Don't be fooled, The Perfect Circle isn't a side project, it's not the beginning or end of anything, it's not a political movement or religion. The Perfect Circle may simply be that - the perfect circle. The Los Angeles based band was formed toward the end of the 90's by an eclectic group of freethinking individuals.
Comprised of singer Maynard James Keenan from Tool, Billy Howerdel on guitar, Paz Lenchantin playing bass and violin, Troy van Leeuwen on guitar and John Freese on drums, A Perfect Circle has broken all boundaries of conventional rock and roll. The band has attracted an audience of primarily introspective and intellectual rock fans who were willing to listen to something new from names they were familiar with. A Perfect Circle's songs can be melancholy and even depressing yet, like front man Keenan's main band Tool, they have found a lot of success commercially and critically.
Anticipation of the debut project grew in the late 90's under false rumors that Maynard had left his band Tool in search of something new. The band's first show in August of 1999 at Los Angeles' Viper Club, where they played for a charity benefit, was a huge success. The following spring A Perfect Circle released their first album 'Mer De Norms' which is French for 'Sea of Names'.
Howerdel, who has written for Nine Inch Nails and Smashing Pumpkins, created a surreal set of tracks, which Tool fans and new fans alike quickly and gratefully adopted. The album entered the Billboard chart at number four, setting a new record for the highest-ever debut entry for a new band. Keenan returned to Tool to record their hit album 'Lateralus' in 2001 and put A Perfect Circle on hold until further notice.
It wasn't long before the group was back together in the studio working on their next release. After the success of the first album fans heavily anticipated the upcoming project. In 2003, on Virgin Records, the band released their second album, 'Thirteenth Step'. Replacing Paz Lenchantin with former Marilyn Manson bassist Jeordie White, the band picked up where they left off after their debut album. 'Thirteenth Step' can't be put in a box creatively or musically, that's what makes this band so unique. What do you find in A Perfect Circle? Exactly what one would expect - a collective of veteran musicians who's sum collectively is not less than the sum of its parts.