Slipknot have posted a photo of a possible new member and no one knows what's going on

(Image credit: Jonathan Weiner)

It's been a busy day in the Slipknot camp. After taking to social media to announce that longtime sampler and keyboardist Craig Jones had departed the band, the band then deleted the posts. 

Now they've shared a photo of unfamiliar masked figure, suggesting that a new member has joined the band in the wake of Jones' departure. Or, alternatively, that Jones is actually still with the band but has a new mask. It's complicated.

"If my theory is true then I think it’s absolutely genius," writes Slipknot fan jtaut on Instagram. "Craig has always been the silent and forgotten member of the band, so what better way to bring attention to him by fabricating a fun publicity stunt that also benefits the entire band and their upcoming new projects."

In the less-than-happy corner, ssusann14 posted, "NAHHH WHO THE FUCK IS THIS???? WHERES CRAIG."

Something is definitely going on. Late yesterday drummer Jay Weinberg teased a new mask of his own, releasing a 10-second clip accompanied by the single word 'evolve'. And photographs emerging from Slipknot's show at the Nova Rock Festival in Nickelsdorf, Austria, last night, show that the new member/newly remasked Craig (delete where appropriate) has already taken his place onstage. 

The Nova Rock show took place without Slipknot percussionist and co-founder Shawn 'Clown' Crahan, who is sitting out the current run of dates to look after his wife, who is suffering from unnamed health issues.

Slipknot headline the Sunday night of this weekend's historic, four-day Download festival in the UK. Their full list of European tour dates for summer 2023 can be seen below.

just saw slipknots new member/craig replacement live.. it was quite interesting from r/Slipknot

Slipknot European tour dates 2023

June 07: Nickelsdorf Nova Rock Festival, Austria
June 08: Hradec Rock For People, Czechia
June 10: Interlaken Greenfield Festival, Switzerland
June 11: Donington Download Festival, UK
June 13: Amsterdam Ziggo Dome, Netherlands
June 14: Esch-Sur-Alzette Rockhal, Luxembourg
June 16: Copenhagen Copenhell Festival, Denmark
June 17: Dessel Graspop Metal Meeting, Belgium
June 20: Hamburg Barclays Arena, Germany
June 21: Berlin Mercedes Benz Arena, Germany
June 24: Munich Königsplatz, Germany
June 25: Bologna Knotfest Italy, Italy
June 27: Nimes Arena Of Nimes, France
June 29: Lisbon Evil Live Festival, Portugal
June 30: Viveiro Resurrection Fest, Spain

Tickets are on sale now.

Fraser Lewry

Online Editor at Louder/Classic Rock magazine since 2014. 38 years in music industry, online for 25. Also bylines for: Metal Hammer, Prog Magazine, The Word Magazine, The Guardian, The New Statesman, Saga, Music365. Former Head of Music at Xfm Radio, A&R at Fiction Records, early blogger, ex-roadie, published author. Once appeared in a Cure video dressed as a cowboy, and thinks any situation can be improved by the introduction of cats. Favourite Serbian trumpeter: Dejan Petrović.