On September 16th, 2003, A Perfect Circle released their sophomore album, Thirteenth Step, the follow-up to their breakthrough 2000 debut, Mer de Noms. Written remotely, at first, while singer Maynard James Keenan was on the road with Tool behind their Lateralus LP, and then during much more collaborative in-studio sessions, the record debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 and eventually went platinum on the backs of three singles, "Weak and Powerless," "The Outsider" and "Blue."
Six months after Thirteenth Step's release, on March 15th, 2004, APC appeared as the musical guests on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno to play the second of those, "The Outsider." According to Keenan's commentary on the band's Amotion DVD, released in November 2004, the song is "sung from the perspective of a person who doesn't understand at all what their friend is going through [when they are depressed and suicidal], what their loved one is going through, and they think that it's more like a sprained ankle. They can just kind of walk it off." Fittingly, considering what an intense song it is, APC's Tonight Show performance was tightly wound and seething, with Keenan commanding the stage from the shadows while his bandmates, including guitarist-songwriter Billy Howerdel and bassist Jeordie White (a.k.a. Marilyn Manson's Twiggy Ramirez) hold it down around him. Watch above.
Below, see Maynard James Keenan go wig-shopping with his APC bandmate Billy Howerdel: