Fake Tool Vinyl Guide


Updated: March 2017

I have been getting a fair few emails from people asking questions about tool vinyl whether items are fake or not. So I have put together a “Fake Tool Vinyl Guide”. Some of this info I have collected over the years, other stuff and came from Galen, at http://www.collectiveunconscious.org/.

On a side note, I know there are people out there who love tool and want to own anything they can from these guys, but all this stuff below is utter crap. Do not pay money for it, or let anyone you know pay money for it. If you are after rare and interesting recordings from tool there are 100’s of recordings available in different circles on the Internet… All you need is a Bittorrent client, and check out a few sites like:

  • thetradersden.org
  • dimeadozen.org

FAKE Tool Vinyl

Tool ‘Aenima’ Colour Vinyl Reissue LP Gatefold Sleeve

This is probably the most offensive and damaging counterfeit tool vinyl item as so many people are looking for original pressings, and when they end up with one of these it hurts. It says reissue, however there has never been an official reissue.  This comes in yellow or green vinyl most often, however there are also plenty of black vinyl versions. From Ebay: Limited edition reissue, double LP on coloured vinyl (Yellow or Green). Comes in gatefold sleeve with plain white inners.

Stinkfist –  “Eastern European Promo”

Label: “HYA KOH”
This fake / bootleg “promo” copy looks to be like it could, possibly be legit. This has only been on eBay & seems to be sold by one guy from the USA. There is no record of this ‘record’ ever being produced for any reason.

Lateralus – “Rare Blue Vinyl”

A poor, poor counterfeit pressing that offers nothing but a (probable) CD > Vinyl transfer. The actual release of Lateralus by Tool was mixed differently for the vinyl release. This just a sad & poor attempt at making a bootleg.

Lateralus – “Rare Double Vinyl”

This is a different version, obviously, from the blue version because it is “more complete” as it is a “double album”.
Ebay info: This is a mysterious print of Lateralus LP. This was played only one time by me. The tool logo and the title of the record are printed on a sticker on the cover, maybe you could see in the photo. On the vinyl label there are the tool logo, the Lateralus logo and the songs title. I don’t have any other information about this record.

Parabol – “Rare Black Vinyl”

Probably MP3 Sourced. Home-made vinyl pressing. The person or persons who manufactured this have absolutely no idea what they are doing. Side A? Side A would definitely be either the demo’s or something live. Side B has to be various stuff *downloaded* via the Internet in the early 2000’s. All of this stuff is mp3 sources, and freely available on any p2p network…Limewire, Bittorrent etc. The cover has also been taken from a Pink Floyd bootleg.

Salival – “Rare Vinyl”

This tends to surface on eBay & also seems to be available both in the land down under but also in Eastern Europe. Description include comments like “Get this rare MINT LP”, “TOOL – SALIVAL COLOURED DOUBLE LP ”

Album Notes from Blair @ toolband.com:

I’ve received over a dozen e-mails in the past few days about SALIVAL VINYL being sold on ebay. According to the people writing me, these are advertised as being as rare as hen’s teeth (well, as being extremely rare), and can be very pricey (same with the DVD/CD ‘box set’ – those that aren’t even signed by a band member!). For those wondering about the authenticity of the Salival VINYL, I’m fairly certain that these are ALL bootlegs offered for sale by unscrupulous types. As the French might say, this is a travesty. My advice would be to save your hard-earned money, and to keep in mind that I’m not adverse to using an acronym that’s also an anagram (where applicable). But, more about this later. Also, some of those emailing about the questionable Salival vinyl are wanting to know about any possible analogue release for 10,000 Days. To this, I’m sorry to say that I’ve no word yet, but will be sure to post if/when that day comes.

