Metal used to be fun. Back before it became a gigantic pity party, battalions of magnificent bozos would exalt the joys of getting wasted at the weekend in between riding Harley-Davidsons into swimming pools and ODing in the back rooms of strip clubs. Happier times. Stupider times.
Corey Taylor remembers those days. He may have risen to fame as the singer with a band whose career was built on combustible self-loathing, but there was always the sense that he secretly knew where the party was at.
CMFT proves it. His debut solo album sits as far away from Slipknot and Stone Sour as those two bands do from each other, dialling the angst right down and ramping the unashamed tuneage right up. Corey has spent a lot of time recently trumpeting how much fun CMFT was to make, and that enthusiasm is infectious; this isn’t hair-metal redux, but it carries a sliver of its spirit in its sheer determination to have a good time all of the time.
The album was trailered by a pair of vastly different singles: the skyscraping arena-rock blockbuster Black Eyes Blue (one of the best songs here) and the laboured rap-metal throwdown CMFT Must Be Stopped (by far the weakest). The stylistic gulf between the two acts as a blueprint for the album; CMFT is all over the shop, in the best possible way. One minute he’s playing a freewheeling country-metal outlaw on HWY 666, the next he’s living out his backcombed Poison fantasies on the catchier-than-the-clap Samantha’s Gone. And yes, there’s a grandstanding piano ballad, Home, which is almost as good as Steel Panther’s Community Property.
If it’s cohesion – or self-flagellation – you’re after, stick with Slipknot. But if you want a record to ride a motorbike into a swimming pool, CMFT is the sound of a revving engine.