Tool's Maynard James Keenan Opens Up About Coronavirus Battle & After-Effects: 'I Survived It, But It Wasn't Pretty'

Maynard James Keenan
Ian West/PA Images via Getty Images

Maynard James Keenan wins the Icon award at the Metal Hammer Golden Gods Awards 2018 held at indigo at The O2 in London on June 11, 2018.

Tool's Maynard James Keenan is opening up about the chilling after-effects of surviving COVID-19.

While chatting with AZ Central about his upcoming Puscifer album Existential Reckoning, the 56-year-old rocker revealed that he contracted coronavirus back in February and is still recovering eight months later. "I'm still dealing with the residual effects," he explained, "But it was ugly. I survived it, but it wasn't pretty. So I definitely had to deal with that."

"I kind of didn't want to run around screaming it. But it's real, and there's after-effects," he continued. "I had to go through some major medications to undo the residual effects. Still coughing. There's still lung damage."

"I still have the cough," he revealed. "Every other day, I have these coughing fits because my lungs are still damaged at the tips. And I just got over the inflammation that was going on with my wrist and hands. I had an autoimmune attack on my system in the form of, like, a rheumatoid arthritis. Basically, from what I understand, it attacks weird spots and it's random. So that's what I got. That was my prize."

Keenan also delved into the idea of personal freedom and mask-wearing. "It's just an absurdity. We wear seatbelts. We don't smoke in trains, planes or taxis anymore, or even restaurants. There's reasons for those things," he said of those who reject masks or use the concept as a vehicle to project hate. "I don't know. I feel like there's this twist on the idea of personal freedom where somehow freedom is you being able to walk into anybody's house and take a dump on their meal or shout ugly things at their grandma. That's not what freedom is. Freedom is the ability to pursue your lifestyle, pursue what you want to do for your family, for your future, what education you want to get. And with that freedom comes a responsibility to look out for yourself, for your neighbor, for your family, for everybody. So there are some compromises that come along with freedom. I'm not sure why that's so difficult to grasp."