Any thoughts of Stone Sour being a mere side project to Corey Taylor’s day job as Slipknot’s lead ghoul were shot to bits with the release of House Of Gold And Bones Part I.
A concept album about a man travelling through a hell of his own making, the ambitious project continues with Part 2, and it’s every bit as sprawling and dramatic as you’d expect from something set to be followed by a four-part comic book expanding on the story within the songs.
Luckily, despite the defiantly prog nature of the project, the album stands up on its own merits without the additional hoopla. There’s a definite grunge flavour to the whole thing, the influence of Alice In Chains hanging heavy over Sadist and Gravesend (please let it be about purgatory in Kent).
But with flashes of glam Sunset Strip rock in (appropriately enough) ’82, redneck disco in Black John and deeply unpleasant, bombastic MOR in The Conflagration, this is a varied experience that’s not afraid to dip a toe into the waters of Lake Ridiculous.