Slipknot
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#0 Sid "DJ Starscream" Wilson
#1 Joey Jordison
#2 Paul Gray
#3 Chris Fehn
#4 James Root
#5 Craig "133" Jones
#6 Shawn "Clown" Crahan
#7 Mick Thomson
#8 Corey Taylor
Slipknot frontman Corey Taylor knew this band was destined for greatness. He also knew that it wouldn't come easy. "When we were starting out, we had all these strikes against us," he says. "We were from Iowa, there were nine of us, we wore masks, we wore coveralls, and we played metal. Hard metal. And then there were all the haters..."

Ah yes, the haters. People who like nothing more than to give the band flack for their image, for substituting numbers for names, for putting on a show full of unhinged chaos and unmitigated mayhem. Some comments came from the usual assortment of no-mark websites and so-called music critics, but surprisingly, "we also took a lot of shit from other bands," says guitarist James Root. "When we hit the road with Ozzfest in 1999, I heard a lot of condescending remarks from other musicians. They were saying, 'Slipknot won't sell enough records, they won't survive, they've got too many people, nobody's gonna get it, they're all about image.'" "The joke's on them," retorts Taylor with wicked glee. "Our music stood up. We're much more popular now and it wasn't because of our image. It was the music."

Now, most of the bands who turned slagging off Slipknot into entertainment have fallen off the face of the planet. The Grammy-Award winning 'Knot, on the other hand, have spent over a decade cementing their status as one of heavy music’s most extreme, yet most respected acts. They've dropped four critically-acclaimed studio albums, a live album and three full-length DVDs, all of which racked up gold and platinum awards on both sides of the Atlantic and around the globe.

While the heart of Slipknot remains its music, its soul is planted firmly onstage. Today, Slipknot play sold-out arenas and headline major festivals, but the band developed their skills by slogging it out in the Midwest, playing any show they could find. These were frequently one-off shows; with the band travelling from their hometown of Des Moines to places like Omaha and Chicago.

"There were never any actual tours in those days," says Thomson. "Our shows were like sporting events: we’d put everything into them and then afterwards, we'd be fucking exhausted. We weren't going to pile into a van - all nine of us - then drive all night to the next show. We'd have fallen asleep at the wheel and died. I don't miss that shit at all. It was 8,000 degrees, you're bumping into people, tripping over equipment. Those small stages have low ceilings, so the heat's trapped real low, right at your head. Those shows were about survival, not about playing.”

"Everyone tried to control us, though," says Taylor. "Yeah, those fuckers," says Thomson. "We'd be on tour and fire marshals would show up with camcorders and accuse us of all kinds of crazy bullshit. They'd say, 'We heard you set yourselves on fire.' "Well…okay, we'd done that!" Thomson continues, laughing. "Sid and Clown would spray each other with lighter fluid and then pull out lighters. That got us in trouble. One promoter would call the next - they'd warn each other and they'd hit us with 'do not' lists. We were castrated."

Surviving over 10 years is an accomplishment for any band. With Slipknot, it feels like nothing short of a miracle. Strong personalities frequently collided, on-stage fights were common, and side-projects lent a welcome diversion between releases. Yet year after year, album after album, they all kept coming back for more. "We're banded together in hate," says Jordison. "Sometimes we hate each other, sometimes we hate the world, and sometimes we just hate our own lives. But when we get together, something monstrous happens and we pull this amazing sound out of all that energy. "Plus," he adds, "we believe in world domination and this is the band that's gonna get us there."

Chris Fehn agrees. "I think the best part about being in this band has been getting exposure to the rest of the world. You realize that everything in the world is the same - people feel the same, they have the same desires, hopes, fears. Being worldly is a gift that I don't ever want to give back. It changes your life - especially when you're from a small town in Iowa."

"I always knew we'd go far. I just knew it," says Taylor. "There was no way this band was going to fail. But I never knew we'd reach the heights we've come to. We've travelled the world so many times; all the different countries are like our second homes. To this day, it still blows me away that we took this crazy idea and made it a global sensation."