Tool 10,000 days new double LP record coloured Red or Blue

This is a pretty good attempt at looking official, and sales on Ebay are going well because everyone is waiting for the band to make an official vinyl release of the album. But I assure you this is counterfeit. If/When there ever is an official release of 10,000 days on vinyl there will be news of this of the official band website. There has been no such news yet (2017 – maybe it will never come?). Notes from Ebay: New, mint, never played, sealed. This is a limited record: there are only 1000 of it available.

Tool –  Tainted Love Vinyl LP color

Tracks: Calling Dr. Love, Rev 22:20, Passenger, Santa Monica & Orange, Choked, Muhammad My Friend, Divorced, Sober
Someone has taken all of the randomly labeled tool mp3’s that floated around in the Napster era and made a bootleg vinyl from them. There’s a nice Tool font used, and some Pink Floyd-ish cover art. The vinyl itself is blue. Santa Monica, a sublime cover isn’t actually even Maynard or Tool.

Tool  ‘Lollapalooza’ USA 1993 Colour vinyl LP

Tracks: Intolerance, Cold & Ugly, Sober,Swamp Song, Opiate, Bottom, Jerk-Off
A vinyl pressing with source audio from the 1993 Lollapalooza show in Irwindale. The date listed on the auction of the show is: 7/7/1993. However the show was actually in August, not July. The bootlegger has likely used the same source material as the many CD bootlegs floating around that were made from this source: “Tales From The Dark side”, “Sleep Forever”, “Westwood One” “Opium Den” . Ironically if the bootlegger was more resourceful there are plenty of great Sound Board recordings from 93’ Lollapalooza.

Tool Silver Tongue LP

Tracks: Part of me, Hush, Crawl away, Jerkoff, Cold & ugly, Spasm, Wrong way, Kill the revolution
Partly sourced from Mp3 rubbish floating around on p2p networks in the napster era, some of which isn’t even tool (Wrong way).

Tool ‘Lateralus’ Red Vinyl Double LP

The official Lateralus vinyl release took a while to be released to the market, and in the mean time there were a few bootlegs that floated around to fill the gap. These still pop up on eBay from time to time, even though the official release is now easy to come by. I have put a few photos below of auctions I have seen that are not the official release. To see what the official release looks like check out my vinyl guide.

Tool Salival – Red

This one is a bit more recent (2017), and very common. There has never been an official Tool release of Salival on vinyl. The font used is much more recent than the album, which would be pretty weird for starters if you were thinking this is legitimate.

Tool Opiate – Orange Transparent Marbled Vinyl

Pitched as a European import, uses copies of the original labels. Counterfeit.

Tool Ænima 2 × Vinyl LP Album Unofficial Release Gatefold Red

This one is crazy. It’s not even pretending to be official, it says Unofficial in the auction title, yet somehow they want $1450 for it? Crazy right? It is “ULTRA RARE”.

Tool Opiate – Red / Marbled

Looks pretty legitimate because it uses the same label as the original pressing. Counterfeit.

Now on Ebay:

Get items removed from Ebay

If you feel strongly about counterfeit Tool vinyl items on ebay and want to get auctions removed, here is the page on ebay that talks about items like these…it has a link at the bottom that allows you to report fake items….read here.


  1. I just saw it! And it even has the fat lady card inside, quite chuffed… On the down side however I’ve just realised I was sucked into the bootleg salival a few years ago. Got it from rare records in stkilda.. The owner seemed a really genuine guy tho, ohwell all my others are real which i’m thankful for. Appreciate ur help, will be sure to check back here for hints in the future!

  2. hi lolli, if its the limited edition lateralus picture disc, it looks just like my one i bought a cple of years ago, its the real deal, but you can go to, soundstage direct, or amazon.com and get it tommorow for a reasonable price instead of waiting twenty five days in a bidding war, check them out and let me know how you go

  3. Hi jezza,

    Thanks for helping out! 🙂 I’m in the UK so it would probably be easier getting it from a website, or shop, here (cheaper delivery, etc.). The seller does have a shop and it’s a buy it now item. Bidding wars can be crazy – saw a Pearl Jam vinyl I wanted to get for him but it went for too much (in my opinion :P). I didn’t realise there were fake vinyls about and it got me worried. Thanks again for your help and I’ll let you know how I get on.

