Music / Slipknot
From left to right: 6, 0, 2, 3, 1, 7, 8, 5, 4
Related Acts:
  • Stone Sour (Taylor and Root)
  • Dirty Little Rabbits (Crahan)
  • Murderdolls (Jordison)
  • DJ Starscream (Solo)
  • To My Suprise (Crahan)
  • Junk Beer Kidnap Band (Taylor's solo career back-up band)
  • Will Haven (Fehn, as Bassist)
  • Hail! (Supergroup involving Paul Gray; going on without him)
  • Scar the Martyr (Jordison, later folded and was brought back as Vimic)
  • Vimic (Jordison)
  • Sinsaenum (Jordison)
"I've felt the hate rise up in me...
Kneel down and clear the stone of leaves...
I wander out where you can't see...
Inside my shell I wait and bleed..."
"Wait and Bleed"

Slipknot is a Nu Metal/Groove Metal band from Des Moines, Iowa, known for their masks, nine-person membership, identical jumpsuits, and chaotic live performances. Each member is given a number from 0 to 8 (in the order that each member joined the band). They're sometimes referred to collectively as The Nine. They are one of the most successful and popular bands in the metal genre.

Current Members:
  • #0: Sid "DJ Starscream" Wilson: Turntables
  • #3: Chris Fehn: Custom percussion, backing vocals
  • #4: Jim "The Jester" Root: Guitar
  • #5: Craig "133 mHz" Jones: Samples, media
  • #6: Shawn "Clown" Crahan: Custom percussion, backing vocals
  • #7: Mick Thomson: Guitar
  • #8: Corey "The Great Big Mouth" Taylor: Lead vocals
  • #?: Alessandro Venturella: Bass (confirmed by Corey himself)
  • #?: Jay Weinberg: Drums (was intended to stay unconfirmed for a while for various reasons in spite of a preponderance of evidence in his favor; nevertheless, his identity was leaked in late 2014 by a former drum tech)

Notable Former Members
  • #1: Joey Jordison: Drums. (was in the band from its inception until December 2013. The reasons for his departure were unknown for some time but eventually revealed to be acute transverse myelitis.)
  • * #2: Paul "The Pig" Gray (1972-2010): Bass guitar. (Probably would have lasted longer if it wasn't for his untimely death.)
  • Donnie Steele: Bass Guitar (temporary touring replacement for Gray from 2011-2014; previously played guitar 1995-1996)
  • Josh Brainard: Guitar (a member from 1995-1999, was #4 until he left during the recording process of the debut; everything on the album save for "Purity" and "Me Inside" was tracked by him)


Other popular songs:

Taylor also performs guest vocals for the Apocalyptica song "I'm Not Jesus".

The band and the media around them provide examples of:

