Jim Root sat in with Triple J Radio and addressed the departure from his former band Stone Sour - which is fronted by his Slipknot bandmate Corey Taylor. Recent interviews have implied that he was unhappy with certain members of the group. Given his latest comments, you can likely rule out Taylor as the source of the tension.
On the situation that led to his departure from Stone Sour:
“I think, in some ways, there are certain people in that band that are just extremely impatient, and they think that they need to have everything that they have, and they need to realize that the only reason they have anything of what they have is because Slipknot made it possible for them to have what they have. Slipknot has graciously and kindly stepped aside and let this other band do everything that it’s ever needed or wanted to do, yet this band can’t seem to take a break for Slipknot to do what it needs to do. And, I don’t know… For me, it seemed like it was a little bit of a smack in the face. So it just got to the point, for me, where I couldn’t stand it anymore, and I needed to work on Slipknot, it was apparent, and it was becoming more and more apparent the more shows that we were doing. And that’s essentially how that sort of happened.”
On how the split impacted his relationship with Corey Taylor:
“I’ve never had a problem with Corey. You know what I mean? Corey and I understand each other a lot better than anybody else from the other bands could, because we’ve been pullng double duty for all these years. And when you’ve got other people in the bands that you’re in that don’t share that common thing, they could never really understand what it is. And after a while you become so spread thin that it becomes really hard to give a hundred percent to both things, and eventually there comes a time where you have to say, ‘Enough is enough,’ and, ‘I need to put my focus a hundred percent into what it is that made this all possible for all of us,’ And let’s face it: Slipknot is a world-class, cult-status band, and it’s where my passion lies.
That’s not to say I’m not passionate about Stone Sour-I’m absolutely passionate about everything that I contributed to Stone Sour - but there are certain people in that band that have a different idea of what Stone Sour should be, and I don’t necessarily wanna be in a radio band, so to speak, you know what I mean? I’d rather be creative and be artistic and be able to play intricate music that moves and really takes you on a journey. About the closest Stone Sour ever came to that were the two records that we just released, and I don’t know that they’ll ever do that again in the future.”
On the prospect of starting another project:
“That’s one of the things that I’ve kinda learned from having two bands. It might be fun to play with some other people or maybe write songs with some other people. But to have another full band with other people where you spend the time in the studio and you put together a full album cycle of touring after that, it really spreads ya thin man. It’s a lot to take on. I commend Corey for wanting to continue all that—if he does, ya know what I mean?—but I know Corey has a lot of other interests in his life, he wants to pursue acting.
He writes books—he’s an author. I know he likes to go out and play with Slash and these bands like Camp Freddy around LA and stuff like that, so… I think if we were all just focus a little bit more on Slipknot that would afford us to more time to really have fun and do the other things that we want to do. It’s hard to say though, I can’t read anybody’s mind, I can’t really take them at their word for anything. You know, actions to me speak louder to words and only time will really tell.
Right now we’re all in a really good headspace and we’re all getting along very well. And everybody is extremely excited about this record and passionate about this record and that’s really all that matters right now at this time, ya know? If I find myself in three years from now at the end of this album cycle and there’s no talking of doing another album, I’m going to continue to write music. Whether that ends up being Slipknot music or whether that ends up being something for something else… I guess only time will tell that.”
Corey Taylor caught up with Revolver where the topic expectedly turned to the bands as-yet unannounced new bassist and drummer—reportedly Alessandro “Vman” Venturella and Jay Weinberg respectively. On the ‘leak’ of Venturella‘s identity, Taylor stated:
“It wasn’t something we’d even thought of and it didn’t even occur to us until it hit. I was like, “Aw, man. C’mon.” But the funny thing is, I was doing a radio interview and I was laughing about it. And then the story got picked up by all these media outlets that implied I was incensed, angry, and outraged. No, not really. If you listen to the interview, I’m laughing my ass off. It just goes to show you, in this TMZ world, people are gonna pick up something just so they can make a story out of it. It would be nothing for me to make an argument out of it, but at that point it was like, “Man, who gives a shit?””
On keeping their identities a secret:
“To me, it’s more about the collective. It’s more about the group than it is those individuals. And people don’t know for sure all the details, which is part of the fun of it, too–keeping people on the edge of their seats.”
Meanwhile, on the topic of rock allegedly being dead, as stated by Kiss bassist/vocalist Gene Simmons:
“”Skeptic” beat Taylor Swift on the songs charts on iTunes. That’s a pretty big fuck you to the pop world. So if rock’s dead than this corpse is walking around smacking people.”
Paul's widow Brenna Gray testified in the involuntary manslaughter trial of the doctor who treated Paul in the days before his 2010 death that she tried reaching out to some of Paul's bandmates in SLIPKNOT just days prior to the bassist's death but that none of them wanted to get involved. She revealed, "One was playing golf two minutes away from our house but couldn't come. Nobody else cared, nobody was involved. They told me it was my problem."
Asked if Brenna was wrong in making those comments during the trial, Root told Sweden Rock Magazine (original English-language quote provided exclusively to BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "I think she's probably gonna say whatever it is she thinks she needs to say for the lawyers to hear. You know, I mean, Paul was our brother; Paul was very close to us. We tried putting Paul into treatment numerous times, we took him off of tours and we had interventions with him. I would stop by at Paul's house with my ex-girlfriend and he'd still be in bed.
