Corey Taylor reflects on his best and worst Slipknot masks to wear

(Image credit: Getty)

Corey Taylor has spoken about what he considers to be the easiest and hardest Slipknot masks to wear.

He made the comments during a live Q&A session hosted by Kerrang, with the vocalist answering a range of questions about his career.

And when asked about the masks he wears onstage, Taylor says: “They were all fucking horrible. The hardest was my original with the dreads. Anything that’s full-headed – there’s just no getting out of it.

“At least when you’ve got some kind of a half-mask with buckles, you don’t feel like you’re singing in a portaloo. But when it’s closed, you just put this big rubber hood on and there’s just no getting out of it. 

“So that one and the Iowa one, because they were basically variations of the same thing. Those were the worst. The Iowa one was foam rubber. The ones from the first album were thin but then we got a little money and we were like, ‘Wow, let’s make some cool shit for the Iowa run!’ They used foam rubber, which was basically just like giant sponges. 

“You could tell where we were at in the show by how big my head was getting and how heavy this thing was.”

Taylor talks about an onstage incident that happened during a show in Kansas City, when the mask was so wet and heavy that if flew off his head “like a wine cork.”

He adds: “It was right in the middle of Heretic Anthem. I’ve got black makeup on my face and stuff, and here it is, just sitting in front of me.

“It was like putting on a rug that had been sitting out in the rain. This is what we go through for each and every one of you. And I love you for appreciating it.”

As for the easiest mask to wear, Taylor points to the one he wore in 2004 during the band’s shows in support of Vol. 3: (The Subliminal Verses).

But he adds: “However, it was the hardest to sing out of because it wasn’t symmetric – it was hard for me to get the mic up to my mouth, so it really changed the way that my vocals sounded.

“Which is why now when I do my mask I make sure that the rubber is flushed with my mouth so I can get the mic up to it.”

Slipknot are currently working on what will be their sixth studio album, with Taylor saying that while the new material was still in demo form, it was sounding Iowa levels of heavy.”

The follow-up to 2014’s .5: The Gray Chapter is expected to be released in 2019.

Scott Munro
Louder e-commerce editor

Scott has spent 35 years in newspapers, magazines and online as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014 before moving to the e-commerce team in 2020. Scott keeps Louder’s buyer’s guides up to date, writes about the best deals for music fans, keeps on top of the latest tech releases and reviews headphones, speakers, earplugs and more. Over the last 10 years, Scott has written more than 11,000 articles across Louder, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer and Prog. He's previously written for publications including IGN, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald newspapers, covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to tech reviews, video games, travel and whisky. Scott's favourite bands are Fields Of The Nephilim, The Cure, New Model Army, All About Eve, The Mission, Cocteau Twins, Drab Majesty, Marillion and Rush.