  4. no dramas lolli, this website is an awsome guide to weed out the bootleggers, ive seen salival vinyl for 150 bucks on a store website, and tool havent brought out salival on vinyl, if i hadnt found this website i would have bought it, so it pays to be careful

  5. I just picked up a copy of Aenima this evening at a small record store in Orange County, California. I’m just curious if any of the official copies of Aenima came in any other colors other than black. The copy I purchased is on clear red vinyl. The catalog number on it is 72445 11087. I’m just curious if it’s a legit copy. It won’t be a huge loss if it’s not because I only payed $36 for it. If anyone knows the answer to this it would be awesome, thanks!

  6. hello, just got a aenima vinyl in the mail. Bought it from ebay.
    The vinyl is black, but there is no picture of bill hicks or the blue man.
    72445-11087 on the vinyl itself and 72445-11087


  7. I recently purchased a Lateralus Picture Disc from ebay. As far as I knew, there were no fake copies of the pic disc. After the fact of me winning the item, the seller said it was a re-issue. I know it wasn’t officially re-issued so the seller was using a cute name for bootleg. I looked at the sellers feedback and see that they already sold a bunch of these over the years and even have another one up now. My question is….is this a bootleg and is there a way to tell a difference between the 2? The one I bought had a picture that the seller took with their phone so the it doesn’t look as good as it should and you can’t really see the spiral background on the pic disc. Someone please help so I can refuse the package and get a refund if it’s indeed a fake. I couldn’t really find any info on fakes of the pic disc version

    Here’s a link to the above mentioned item that I purchased:



  8. Thanks for the reply. The seller told me it’s a re-issue (after I bought) and he is selling the Aenima and 10,000 Days bootlegs so I’m guessing it is. Wish I checked the other auctions he was selling before I purchased. Plus, this same seller has sold tons of this Pic Disc over the years and I don’t see how one single person could have acquired that many. I am so damn sick of bootleggers.

  9. Turns out that the Lateralus pic disc I purchased was INDEED A BOOTLEG. They refunded my money, thankfully, but they are still selling many boots. Sellers name on ebay is “my-vinyl” so you folks may want to avoid that seller if using ebay. Everyone please note that there IS a bootleg Lateralus pic disc floating around for sure. The bootleg version has horrible coloring and the color doesn’t “pop” like the orginal. Also, the nice spiral background is almost non-existent on the bootleg.
    Everyone have a good one

  10. I have two Lateralus promo picture discs and one has way better colors and sharper letterprinting than the other. Also the “3D” effect/spiral is much better visible. However the one that is, in my opinion, the “bootleg”, has a (faint) matrix and the “real” one has not. At least, I can’t find it. Anyone knows exactly how to tell real from counterfeit on this one?

  11. Hi! I was looking for Lateralus vinyl on ebay and came across this auction, can anyone help me and tell me if it is original?


    I also wrote to the seller as this site reccomend and he answered me back that It is the current press on USA Sublime with hologram sleeve.

    I can’t find anything on the web about this press. Can I be sure it’s the official one??

    Thanks for helping

  12. Hi Melanie…the sticker on the front and the cover reassure me that the copy is legit…not a bootleg.

  13. Hi Guys,

    I’ve recently bought my first two ‘Tool’ Vinyls: ‘Undertow’ and ‘Lateralus’. I got both off E-Bay. Something didn’t seem kosher about the packaging of ‘Lateralus’, so a little hunting on google showed me this site. ‘Undertow’ is the legit 2004 re-issue, but ‘Lateralus’ is a bootleg.

    What I have isn’t in the bootleg list on this site, though. Mine is a double blue vinyl. The front and back of the outer sleeve are obviously scans of the CD version. The inner sleeves are plain white paper. The vinyl labels are pictures of the front cover.

