We had a hunch that Slipknot were in the studio right now, when posts on social media started surfacing in recent weeks suggesting as much. A new interview with Clown seems to confirm the rumors that Slipknot are in fact recording new material at the moment.
In a conversation with Download Festival host Kylie Olsson, Clown was asked about his current status and offered “I’m not gonna talk about how many songs, because, honestly, I can’t. But I can just tell you that I’m really happy, and the guys are really happy. [Corey] Taylor is on some level of singing that I’ve never heard him, which makes me really emotional, because here we are, here we are twenty years into it and it’s life, you know? It’s so almost not fair how much life it is for me…
“So, great music has been written, and because of that, my favorite singer on the planet has sang the songs. And this is the first time we can go into a studio with completed lyrics. When I say ‘completed,’ I mean written, recorded, but he’s still gonna have his time in the studio to project what he wants to for each individual song. So they’re as done as they can be until he comes in.
“So, we’re in L.A. That’s about all I can say, and we’re making God music, and we’re having a blast. And it’s just great to be around everybody, and everybody is in the best mood I’ve ever seen. And the last thing I’ll say about it, is I feel like we’ve come full circle. I feel like I have all these memories of when we started. I feel like a kid again. It’s a lot of fun right now…
“It’s a lot of fun being around the band; it’s a lot of fun not being stressed or having anxiety, and just doing what we do, because we’ve done it for 20 years. And people are finally, like, ‘Just do what you wanna do.’ And that’s unusual for us, because it’s usually me going, ‘No. This is what we’re gonna do, whether you like it or not.’ And people are like ‘blearghh’. So now, it’s just, like, ‘Do what you want.’ And, man, what a pleasant thing to receive after all these years. It’s a beautiful thing.”
It's not hard to put two and two together and see that they are in fact together and working on new music. Clown was asked a follow-up on if the sound of the album would be familiar, and he gave anything but a brief answer. “I think what everyone would understand and agree on is that we, as the players or the artists that we are, we’re always looking to solidify a certain awareness in us. So we’ve always pushed for being indifferent. Not on purpose, but to have the right to fully get this out.
“We have nothing to prove to anyone; we only have to prove it to ourselves. And I’ve always believed that our fans, our culture, loves us because they can trust us. They might not like what we decide, but they’re, like, ‘At least you decided it, and we’re gonna back it, because you thought about it.’
So, is the music different? The music’s always different. I wanna make different paintings. I don’t wanna create the same painting. Familiarity is good, but recreating the same thing is not, in our opinion.
“So, what I can tell you is this for this album: I believe this album is the final album to exercise the right of what we’re searching for. I think we’re mastering it on this one. I think it’s coming very easy. It’s a trust thing.
“You can imagine, Slipknot started as one thing, as zero, and then the expectation of us is at a million percent. And that’s not an expectation we put on ourselves; that’s the world. So we have to keep a clear mind on what it is we’re trying to do and not get focused away from anybody else.
“I think the songs people really love from Slipknot, we call ’em barn burners. And those are songs like ‘Surfacing‘. We affectionately call them barn burners. That’s what maybe the majority would like, but we sort of do that in our sleep. And if we only gave that to you, that Slipknot formula, that recipe, something would be lost.
“So what I can say is I believe that this collection of records, whatever it ends up being as an album, I really believe it’s gonna be the final — not an effort, but the final brushstroke of a thought process that we really started… Jim [Root, Slipknot guitarist] and I talked about it a lot. We really started this sort of thinking on ‘Vol. 3‘ and really picked it up — Jim and I were really able to pick up some sort of thought by creating ‘Look Outside Your Window‘; it was another avenue for he and I to work together. And then all of us have something to say. And I believe this is gonna be the last time that we have to feel like we have to get this thing out of us. And that’s exciting. Because who knows what the future is then?
“So, is it different? They’re all different. But they’re Slipknot. We would never… There’s no need to purposely… We search our souls, so we believe that you’re gonna love it, because we love it, I guess. So, it’s different. But I’ll tell you: I’ve never heard Corey Taylor like this right now — I just never heard him like this. I feel full circle.
“I almost feel like we’re giving homage to everything we grew up loving. I can hear so much of what I grew up, but it’s my favorite singer singing. I can’t say, ‘Oh, you sound like this person or that person.’ I feel like I’m a kid sneaking a beer at a KISS concert or something. I’m 14, 18, whatever… Let’s not say sneaking. Let’s say 21, and I go into a KISS concert at 21, and I’m having a beer. And I really feel like that right now. I’m having so much fun with the guys and just creating. We’re so chill and relaxed because we’ve learned so much.”
Watch the full interview below. In previous interviews, Taylor has hinted at a bit of a concept for the new album. Just last month, Corey Taylor told to KLOS' Matt Pinfield, Taylor said “I can’t say too much about it, and I can tell you that currently, we’ve compiled a lot of material, me and Clown have talked about something really, really cool if we could pull it off.
“There’s a chance that it could be conceptual if we can really do it right. The music is brilliant, it expands on what we did with ‘We Are Not Your Kind’ and kind of blossoms from there.
“But the great thing is – it’s got not only that, but it’s got everything that you would want from a Slipknot project – there’s the heavy stuff, there’s the dark stuff, there’s the melodic stuff, there’s the weird stuff.
“We have so many different flavors that we can play with that now, at this point, it’s just us mixing and matching and seeing what excites us.
“So that’s all I can say for right now but I can tell you that it’s really, really good. We’re entering a realm that we’ve never been and that to us is exciting.
“Especially after all of these years, we pride ourselves on always being able to try and top ourselves, and if we can pull this off, this may be the ultimate top ourselves.”
Maybe we will have new Slipknot by the end of the year.