  • Arc Number:
    • 9.
    • 742617000027 (the UPC number for their EP Mate. Feed. Kill. Repeat.) and its accompanying barcode are a standard decoration on their jumpsuits; "742617000027" is also the title of the first track on Slipknot.
  • The Big Guy:
    • Root and Thomson. Root is actually a little taller, but lanky; Thomson is bulkier.
    • Inverted with Jordison, who is by far the shortest member of the band.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Several:
    • Wilson is very skilled as a turntablist and is famous outside of Slipknot as DJ Starscream...but he's frequently gotten into fistfights with Crahan on stage, and broken Fehn's drum kit with his headbanging. He even broke both his feet by jumping from a piece of equipment, which Taylor later poked fun at by yelling "You broke your fucking feet, Sid!" while Wilson was on stage in a wheelchair.
    • Crahan hits everything, lights himself on fire, does backflips off equipment and has managed to bruise his pelvis and break his collarbones in the process, and more.
  • Butt-Monkey: Alessandro and Jay, the two replacements for Paul and Joey respectively. Not even the band holds them in high regard, and aren't afraid to publicly lambaste them. Taylor and Crahan, however, have both said this is a method of testing them, to see if they can deal with the pressure of possibly being the permanent replacements for two longtime members.
  • A Day in the Limelight: Behind The Player: Paul Gray is one of the few outlets by the band focusing on a single member.
  • Demoted to Extra: Craig Jones used to play guitar on his early days in Slipknot before he switched to less prominent keyboards.
  • Department of Redundancy Department: They call their style of music "Metal Metal".
  • The Faceless: Photographs of Jones without his mask on are exceptionally hard to come by. Crosses with The Voiceless and/or The Quiet One as you can see below. Photos of Thomson's face without sunglasses are also not terribly easy to find, though they do exist.
  • Genre Shift: Slipknot started out as a Nu Metal band, but with their album All Hope Is Gone have moved into more of a Groove Metal direction. .5: The Gray Chapter on the other hand, returns to their nu metal roots while still keeping elements of their later albums.
  • Gentle Giant: Thomson. Whilst he looks pants-pissingly terrifying, he is apparently really a tender, poetry-writing, cat lover, though a rather embarrassing arrest from 2015 shows that he (and his brother, for that matter) should probably stay away from the booze.
    • As one YouTube commentator (rather simply) put it: "He looks scary and angry but has a nice voice."
  • Iconic Logo: The nine-pointed star, stylized S, and unique font for the band name.
  • I Am the Band: Shawn, given that he's the only original member. Various other members have all said in interviews that Slipknot is first and foremost his band.
  • Juggalo: Some overlap; see Fan Community Nicknames.
  • Limited Wardrobe: The jumpsuits, although when All Hope Is Gone came around each member came up with a unique costume design, as can be seen in the current page image. They now bounce back and forth between these getups and the jumpsuits.
    • Also, currently Alessandro and Jay, the new members, wear the same temporary mask, as the band feels that to immediately give them the same status as their predecessors would be seen as disrespectful. Apparently, they had been given the challenge to design a mask for themselves, but after failing to produce a result of sufficient quality, the privilege was revoked.
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: Not as badly as Trans-Siberian Orchestra, but still... nine people is an awful lot, especially for rock bands. It doesn't help when people still question if Jones actually does anything.
  • Long-Runner Line-up: Believe it or not, they fit. The band was Sid Wilson, Joey Jordison, Paul Gray, Chris Fehn, Jim Root, Craig Jones, Shawn Crahan, Mick Thomson, and Corey Taylor from 1999 (when Root replaced Josh Brainaird) to 2010, when Paul Gray died.
  • Malevolent Masked Men
  • Mascot: That goat from Iowa perhaps?
  • Mondegreen: "I wonder how why you can't see/Inside Michelle  I wait and bleed" from "Wait and Bleed".
    • Also, from "Psychosocial" we have: "Pikachu's a virgin" and "Just cook me in the ass and say I'm raw"actual lyrics .
    • "Won't let this build up in sodomy" from "Vermillion".
    • From "New Abortion": "I'm ethereal, my children are eating cereal!" note 
  • Monster Clown: Crahan, especially his Iowa-era mask.
  • Nintendo Hard: "Before I Forget" is one of the harder songs on Guitar Hero III. As of 12/4/09, a Slipknot pack has been announced for Rock Band. Drummers beware.
    • "Before I Forget" will be making a comeback... on Rock Band 3 with Pro-modenote  guitar playing and two added cymbals.
    • As of December 2012, there are only 2 of over 2100 Harmonix-charted songs that have never been full-comboed on guitar.note  "Pulse of the Maggots" is one of the two.note 