    Whilst I have absolutely no doubt that it is a bootleg, it’s bloody good. The two records are 180g (This my first bootleg, so i’m guessing, but I can’t imagine many copies using heavyweight vinyl). But, most importantly, the sound is fantastic. No background hiss. No crackles or pops. Also, I have a feeling this might have been bootlegged from the legit vinyl and not ripped from the CD version, because there is more detail here than what is on my CD version.

    If you can’t get the legit version, i’d recommend this bootleg. I paid 20 for mine.

    Have you heard of this bootleg before, Admin?

  14. So, like these other people, I’m resorting to just asking about a particular vinyl which I think may be a fake, though I’ve not found any conclusive evidence. Hell, I didn’t even know Tool LP counterfeiting was a big deal until I tried to find pressing info about the LP…

    Here’s the eBay link:

  15. Can anyone comment on the sound quality of the $36 aenima bootleg at amoeba records?? I bought one today but won’t be able to listen to it for a week.

  16. Hi Admin,

    I’ve got a question about Tool’s Lateralus vinyl that I’m trying to resell. It is still in the original plastic wrap, in mint condition. I am trying to determine its value without unwrapping it. I would like to know if it is a legit signed copy.

    I’ve checkout out the postings on this site and a few other articles to know what the “real” album should look like, and everything matches, but I am wondering if the catalog numbers on the back could identify if it is signed or not.

    There are two slightly different numbers on the back.
    The number on the plastic wrap, a white sticker with a barcode reads: 6-14223-11601-3

    The number that is printed directly on the back of the album case reads: 61422-3116-1 LP

    If the only answer is to open it, I can do that, but would it greatly diminish the value of this vinyl?

    I really appreciate any advice you can give.

  17. i bought the salival lp at amobea in L.A. this summer…. it’s a fake…so u know. and i found 10000 days and lateralus in London Camden…fake also

  18. Thank you for your fantastic site!!

    I just have one question that I would love answered.
    Did Tool EVER cover Comfortably numb by Pink Floyd??
    And, if so, was it ever released on any of their vinyls?

    I’m certain this is not true but I would just like to deliver a “I told you so” to a few people who believe it to be otherwise 🙂


  19. Hi VJ,

    The version of Comfortably numb you will find floating around on file sharing sites is not tool, even though it is often labeled as such. It’s actually an early demo of the song done by Gilmour. So if you see it on vinyl, then that vinyl is a bootleg. The “Parabol – Limited edition colored vinyl” which is a bootleg we have listed above has the song on it, which should give you an idea of what a crap bootleg it is.

  20. Yet ANOTHER shady thing is going on at ebay these days. People are selling Aenima with “Original?” in the title. The same seller has done it twice so far. He plays dumb to the fact that he doesn’t know if it’s official or a bootleg. Even makes up a story of when he bought it. At least most the sellers on ebay list it as color vinyl (not saying it’s ok to sell em, just not misleading). Here’s an example from the seller “terrie_keenan”


    Just by the way he listed his bootleg with the shady description, he duped someone into paying $190 for the bootleg that sells for $40-$60. Most people should be tipped off to it being the bootleg by the lack of sticker and lack of ring wear or anything that a sealed copy of a record that old should have. I know most of us already are aware that things like this go on but I just like to keep bringing these things up to hopefully help newer collectors that may not know all they should yet.

    Ebay irritates the hell outta me since they do NOTHING about any bootlegs. I have reported numerous items (sometimes numerous times on the same item if I got time to kill at work), and nothing ever happens. Ebay just doesn’t give a damn as long as they are making their fees. I do encourage all of you to report any bootleg you see (CD, vinyl, whatever) as maybe the more different people they see reporting, the more chance they actually do something.

