the only song not written from the group... particular lyrics and a dreaming melody create a quite song that seems to be not in line with the album, but the references of all the medicinals in this lyrics lead the listener to a complete confusion throught a negation of the tension.

The video single track is “Weak and Powerless”.In this obsessive song Maynard mantains a “voice line” with a single tonality, but explodes in a melodic scream when he repeats “...weak and powerless over you...”, in conclusion a nice song but not the best.

Packaging Analysis:

The artwork is directed by Maynard, and we can see the same style of the first album. The dominant color is green and yellow, with some strange glowing around the same girl fo the video.

This colour choose   reminds the artistic and melodical line of the album, calm and quite but with strange hidden tension
Rating: 9/10  
Francesco Casale    
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