Tool’s fans have expressed their confusion and anger following the deluxe, signed vinyl release of the band’s 2019 record Fear Inoculum. Not because of the record itself, but because of the slightly eye-watering price: $810.
The release is only currently available at live shows, with a wider release planned for later in the spring. Fans who have been catching the prog-metal titans on their current tour shared photographs of the merch stand alongside the price label, often captioned with disbelief.
Over on the /r/vinyl subreddit, user cannonfunk wrote: “Tool just announced they’re selling autographed copies of their new album at their concerts… and yes, that says $810.”
“Seems like a great way to let your fans know that you have absolutely no respect for them, whatsoever,” replied one commenter.
Yeah I want Fear Inoculum on vinyl but not for $800
— bigbadburch (@bigbadburch) February 21, 2022
In Tool’s fan subreddit, one of the most popular posts right now is a text post titled “The Tool experience is a joke.” In the post, user Ohhellnowhatsupdawg pointed to the price of the vinyl release as the final straw for their dissatisfaction with being a fan of Tool.
“Music unavailable on streaming for a decade. No vinyl releases worth a damn since Aenima. Tool Army [fanclub] $50 annually. $500 VIP. Regular tickets $100+ in most cases. Overpriced t-shirts and posters. Ignored scalping. And now, a $810 autographed [Fear Inoculum] vinyl kicking off the wider release,” they wrote.
Tool’s Fear Inoculum is getting a vinyl release! There’s just one problem… pic.twitter.com/qaoCnQ7yGW
— Metal Patches Vinyl (@MtlPatchesVinyl) February 21, 2022
The release’s format presumably contributes to its price, alongside its signed and limited nature. The Fear Inoculum Ultra Deluxe LP release consists of five 180g disks, etched on one side with audio, on the other with artwork. It also comes with a large full-colour artbook.
However, for many fans, this is simply not enough to justify a price tag of $810 for a single vinyl release. Also contributing to the anger is the fact that up until now, Fear Inoculum hasn’t been pressed on wax at all. So eager vinyl-collecting fans who have waited since 2019 for an LP release (and longer for LP reissues of the band’s back-catalogue) are faced with a rather bank-breaking option to complete their Tool discography.
$810?! For a signed copy of the deluxe vinyl for Fear Inoculum?! I love Tool, but eat your heart out Kanye West. The fuck?
— G.R.S. Jackson (@GRSJacksonReal) February 21, 2022
Others are also not keen on the prospect of getting up to replace the disk on the turntable four times across a single album listen. “Come on, this would be such a pain in the ass to listen to all the way through,” wrote one commenter on Reddit.
It’s worth noting that the $810 asking price is only for the signed Ultra Deluxe edition, with a standard edition set to be available via traditional means (not just merch stands) later in the spring.