    Sorry for this mile long diatribe but I just wish something would happen to these sellers. Lots of new collectors are getting screwed…yes they should educate themselves, but still these bootleg sellers get away with whatever. Even local record store and chain record stores carry many bootlegs. Many stores call them “fan club” releases. Ok, I gotta shut up now, hopefully I helped at least one new collector or vinyl lover out there. Take care everybody!

  21. By the way Admin, I forgot to add something….

    I mentioned that I bought a Lateralus picture disc on ebay that I ended up thinking was fake since the seller called it a reissue after I bought. Well, I got it and gave it a quick look and it looked really bad, horrible coloring and what not. I returned right away to the seller. I also noticed that the same seller sells numerous other bootlegs. The coloring is just no where near as vibrant as the real one. They were on ebay left and right a few months back but now there’s just one real one up. Here’s a link to a completed bootleg copy from the same seller that I returned one to, she has sold 20+ of these:


    Anyways, just letting you know so you can maybe add it to the fake vinyl list.

  22. Aled, that looks like the bootleg one I just mentioned in the comments above you. The colors on it are wrong and not vivid like they should be. Also, the spiral background is barely noticeable, in fact, it looks like it’s not even there. Here’s a link to a real one:


    Hope that helps, and sorry for responding to so many comments Admin….maybe it’s saving you time though.

  23. Thanks. I see your point about colour difference, though to complicate matters the description of the item I linked seems to have a legit catalogue number and description. Could it just be a bad picture?

    Confuzzled :s

  24. Usually bootleg picture discs use the original catalog number as well as they are trying to make their crappy bootlegs look legit. The coloring is off and I don’t think it’s just because of the picture. I actually bought the same one from another seller and got to see it up close and it looks way off from the original. Lucky I got a refund. If I were you, I would avoid the one you linked all together.

  25. Damn- I thought I was on to a bargain there! Many thanks for the input, i’ll find a legit copy one day!

  26. About Tools Lateralus vinyl…I’m trying to sell a copy that is still in the original plastic wrap, in mint condition.
    How can you tell it’s a signed copy without opening it?
    It has the sticker on the front that signifies it’s not a bootleg.

    Ive checkout out the postings on this site and a few other articles to know what the real album should look like, and everything matches, but I am wondering if the catalog numbers on the back could identify if it is signed or not?
    There are two slightly different numbers on the back.
    The number on the plastic wrap, a white sticker with a barcode reads: 6-14223-11601-3
    The number that is printed directly on the back of the album case reads: 61422-3116-1 LP

    If the only answer is to open it, I can do that, but would it greatly diminish the value of this vinyl?

  27. Hi Andrea, There is no difference between the original and signed copies. The band just signed some of the regular albums and sold them to toolarmy members. However, to sign that would have had to open the vinyl. So if you vinyl is still sealed, it is not signed.

  28. @ryan

    That looks like the legit copy to me. The main thing is how vibrant the colors are and the fact that the spiral background shows up nicely on the front and back. I bought one that I had to return for being fake and the colors were dark and ugly (just poor quality overall) and the spiral background just barely showed up. My advice to you is to contact the seller and ask him if the item pictured is the actual item for sale. The shady seller I bought from posted a pic of the real deal and sent the poor quality overseas bootleg. Also, $75 is pretty high on the price. You can now find OG originals for $40 and lower due to the influx of the bootlegs. The unfortunate part is many people are buying up the boots as they don’t know any better and don’t do the research on it. Hope this helped you in some way.

    Take care dude, all the best!

