"I felt bad for [Maynard James Keenan]," drummer Danny Carey says in an exclusive interview. "He even told me he was getting death threats from these idiots out there.
"They just have no idea what our work ethic is. These things don’t happen, man. There’s no other record that’s going to sound like this Tool record."
The band also reveal that the delays were due, in part, to unusually high standards when creating the new album – with guitarist Adam Jones stating he lived by the mantra "It’s not good when it’s done, it’s done when it’s good" during the recording process.
"What you hear is what you get, and what you get is what it takes to get it done," adds Carey.
"It’s not an easy process. I was ready to split up and go, ‘Well if you guys can’t commit to this, I’m just going to play with other people'".
"Sometimes I thought we were nearly there," adds bassist Justin Chancellor. "We’d written an album or we had some songs that were cool, and then we’d dump the whole lot and start again. It was devastating."
The full interview is available only in the new issue of Metal Hammer, which is onsale now, and available to buy online (opens in new tab). The issue also includes a Tool mini mag, a Killswitch Engage art print, and a thrash sticker set, plus features on Faith No More, Volbeat, Halestorm and much more.