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CD Review: SLIPKNOT – Antennas To Hell

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If Slipknot has been off your radar in the past few months, it’s imperative to know that this is not exactly a new album from the band. I know I perked up immediately when I had first heard reports of Antennas To Hell coming out, but was subsided a bit after learning it was a just compilation album, not one with new material. So it is essentially a greatest hits album, but we all know what happens to bands that release greatest hits albums. Does this mean Slipknot will soon suffer the same fate?

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Antennas To Hell is a 3-disc collection. The first disc is the greatest hits portion, with two live tracks from the Disasterpieces performance. The second disc is a live performance of the band at Download Festival 2009, and the third a DVD of all their music videos including 10 bonus videos directed by Shawn “Clown” Crahan. It’s been a while since I’ve really listened to Slipknot but I have a deep affinity for a lot of the older Slipknot material, so I was happy to get back into the older nitty gritty of Slipknot. The greatest hits portion was put together very well. They’re in chronological order by release, and they’re either songs that made it into music videos, or generally accepted fan favorites. I also loved the inclusion of some of the Disasterpieces tracks, particularly one of the tracks they used, (“The Heretic Anthem”) as I’ve always thought Disasterpieces was an awesome live performance. The 2nd live CD I kinda thought was a bit unnecessary. Most of the tracks on the live CD were already on the greatest hits album. Plus, they already have 9.0: Live, and Disasterpieces. Granted, Disasterpieces didn’t have the tracks from Vol 3: The Subliminal Verses, and 9.0: Live didn’t have performances from All Hope Is Gone, but do we really need another live Slipknot performance pressed onto a disc? It seems ridiculous to expect some sort of live release in between each of their studio albums, as the custom seems to be for them. But I know lots of fans would love to own as much live material from the band as possible. The band probably knows that as well, which is why it’s on there in the first place.

Even though I wasn’t into the live disc, I can also appreciate how it would relate to the whole picture of Antennas To Hell. I can see that the band really made it more of a tribute to their career so far than just a regular 1-disc greatest hits album. We have the studio work, the live energy, and media portrayal all in one collection, which makes for a truly awesome experience. This is also the first release by the band since the death of bassist Paul Gray, which consequently made fans speculate about the Knot’s future. Certainly releasing Antennas To Hell probably didn’t quell fan’s fears, but the band is still remaining active. Their first annual festival Knotfest is still set for next month which includes other huge names like Deftones, and Cannibal Corpse, the opening of a Slipknot museum is to coincide with Knotfest, and they’ve released a few statements regarding work on a new original album. Crahan has stated that he refuses to call Antennas To Hell a greatest hits album because of all the negative connotations it has, and it seems like they’re doing their best to not walk down that same road many other bands have walked on. It’s probably best not to take Antennas To Hell as the start of the end, but hopefully just the start of another chapter from the book of Slipknot.

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