“This song is underrated!” Watch the only time Slipknot have performed All Hope Is Gone’s incredible title track live

Corey Taylor of Slipknot onstage in 2008
(Image credit: Jakubaszek/Getty Images)

It’s fair to say that All Hope Is Gone is the most controversial of Slipknot’s releases. When it came out in 2008, it rocketed to number one on the US Billboard chart (the band’s first time in that position) and spawned their immortal single Psychosocial. However, in the intervening years, The Nine themselves have spoken out against the album, lambasting it as overly safe-sounding. They’ve also admitted it was recorded in a disjointed way, despite All Hope… being the first music the Iowans made in their home state since the Mate Feed Kill Repeat demo.

Famously, percussionist Shawn “Clown” Crahan told Google Play in 2014: “[All Hope Is Gone is] my least favourite [Slipknot album]: no tension, no pain – just efficiency. Being able to go home, able to sleep, is not good, not for what we do.” Guitarist Jim Root added that the producer, Dave Fortman, was unable to get the nonet together in the same room.

Because of this distaste, some amazing tunes from Slipknot’s fourth full-length have been unfairly assigned to the scrapheap of time. Case in point, the title track.

The ’Knot released All Hope Is Gone as the lead single of the album of the same name on June 23, 2008: almost two months in advance. They subsequently gave it its live debut at the Mayhem festival in Seattle, Washington, on July 9. But then… nothing. The song never graced a setlist again and is still a fervent demand of fans on social media whenever a new tour’s announced.

It’s a crying shame, given how excellently performed the track during its sole airing (footage embedded below). It’s the same thrash/groove metal jolt as it is on its parent album, powered into lightspeed by Joey Jordison’s impressive blast beats. Meanwhile, Corey Taylor is at his venomous best, snarling the state of contemporary US politics with such lines as, ‘The bill of rights is a bill of sale! What will you do when the war is over?’

The comments under the recorded footage agree that All Hope Is Gone should see the light of day once more. “This song is underrated,” the most-liked one declares, with another user stating: “Underrated af! This chorus is so powerful!”

Needless to say, based on goodwill and sheer musical quality alone, this is a track that deserves a comeback. It’s unlikely: Corey’s previously voiced displeasure at pulling out deep cuts, due to the risk of them being performed to an auditorium of unenthused faces. But, for as long as Slipknot keep this one in the vault, there will be those demanding its release back into the live show.

Matt Mills
Contributing Editor, Metal Hammer

Louder’s resident Gojira obsessive was still at uni when he joined the team in 2017. Since then, Matt’s become a regular in Prog and Metal Hammer, at his happiest when interviewing the most forward-thinking artists heavy music can muster. He’s got bylines in The Guardian, The Telegraph, NME, Guitar and many others, too. When he’s not writing, you’ll probably find him skydiving, scuba diving or coasteering.