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Weinberg. Root has gone on record as having vowed to never reveal the drummer's identity, as none of them are sure if he'll stick around or not; that being said, his height, hair color and length, and disclosed background elements line up with Weinberg, and the setup that was seen at Knotfest (SJC Custom snare, toms, and kicks and Zildjian cymbals, both of which have been used extensively by Weinberg over the course of his career; additionally, SJC is a fairly small-time manufacturer, so there's less of a chance for false positives) is probably the strongest indicator that the rumors are true. Sometimes called the worst-kept secret in music of 2014; within a few months of his joining, a disgruntled former drum tech leaked an itinerary list onto Instagram that finally confirmed both him and Alessandro Venturella
    • Alessandro is probably even worse. Tip for you guys: want to keep your new bassist's identity a secret? Make sure his hand tattoos aren't visible. Taylor has even laughingly concded they simply didn't think of that one.
  • Pig Man: Gray's mask during the Slipknot days was a pig head with a padlock in the nose.
    • Subverted after that, due to their feud with Mushroomhead. Many noted that both bassists wore Pig masks (Mushroomhead's bassist also had the stagename Pig Benis).
  • Public Medium Ignorance: They don't and have never played Death Metalnote . Yet they've somehow become the public face of extremity in metal.note 
  • The Quiet One: Jones both uses and subverts this. While he can be chatty and usually talks to fans after concerts, he typically doesn't show up for group interviews or, if he does, usually only answers the question of what he would be doing if he weren't in a band: he would be out driving a forklift somewhere, or out killing people. It's been insinuated by the other band members that he is simply a very private person who is uncomfortable with fame and has cultivated a standoffish persona in an effort to get people to leave him alone. Thomson, while not quite as reclusive as Jones, is also known for keeping a low profile, though touring death metal acts hitting the Des Moines area can generally expect to see him pop up and say hi.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Crahan showed up to the 48th Grammys to accept Slipknot's award for "Before I Forget" wearing the only thing he could call fancy clothes: a pink jumpsuit.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Slipknot is the red oni to Stone Sour's blue. While the latter still qualify as metal, they are much more melodic and much less chaotic. The members of Stone Sour are also much less likely to injure themselves on stage.
  • The Rockumentary
  • Shout-Out: Their masks in regards to old horror movies.
  • Someone to Remember Him By: Paul Gray's wife was a few months pregnant with his child. You can tear up now.
  • Special Guest: They make an appearance in the 2002 remake of Rollerball and are playable characters in Infected. This is a game about mowing down hordes of zombies. As Slipknot.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": While he doesn't seem to be bothered too much by it, Mick's last name is spelled "Thomson", not "Thompson" with a P or any variations thereof.
  • Spikes of Villainy: ...sort of. All of Jones' masks have had long spikes as part of their theme.
  • Stage Names: Each member has several.
  • This Song Goes Out To TV Tropes: Taylor loves this.
  • Updated Re-release: Slipknot has been released five times (six if you count the demo version).
    • The basic edition released in 1999
      • The Digipak special edition accompanying it (contains two bonus tracks and two demos). The hidden track "Eeyore" originally appeared after the final song "Scissors", while this version contains "Eeyore" after the final bonus track "Despise" (this version of "Scissors" is edited to include only the basic song).
    • The reissue months later after the copyright controversy concerning the song "Purity" (the lyrics were inspired by a copyrighted story which Taylor thought was true).
      • The Digipak special edition accompanying this version. Excludes "Purity" and the sample drama "Frail Limb Nursery" accompanying the removed track. This version includes "Get This", a faster version of "Spit It Out", and a version of "Wait and Bleed" mixed by producer Terry Date, along with a live performance of "Surfacing" as the final track. "Eeyore" is once again moved to a different track ("Surfacing" live) in order to appear at the very end of the album (appears after "Porn and Weed", which itself appears after "Surfacing" Live, making for three hidden tracks in a single track).
    • The 10th Anniversary Edition is effectively the definitive edition. It contains nearly every song mention above, including "Purity" ("Frail Limb Nursery" was not included, possibly because there literally wasn't enough room for it on the CD); "Eeyore" is finally made into a separate track (placed in the middle of the album). This edition contains "Snap" (a song only released on the demo version), three new remixes for "Wait and Bleed", "Surfacing" and "(sic)", and a live DVD.
      • To the point, a true 'Maggot' has bought this album three times: Original (contains "Frail Limb Nursery"), the reissue bonus edition (contains "Surfacing" live and "Porn and Weed") and the 10th Anniversary Edition (contains everything). Word to the wise, go download it instead.
  • You Are Number 6: Subverted. While they do use the numbers as monikers, every fan knows the members' names and they're not really secretive about it.