  29. Hi all,
    I reported on ebay.com ebay.de ebay.co.uk and on allegro.pl over a dozen of tool’s fakes vinyls 🙂 also I sent emails to some sellers with info what I did 😀 f**k the thieves!
    Be aware and don’t buy vinyls ripped from mp3 or cd.
    Greetings from Poland 🙂

  30. I dont see what the problem is. Some collectors like me, LOVE bootlegs. And with the likes of 10,000 days, Tool dont give a fuck about supplying their fans with a vinyl release so someone out there has delivered. SUPPLY AND DEMAND.
    As for Salival, you can get the real one if you want to pay $400-$500 or more or get a bootleg of it for under $100. From what I can tell most of the people selling Bootlegs are not trying to sell them as originals, its clear to any one with half a brain they are bootlegs.
    Perhaps you think TOOL are on the poverty line and are being denied proper payment. In actual fact the only people being hurt in any way would be the Record Company, and they can get f**cked as far as I’m concerned.
    And why is it that its big bands like Tool and Metallica and Led Zep that kick up a fuss. Did you know there are some bands that WELCOME bootlegs, now that is liberating.
    Tool fans with your high and mighty stance on bootlegs are a bunch of whining idiots.
    Some of the bootlegs out there are actually VERY GOOD quality. And as with other bands bootlegs can be very collectable. I hope that is the case with Tool bootlegs and you all rue the day when instead of buying them and watching your purchase go up in value over time, you all got on your soap boxes because Tool were being denied “pennies” .
    The more bootlegs the better I say. I like bootlegs and I resent you lot here denying me what I want to buy. If I KNOW its a bootleg and I WANT to buy it, why shouldnt I beable to?. If you dont want to buy it, then that is fine just dont try and stop me from buying them.

  31. The guy above me is a dumbass. Sorry. He would pay good money for someone to just transfer a digital copy from the CD over to a vinyl record? Dumb….. ass. Anyway, I just filed a complaint with Amazon to have them take down some vinyl Salival records. Here’s the link


    If you check there and it’s still for sale (got about 6-8 sellers right now) then go ahead and complain again 🙂

  32. I realize this site is for TOOL vinyl, but I was hoping someone could point me in the right direction. Trust me, I looked and looked via the web…and I cannot find out if the following is real or not. I’ve got the original APC Thirteenth Step, but I’m seeing another one with a nude fold out. Unfortunately, there’s not a site like this for APC…so please forgive for the post. I won’t do it again if you prefer I shouldn’t. As TOOL fans, I thought I’d take a chance.

    eBay: http://www.ebay.com/itm/PERFECT-CIRCLE-TOOL-LP-ULTRA-RARE-ORIGINAL-PRESS-NUDE-FOLD-OUT-COVER-2003-NM-/230751534942?pt=Music_on_Vinyl&hash=item35b9dcff5e

    popsike: http://www.popsike.com/A-PERFECT-CIRCLE-TOOL-LP-ULTRA-RARE-ORIGINAL-PRESS-NUDE-FOLD-OUT-COVER-2003-NM/230709400820.html

    discogs: nothing

  33. @Eric – I didn’t notice your APC question till now. Don’t buy into that “nude cover” fiasco. All covers are exactly the same for Thirteenth Step.

    This started a few years back with a particular eBay seller who made this up. I can’t remember his user ID but I did call him out on the BS (in a nice manner) and he sent profanity laced responses that were just childish and he dodged all my questions. He actually sold some at an absurd price of $150. Sucks that those people believed his tall tale and didn’t do any research.

    Over the years a few other sellers have mimicked that BS story. In their defense, they may have just looked at PopSike or CollectorsFrenzy and thought the different cover thing was legit. Kinda funny that the seller that currently has one on eBay refuses to accept questions via the eBay messaging system, that’s a red flag of a shady seller IMO. All the jackets feature the same art. The women is nude is every single copy but her private areas are covered by her hair. Compare your jacket to the one in the auction and you will notice that it’s exactly the same. Steer clear of that auction as it’s just the same pressing you can still get at record stores.

    I think it’s a good thing you brought this up as it really hasn’t been mentioned online.

  34. I’ve also been duped into buying Aenima and Salival off ebay from sellers who knew they were selling bootlegs. Avoid the seller “ihunt007” at all costs!

← Older Comments Newer Comments →

Leave a Reply