This Week In Metal (27/10/14 - 2/11/14)

Corey Taylor has been busy this week, yammering on to the world's media about a vast range of subjects including his new mask, Gene Simmons' assertion that 'rock is dead' ("Are you kidding me?! he told radio station Rock 105.5, "Screw that, man! Rock ain't dead"), the death of Paul Gray ("a dense numbness kinda descended on us," he told Larry King), the new Slipknot album, the new Stone Sour covers album Meanwhile In Burbank ("Without giving too much away, that's where Roy lives" is his explanation for the uninspiring title), his own mental health problems and suicide attempts ("There's always light at the end of the tunnel," he said in a video for the You Rock Foundation, "There's always a way out") and also the fact that he very nearly ended up as the vocalist in Anthrax.

As Corey told Talk Is Jericho, he was invited for an acoustic jam with Scott Ian and Frank Bello after short-lived singer Dan Nelson was fired in 2009. The three men then went for dinner, where the Anthrax chaps confessed that they didn’t know what to do about their latest in a long line of frontman fiascos (although what they eventually did – get Joey Belladonna back – was by far the best and most obvious solution). “Someone – I don’t remember who,” insists Taylor, “jokingly said ‘Why don’t you sing for us?’ We all laughed. Then it got real quiet and we were like, ‘Well why don’t I?’ I was ready to fly to Chicago and start writing with them.” Evidently this hook-up was only derailed by Taylor’s label, who pointed out that he already had enough on his plate with Slipknot and Stone Sour. “Charlie Benante and Scott had sent me a bunch of music and I was writing lyrics. A lot of stuff ended up on Worship Music. Not my lyrics – but when I heard it I was like, ‘I recognise that, I recognise that.’” So, he recognised the songs that Anthrax were demoing for their new album on their new album…?

Slayer have this week given away tickets to their LA show next month to some bloke called Jake who shot a spoof of some American car advert claiming he was selling his 1997 Ford Escort to raise money to buy tickets to the concert. Jake was able to mount such a convincing parody because he reportedly works for the Merit/Andrew advertising agency as a production coordinator – although why anyone who works for an ad agency would need to flog his wheels to pay for gig tickets hasn’t yet been addressed, unless it’s some sort of contrived viral publicity stunt (surely not!).

In other non-music-related Slayer news (is there any other kind these days?), Kerry King has opened up his Psychotic Exotics reptile house to cameras, showing off his beloved collection of snakes which he dubbed “my own little slice of Hell.” However, the foursome have been so busy gigging and recording the still-untitled follow-up to 2009’s World Painted Blood that Kerry hasn’t had as much time as he’d like to spend with his scaly menagerie. “Up until this year, I did all of it,” he comments of his odd hobby. “But this year, I just told my dude what I wanted to be bred and I did touring and recording.” As well as revealing that he has a ‘snake-breeding dude’, this week Kerry has also been sharing his vision of Slayer’s future, suggesting the thrash titans are looking forward to being around for their 40th anniversary in 2023. Which, to be fair, is at best only two Slayer albums away…

In other Big Four news, Megadeth’s highest profile fan was revealed this week: Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe, who prepared for his role in the new fantasy horror film Horns – where he plays a man searching for his girlfriend’s killer, who grows a pair of horns with paranormal powers – by listening to Megadeth’s 1992 classic Sweating Bullets, “Specifically for the lines ‘Hello me, it’s me again/You can subdue me but never tame me’ and ‘A dark black past is my most valued possession’,” he explained to Gigwise. “It’s an insane song and it sounds like a psychopath talking to himself – and that was very helpful.” Worse than that Harry, it sounds like Dave Mustaine talking to himself! Chilling.

Chris Chantler

Chris has been writing about heavy metal since 2000, specialising in true/cult/epic/power/trad/NWOBHM and doom metal at now-defunct extreme music magazine Terrorizer. Since joining the Metal Hammer famileh in 2010 he developed a parallel career in kids' TV, winning a Writer's Guild of Great Britain Award for BBC1 series Little Howard's Big Question as well as writing episodes of Danger Mouse, Horrible Histories, Dennis & Gnasher Unleashed and The Furchester Hotel. His hobbies include drumming (slowly), exploring ancient woodland and watching ancient sitcoms.