"There are a lot of circumstances and dynamics there and I'm sure that she is hurting very deeply and trying to find some way to maybe put the blame somewhere.
"At the end of the day, Paul was sick and Paul had a problem and we were there for Paul. "Paul wasn't always available. "I feel bad. I feel bad for the whole situation. "Brenna's always got brothers that she can count on, and October will always have eight uncles that give a shit."
Pressed on whether he was saying the other members of SLIPKNOT did in fact care enough about Paul's well being, Root replied: "Absolutely. He's our friend, he's our brother, he's our compatriot. He's always gonna be a part of our lives no matter what.
"What can you do? If you have a sickness, you gotta fix that sickness, but you can't keep putting somebody into treatment over and over and over again. What are you supposed to do? Babysit someone and live with them? What can you do?"
Brenna revealed in a 2011 interview with Revolver that her husband had agreed to get help for his drug problem just one day before he died on May 24, 2010.
Paul was found dead in a hotel room in a suburb of Des Moines, Iowa, where he and SLIPKNOT were based. He was 38 years old. He left behind his widow and a daughter, October, who was born three months after his death.
Brenna said on the witness stand at the Polk Country District Court in Iowa in April 2014 that Paul's final weeks were a "blur of extreme drug abuse," which neither his doctor nor his bandmates would help his wife confront.
Daniel Baldi was facing involuntary manslaughter charges in the deaths of Gray and eight others. Baldi was accused of causing the deaths with his careless prescription habits. Baldi denied the claim, with his lawyer saying that Baldi didn't prescribe the drugs that resulted in the deaths.
Brenna testified on the stand that Baldi continued to prescribe Xanax for Paul despite knowing that the musician was a drug addict, saying, "I just wasn't really sure why he was on it, why he needed it along with the medication he was taking for addiction."
Baldi's lawyer cross-examined Brenna, asking her if she was aware that her husband overdosed on the painkillers fentanyl and morphine, neither of which Baldi ever prescribed to him.
SLIPKNOT singer Corey Taylor told The Pulse Of Radio back at the one-year anniversary of Gray's death how he felt about the loss of his friend and bandmate. "I just miss him, you know," he said. "I miss him so much sometimes that it doesn't feel like he's gone, and there are times when I'm thinking and he's in my train of thought and I have to stop myself and go, 'Oh, God, he's not here.' But you know, I mean, there's not a day that goes by that I don't miss him. I mean, not even as far as the band goes — I wish that he was there to watch his daughter grow."
Video stream for Knotfest.
We spoke with Slipknot frontman Corey Taylor about the band’s return, who he’s looking forward to seeing at Knotfest, and the proposed “Scent of Slipknot” permeating the air at the festival.
How hard was it to go back into the studio without Paul and Joey?
For me, there was some hesitation. But we all knew that for us to truly move on, we all had to come together. Part of that involved actually sitting down and talking about what we were dealing with. We hadn’t really done that before returning to the studio. It alleviated a lot of the pressure that we might have been putting ourselves through.
How much catharsis was attained by moving forward with the new album?
For me, it was definitely a very cathartic experience. Lyrically, I went to a lot of brutally honest places. It felt good to put that much ferocity and focus back into this. I’m proud that I was able to take the grieving process and show the world what we’ve been going through…peeling back the curtain and saying, "This is what being human means sometimes, and it’s not always good."
Would you consider the new album the most personal you have released?
It’s definitely the most personal lyrically since Iowa. I’m dealing with everything in a more mature way now. Iowa was about a lot of issues that were clinging from when I was younger. But this album is about an adult dealing with one of the biggest losses of his life, and how that relates to himself, his family, his band, and everything around him, and how those repercussions infiltrate everything in your life.
Are there any bands playing Knotfest that you are hoping to see yourself?
Amen is one of my all-time favorite bands. I’ve known Casey Chaos for 16 years. They were recording their first album with Ross Robinson when we were coming in to record the first Slipknot album. I love that they’re coming back. And even though Dave Lombardo is not playing this show, Roy Mayorga from Stone Sour is playing drums with them. Not only will I get to see Amen, but I’ll get to see my Stone Sour brother play with them.
Seriously, what’s up with the Scent of Slipknot?
The only way I can answer that is that Clown is a very extraordinary individual. When he described what he was thinking, I stared at him for a very long time. But I trust his instinct when it comes to creativity and art. He is so creatively committed to this band. If he says the smell of Slipknot is burning camel poop, I have to back him on that!
(NOTE: at press time, local fire officials have banned the proposed burning of camel dung. There are reports that the band is looking for alternate methods of pulling off “The Scent of Slipknot.”)
Knotfest takes place at the San Manuel Amphitheater and Campground Friday, Oct. 24 through Saturday, Oct. 26. For complete lineup and tickets, visit www.knotfest.com.
Credit for story: http://www.laweekly.com/westcoastsound/2014/10/24/corey-taylor-is-ready-for-knotfest-and-the-scent-of-slipknot
Slipknot have taken part in an 26-minute ‘Audiobiography’ that examines their personal history and back catalogue for Google Play.