Slipknot’s most recent studio album, 2008’s All Hope is Gone, debuted at #1 on the Billboard Top 200 chart in the US – the first time in their US career - mirroring the No.1 slot taken by 2001’s, Iowa, on the UK album chart. Slipknot then embarked on a hugely successful two-year touring trek that played to packed houses across the globe, including a headline show at New York City’s legendary Madison Square Garden and culminating in the UK with a headline slot at the annual Download Festival at Donington Park, in front of a packed house of 80,000 fans.

The performance was captured in Slipknot’s most recent DVD release, (sic)nesses and it puts you firmly in the front row. 30 cameras were utilized to capture every angle as the nine-piece motored through a stellar set. Perhaps most importantly, (sic)nesses is one of the final major performances from founding member Paul Gray, who tragically passed away in May 2010. While initially unintended, the concert is a testament to the legacy of Gray, and fans can enjoy a lasting glimpse of the bassist doing what he loved most.

Slipknot’s return to the fray this last summer for a string of European shows to honor Gray’s memory, peaked once again in a performance that is now the stuff of legend, their headline set at the UK’s Sonisphere Festival at the world-famous Knebworth Park. The shows were heavy with emotion, but underlined the band’s unbreakable drive and tenacity, and refocused their energies for the task ahead of them in 2012.

Outside of their co-headline slot on Australia’s Soundwave Festival in February/March, who knows what this creative powerhouse will emerge with next or what the remainder of 2012 will bring to their door. One thing’s for sure though – you may try to guess their next move, but never underestimate Slipknot, because they’ll always throw you a curveball… Promo Joey and his new Promark sicks The new masks - ALL HOPE IS GONE 2008 SLIPKNOT- 2008 The new masks - ALL HOPE IS GONE 2008 CHRIS The new masks - ALL HOPE IS GONE 2008 PAUL The new masks - ALL HOPE IS GONE 2008 MICK The new masks - ALL HOPE IS GONE 2008 JOEY The new masks - ALL HOPE IS GONE 2008 COREY The new masks - ALL HOPE IS GONE 2008 SID The new masks - ALL HOPE IS GONE 2008 JAMES The new masks - ALL HOPE IS GONE 2008 CHRIS The new masks - ALL HOPE IS GONE 2008 CLOWN All Hope Is Gone Live Shots Madison Square Garden, NYC - Photos by Brian Hineline Madison Square Garden, NYC - Photos by Brian Hineline Madison Square Garden, NYC - Photos by Brian Hineline Madison Square Garden, NYC - Photos by Brian Hineline Madison Square Garden, NYC - Photos by Brian Hineline Madison Square Garden, NYC - Photos by Brian Hineline Madison Square Garden, NYC - Photos by Brian Hineline Madison Square Garden, NYC - Photos by Brian Hineline Madison Square Garden, NYC - Photos by Brian Hineline Madison Square Garden, NYC - Photos by Brian Hineline Madison Square Garden, NYC - Photos by Brian Hineline Madison Square Garden, NYC - Photos by Brian Hineline Madison Square Garden, NYC - Photos by Brian Hineline Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon Pictures from Madison Square Garden by Samuel J. Roon "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - LONDON, Hammersmith Apollo 2nd December 2008 - Picture by Kirsten Lane "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - LONDON, Hammersmith Apollo 2nd December 2008 - Picture by Kirsten Lane "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - LONDON, Hammersmith Apollo 2nd December 2008 - Picture by Kirsten Lane "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - LONDON, Hammersmith Apollo 2nd December 2008 - Picture by Kirsten Lane "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - LONDON, Hammersmith Apollo 2nd December 2008 - Picture by Kirsten Lane "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - LONDON, Hammersmith Apollo 2nd December 2008 - Picture by Kirsten Lane "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - LONDON, Hammersmith Apollo 2nd December 2008 - Picture by Kirsten Lane "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - LONDON, Hammersmith Apollo 2nd December 2008 - Picture by Kirsten Lane "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam "All Hope Is Gone" tour, with support from Machine Head and Children of Bodom - Amsterdam Press ROCK SOUND MAY 2009 GUITARIST FEB 09 FRONT FEB 09 Dated December 6th 2009 KERRANG ISSUE 1239 Other