Anticipation around this new Slipknot album is extremely high, as constant drama and news revolves around the band and its members. With Jim Root being booted out of Stone Sour, a series of rumors has begun circulating around what the future of the band will be; and as Root often describes it:
“The future of Slipknot is always in doubt,” guitarist Jim Root says. “I always prepare for each album as if it’s gonna be the last.”
Read more with Jim HERE
Perhaps it's for the best if this "attitude towards eventual demise" seems to be ever-present... Perhaps that helps fuel the band's angst-ridden writing and signature sound. Whatever it may be, let's hope they can keep it coming, as the band seems to have found all sorts of new groove and anger with the material that will comprise the upcoming ".5: The Gray Chapter".
Named in honor of the late, great, [former Slipknot bassist] Paul Gray; many thought this album would never see the light of day. After all, with Paul's death, and the departure of staple member: drummer Joey Jordison, the band lost two of its primary songwriters. To add to the mix, Corey and Jim, both members of Stone Sour had a falling out after Root parted ways with Stone Sour. Plus, the band would need to deal with the task of replacing two very unique pieces of the old Slipknot.
Amidst squashing rumors of who the new members are (sleuth-worthy fans seem to have done some excellent research already, but we won't perpetuate this any further), Slipknot truly has done a fine job at not ruining their old sound, but at the same time showing growth and even more diversity.
The first track our ears were hit with was "The Negative One", thought to have been written about Jordison. The second was the even more bash-your-head-in "The Devil In I", complete with blast beats and trademark ominous Root/Thomson guitar riffing. These track releases have been a part of a months-long process of hyping the new album release, which will also coincide with KNOTFEST and a subsequent tour.
Let's just say the guys know what the hell they're doing, as the internet music scene has been ablaze with every small detail revolving around this record and of course, this band.
So, this leaves us with "Custer". A track that begins with the Slipknot beat your head in, smashing rhythm that all fans crave. Over the main riff is a fitting-for-October/haunted carnival sounding set of of sampled screams. This segues curiously into a quiet spoken word section where you're left with Corey Taylor speaking quietly into your ear. From here on out, the song is just pure chaos, which many compare to the band's "Iowa" sound. Each chorus is filled with chant/scream-along lines which are sure to be lines to lose your lungs with at a concert.
In fact, Greg Kennelty at Metal Injection describes the song perfectly:
“Custer” starts off quickly with the band playing a hooky unison riff before breaking down into a bass drum, distorted bass and the occasional tom. Enter Corey Taylor, who starts off with a seemingly Lamb of God-influenced spoken word section before going flat out lunatic status. Right as the song explodes, there’s a quick change back to spoken word and then this four-on-the-floor chant that has everything come crashing down around you and ends on a scream that decays a little more every time it echoes off into the depths of the abyss.
This is the song that will have every single person at every single concert screaming at the top of their lungs for the chants before beating the everliving shit out of each other for the remainder of the song. This is the song you’re going to be blasting in your song when it comes on and scaring the piss out of the poor grandmother in the Buick next to you. There aren’t too many components to this one. It’s a pounding sound that takes on that electronica aesthetic of beating you submission.
If you would like to read their full track-by-track review, check it out HERE
So, without further adieu, Slipknot's "Custer":
So far, the three songs that have been released seem to show that 2015 Slipknot is not only still heavy, but still able to deliver songs that can please a variety of ears. The new album is going to feature an insane 14 tracks, which by the titles alone, should prove to be just what fans have been craving.