Maynard James Keenan: “Pink Floyd’s Animals changed everything”

Maynard James Keenan in glasses, smiling
(Image credit: Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Tool and A Perfect Circle’s Maynard James Keenan has admitted that Pink Floyd were a slow-burner for him. He’s previously revealed he plays the band’s music to the grapes in his vineyard, but in a new interview with San Antonio Current, he's revealed the moment it finally clicked.

“Pink Floyd took me a minute as a kid, because I was growing up in rural Michigan and was used to pop songs and whatnot. You hear Another Brick In The Wall, and that’s a catchy radio tune,” he told journalist Mike McMahan.

“When I actually sat down with headphones that I borrowed from my uncle and listened to Animals, it changed everything for me. I had to have the right space. If I had put that on at any time before that point, it wouldn’t have made any sense to me.

“Back at that point, I couldn’t tell the difference between AC/DC and Sex Pistols. There’s guitars, there’s a guy screaming, everything’s in 4/4. I didn’t know the difference until someone pointed it out. ‘Oh, these guys got arrested and these guys didn’t.’”

Keenan is currently touring North America with his other band Puscifer, in support of their 2020 album, Existential Reckoning.

Puscifer North American 2022 tour dates

Oct 22: San Antonio Tech Port Center & Arena, TX
Oct 25: Houston 713 Music Hall, TX
Oct 26: Ft. Worth Will Rogers Memorial Auditorium, TX
Oct 28: New Orleans Mahalia Jackson Theater, LA
Oct 29: Baton Rouge River Center Theatre, LA
Oct 31: Nashville Ryman Auditorium, TN
Nov 01: Charlotte Ovens Auditorium, NC
Nov 03: Norfolk Chrysler Hall, VA
Nov 04: Washington Warner Theatre, DC
Nov 05: Atlantic City Sound Waves at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, NJ
Nov 07: Montreal MTelus, QC
Nov 08: Toronto Queen Elizabeth Theatre, ON
Nov 10: Cincinnati The Andrew J. Brady Music Center, OH
Nov 11: Louisville Louisville Palace, KY
Nov 12: Indianapolis Murat Theatre at Old National Centre, IN
Nov 13: Madison The Orpheum Theater, WI
Nov 15: Grand Rapids DeVos Performance Hall, MI
Nov 17: St. Louis The Factory, MO
Nov 18: Kansas City The Midland Theatre, MO
Nov 19: Tulsa Theater, OK
Nov 22: Prescott Yavapai College Performing Arts Center, AZ

Tickets are on sale now (opens in new tab)

Natasha Scharf
Deputy Editor, Prog

Contributing to Prog since the very first issue, writer and broadcaster Natasha Scharf was the magazine’s News Editor before she took up her current role of Deputy Editor, and has interviewed some of the best-known acts in the progressive music world from ELP, Yes and Marillion to Nightwish, Dream Theater and TesseracT. Starting young, she set up her first music fanzine in the late 80s and became a regular contributor to local newspapers and magazines over the next decade. The 00s would see her running the dark music magazine, Meltdown, as well as contributing to Metal Hammer, Classic Rock, Terrorizer and Artrocker. Author of music subculture books The Art Of Gothic and Worldwide Gothic, she’s since written album sleeve notes for Cherry Red, and also co-wrote Tarja Turunen’s memoirs, Singing In My Blood. Beyond the written word, Natasha has spent several decades as a club DJ, spinning tunes at aftershow parties for Metallica, Motörhead and Nine Inch Nails. She’s currently the only member of the Prog team to have appeared on the magazine’s cover.