It's been five years since Slipknot’s last studio album, the turbulent .5: The Gray Chapter, yet it seems like an eternity. But the end of the tunnel is in sight – the Iowans’ sixth album should finally land sometime this year, according to frontman Corey Taylor.
Since the as-yet-untitled album began to take shape back in 2017, the band have drip-fed us nuggets of tantalising info. Such as they’ve demoed at least new 16 songs for the record, it will feature one of the heaviest numbers they’ve ever written, and the fact that Corey is working with SFX maestro Tom Savini on his new mask. And then, last November, they took everyone by surprise by dropping ferocious new track, All Out Life…
While we’re still in the dark as to specific details, there’s still plenty we do know about Slipknot’s new album. We've decided to round up everything that’s out there – and add in a few things we want from it…
When is Slipknot’s new album coming?
Speaking to Resurrection Fest TV, frontman Corey Taylor revealed that their sixth album is coming mid-2019 – handily coinciding with their massive European festival trek. As new albums are released on Fridays, we could see the Iowan wrecking machine drop Album Six on June 14, the day before they headline Download festival. Or, if Corey is being super-nerdy and precise about things, the album will be released at midday on July 2 – the exact midpoint of 2019.
What is it album about?
According to Clown, the new Slipknot album “breaks down to good v evil, or in this sense, evil v good. It’s about being a human being and experiencing what you have in correlating it to this world. This world is ugly and it’s supposed to be, and it has to be in order for art to lead to grandness and beauty.”
So it’s safe to say we’re not going to be in for an easy ride. Clown is a certified maniac and an artist capable of such danger and violence that his idea of good and evil could be so warped that we have no idea what the shit is going on. Shawn Crahan is a man who punches drums and batters bins for kicks while looking like Pennywise’s evil twin – we’re not sure we want to know what he considers to be bad.
That said, there could be a societal and political edge to the good v evil, something the ’Knot have explored previously in Gematria (The Killing Name) on All Hope Is Gone.
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What will it sound like?
Judging by the Halloween treat of All Out Life, Slipknot are re-finding their roots and looking back at the hyperactive assault we fell in love with at the turn of the century. While All Hope Is Gone and .5: The Gray Chapter in particular were met with criticism from some fans, claiming them to be too light or too similar to Stone Sour, it feels like The ’Knot are veering in the other direction and using a broken mirror to reflect on their past, take stock, and find that inner turmoil once more.
Will it be heavy?
You bet your bottom bollock that it will be. In fact, Corey told Hammer that Slipknot’s “heaviest song” is on the new record. “It’s going to be fucking crazy. People are going to shit their pants when they hear it.”
Our bums are primed and ready for the impact of such heaviness, but how much heavier can Slipknot get than the likes of Eeyore? Earlier in 2018, Corey said that he had 16 songs written and they were “fucking dangerous.”
He also said: “I loved .5: The Gray Chapter, but this album, to me, makes .5 look like nobody’s business. This is Iowa levels of heavy. And I have to go out and tour this shit at my age – I can feel those songs in my back!”
Who doesn’t want to hear that record?
What is the artwork like?
Not a clue. Out of the five previous covers, the band have only appeared on two (the debut and All Hope Is Gone), so could it be time for them to return? Or perhaps they’ll do something cryptic/metal again like the goat from Iowa or the freaky dancer on .5: The Gray Chapter. Our money is on a dead crow.
What is it called?
Judging by recent album titles, it will be four words long and most likely refer to something dark or negative in the lives of Slipknot or the world as a whole. As Clown says, it’s about good vs evil, so the title could refer to something along those lines, maybe even a biblical term… or just something simple like ‘Maggots’, which cuts straight to the core of what Slipknot have always been about, and harks back to the early days of The Nine.
Will there be new masks?
Of course! Every album comes with a new mask, sometimes more than one. Corey has announced that he’s working with Hollywood horror maestro Tom Savini on his new mask, which could mean all the band are getting an overhaul by Savini as well. It’ll be interesting to see if V-Man and Jay are given identities this time instead of sacks stitched to their faces, and just how obscenely long Craig makes his spikes this time. But with five years to prepare, who can tell just how messed up Clown is going to make himself for this one? Sick bags at the ready.
What does Corey Taylor think about it?
Speaking to Metal Hammer, Corey said of their upcoming record: “What if the guys who made Iowa matured? What if the kids who made Iowa grew up? That’s kind of the way we’re looking at it because some of this shit is so heavy – but there’s melody, there’s really cool melancholic melody going on.
“Some of this shit is just so hard and dirty fast. It’s fucking really good. It’s also us at our most ambitious, our most experimental, also us doing what we fucking do best, which is basically when everybody thinks they’ve got us figured out, we just smack them in the face with everything we’ve got.”
Broad brushstrokes, sure, but the words ‘hard’ and ‘fast’ are exactly what we want from Slipknot. The more experimental the better, we say. And if there is the obligatory ballad, that’s no bad thing. After all, who doesn’t like Vermilion Pt. 2?