Album: The End, So Far
Label: Roadrunner Records
Release Date: 09/30/2022
Location: Des Moines, Iowa
Written by Brian Lloyd
No one can carry a chorus like Corey Taylor, not and still be called extreme metal, and The End, So Far is no exception. Slipknot has done something here that few bands can ever say, that they can retain their heaviness and still manage to be a commercial success. Here Slipknot do what they do and they do it like they haven’t done it in years. Calling back to sounds from albums like Iowa, and Vol. 3 (The Subliminal Verses), The End, So Far is if anything a call back to a time when this band sounded hungry, angry, and reaching for more.
Tracks like The Dying Song (Time to Sing) and The Chapeltown Rag give us the sound of classic Slipknot at its heaviest and yet there are moments of breaks and drums that make them sound like their musical chops have been sharpened, but it’s on tracks like Adderall and Yen where Slipknot have stepped out of their own shadow and maybe even out of their own way and experimented with different ideas. The former a piano and choir tinged intro to the album that is easily going to shock fans and the former a crooning, grungy ballad that only barely sounds like what you’d expect from a band that has had a specific sound that’s been around for over 25 years.
Instrumentally Slipknot have never sounded this good. Each of their 9 members shines through in each song. Which is saying something because many would argue that some of their members are unnecessary, here they prove that false. Sharp guitar tones bleed into well produced drum sounds and effects that fill the soundscapes of each track. DJ Sid Wilson gets a bit more play on this album as well, showing off his trademark sound in more places and less than obvious ways. Songs like Medicine for the Dead and Acidic sound like a completely different but vibrantly new band.
Slipknot sounds like they are younger versions of themselves. Angry and vicious as ever yet there is something different here that gives way to an album that may be polarizing to fans. If you came for the classic Slipknot anthems and Taylor’s signature delivery it’s here, but this album isn’t just that. An almost progressive and forward thinking idea stretches across the tracks and makes this maybe Slipknot’s most auditorily most interesting album.
Listen to and order the album: