It’s been three years since Slipknot’s last album .5: The Gray Chapter, but the Iowan wrecking machine have kept us satiated with the release of new live movie Day Of The Gusano. Filmed at the band’s first-ever show in Mexico City, headlining Knotfest, the historical performance was captured on multiple cameras and directed by Slipknot’s purveyor of darkness Shawn Crahan aka Clown.
We caught up with Clown to talk about their Mexican experience and what the future holds for The Knot.
Why did it take Slipknot so long to play Mexico?
“It’s finances, it’s the right time, it’s wondering about that society. It’s very difficult for kids there to pay for tickets. They have to work months and months and months. So it’s just not easy to pick up and go to Mexico City and do a show.”
Why did you film this show in particular, though?
“We’ve heard from day one in our career how crazy Mexican people go off at a show, how unified they are. You say ‘jump’ and they all jump, and you can feel it. So we thought, ‘Why not make this show a Knotfest?’ And we documented it, because it was a really special thing.”
What was your experience in Mexico City?
“I came in about a month or so early to do press and I hung out with all the promoters – they took me to all the food places. I ate all the authentic stuff. I ate crickets, I ate ants, larvae… I will eat anything you want. I love all that stuff.”
Were you concerned about going to Mexico, given it can be dangerous?
“I’m into going anywhere, man. I’ve been told not to go into places, gotten there and they’ve become my favourite places. So I’m very blessed with rock’n’roll pushing me into situations that feel scary or I’m a little insecure about or I don’t know. Rock’n’roll is not politics – I’d never want to be in politics because it’s not my thing, but who doesn’t like rock’n’roll? The police like rock’n’roll. The army like rock’n’roll. Religious people like rock’n’roll. You go into these territories you’re scared of, you’re usually pretty much welcomed with open arms because everybody loves music.”
There are some seriously obsessed fans in the film. Is meeting them still inspiring for you, even at this stage?
“It is, man. It makes me rethink a lot of things. I look at it now, at my age, as being my family, my culture. So if the world continues to be fucked up, I wanna be with my family.”
Where are we at with the new Slipknot album?
“The Gray Chapter was pretty much the final learning velocity of our career. We had to replace a bass player, we had to replace a drummer – one of them was walking the earth, the other was buried in the earth. It was a very hard time. People were telling us, ‘How is the band gonna write, Joey and Paul are gone?’ Fuck you. We made a fucking awesome album that we love. And we’re gonna continue to do that. I actually have a date that some of us are gonna get together in a studio and get things going for the next one…”
“Myself, Jim [Root, guitar] and Jay [Weinberg, drums] went to LA and organised everything we had written out on the road. We wrote 50 fucking ideas. We spent two weeks organising all that, and also adding some stuff that was written a year ago. We have over 27 ideas ready to go – seven or eight of them are full songs. These songs can change, they can be written over, nothing is in stone. But it’s great that we have concrete ideas to begin with. So the future has never been sweeter for Slipknot music. I don’t know what Corey’s got in mind, because he will bring his own songs, too, but we’re just writing music and getting ideas and moods and soundscapes – getting it all fucking together.”
What about the art side of it, you’re usually very involved with that process. Any ideas forming?
“I’m studying new forms of art to introduce to the maggots. Because not only will all the old maggots need to be inspired, but what about that whole new generation that we will grab when we come back out? They need to say, ‘Hey, you guys have had Slipknot your whole lives, but this new art is made for us.’ New logos, new videos, new masks, new outfits, new songs, new show. That’s what’s great about Slipknot.”
Day Of The Gusano is out now via Roadrunner.