While it’s certainly easy to become bitter when one of your favorite bands withholds a new album for more than a decade, it’s easy to forgive when you look beyond A Perfect Circle’s surface moves. The band’s mainstays — Maynard James Keenan and Billy Howerdel — both came to the group with a fair share of other projects going on. Howerdel is also the guitarist for Ashes Divide. Keenan is, of course, best known for leading the even more popular (and even more elusive) Tool; he also heads up experimental troupe Puscifer.
Then, of course, there is Keenan’s life outside of music. While fans aren’t often fortunate enough to get a glimpse behind the velvet curtains and into the lives of the few enigmatic Rock stars left (thanks, social media), Keenan’s recent documentary project with magazine/website Revolver has done just that. Despite being remarkably limelight adverse, Keenan gave the publication looks at his biggest non-music hobbies, including Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and managing his Caduceus Cellars vineyard. Throughout the series, Kennan talks openly about the importance of having a life beyond music, if only to find inspiration for songs. If A Perfect Circle’s followers are looking for the positives in the long bouts of time with no new music from the band, they can find solace in knowing Keenan is gathering up plenty of material with which to work.
It seems he and the rest of the band found that material, first and foremost, in our country’s current political climate. Earlier last month, APC released the first single off its forthcoming album. “The Doomed” is as growling, taunting and unsettled as you’d expect, essentially lamenting how the good guys are finishing last these days. Not a whole lot is known about the upcoming album other than the vague promise of a 2018 release. Until then, you can seethe A Perfect Circle when Keenan and the gang (which includes former Smashing Pumpkins guitarist James Iha) roll through town this week.