Their music provides examples of:

  • Album Title Drop: Twice in All Hope is Gone, both for the title track and during the opening track ".Execute."
  • Angrish: Not a completely straight example, but the sheer rage present in some of the songs can cause Taylor to mumble or become incomprehensible. Can overlap with Careful with That Axe.
  • Anti-Love Song: "Snuff" from All Hope Is Gone.
  • Based on a True Story: "Purity", or so Taylor thought. (The story turned out to be a hoax.)
  • Broken Record: Bridge of "Get This".
  • Cluster F-Bomb: Slipknot and Iowa are rife with cursing; The Gray Chapter has a lot but is not quite as bad as the former two (with the exception of "Custer"). In contrast, All Hope is Gone had just enough to earn a Parental Advisory label, and The Subliminal Verses was almost curse-free due to Taylor getting tired of claims that he couldn't write lyrics without profanities.
  • Darker and Edgier: Iowa is this compared to their self-titled debut album, which in itself is already darker and edgier than most nu metal albums.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Sid went through one while recording Iowa after hearing of his grandfather's (to whom Sid was very close) death, as evidenced by the song "(515)", when Shawn let him into the booth and just told him to let it out when Sid told him, which leads to some pretty disturbing screaming and yelling, sounding almost demonic.
  • Everything Is an Instrument: Crahan + baseball bat + beer keg = instant percussion. Also, in one scene in the 10th anniversary DVD, Crahan is shown walking down a hallway dropping a metal pipe on the floor in a rhythmic pattern.
  • Evil Laugh: ...near the end of "[sic]".
  • Grief Song: "Skeptic" and "Goodbye" are dedicated to Gray.
    The world will never see another crazy motherfucker like you
    The world will never know another man as amazing as you
    • A lot of the other songs on .5, just more subtle.
    So the last thing on Earth I am ready to do is say... Goodbye
  • Harsh Vocals: Taylor is all over the map on this, going from true Metal Screams to more guttural growls and everything in between.
  • Heavy Mithril: Occasionally.
  • Hidden Track:
    • Mate. Feed. Kill. Repeat. has "Dogfish Rising" playing after "Killers Are Quiet".
    • Their self-titled album has a band conversation and "Eeyore" playing after "Scissors".
  • "I Am" Song: "Eeyore"
  • Last Note Nightmare
  • Loudness War: The Subliminal Verses.
  • Lyrical Tic: Corey Taylor is quite fond of muttering "huh..." or grunting between lyrics or at the beginning of a verse (i.e. "huh...WE WILL BURN YOUR CITIES DOWN!") He also tended in earlier albums to pant heavily into the mic from the force of screaming so harshly. This can be heard in songs such as "Eyeless" and the outro of "The Blister Exists."
  • Metal Scream: Corey Taylor uses all four types, with type 1 being the most common.
  • Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: Most songs are at least 7, with their harder songs creeping to 8-9 and softer ones a 5-6. Live performances of their heavier songs can get up to a 10. Iowa is their hardest album overall, with the majority of the songs being a hard 9-soft 10.
  • Murder Ballad: "Iowa", a Serial Killer's ode to his first victim.
  • New Sound Album: From Vol. 3: The Subliminal Verses onward, they began to use more traditional and melodic metal song structures (including several acoustic ballads), began to incorporate guitar solos and did not rely on electronics as heavily. That said, The Gray Chapter amps up the electronic and scratch work, although not back to pre-Vol. 3 levels.
  • Non-Appearing Title A large portion of their songs are this.
  • Number of the Beast: "The Heretic Anthem" starts with an electronic voice counting "8, 7, 6, 6, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, 0...", then continues throughout the chorus.
    If you're 555 then I'm 666!
  • Obsession Song: Both versions of "Vermilion", although more so the first. Also: "The Nameless", "Iowa", "The Virus Of Life" as well, in a somewhat...rape-ier kind of way. Not to mention "Gehenna" on All Hope is Gone, as well as "Prothestics" on the self-titled album. Corey enjoys writing about obsession.
  • ''Psycho'' Strings
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: Taylor likes to do this a lot.
  • Pure Is Not Good: "Purity"
  • Purple Prose/Meaningless Meaningful Words: Throughout the band's body of work, you'll sometimes find unusual lyrical choices placed awkwardly in the middle of a song otherwise made up of simpler language, almost as if Corey Taylor skimmed through a dictionary, found a word he liked and decided to incorporate it into the song somehow.
    • Taylor acknowledges and confronts this in the Stone Sour song, "Freeze Dry Seal", admitting that while he may not be a flowery poet, that doesn't make his lyrics (and his beliefs) any less real. Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped at its best.
  • Rap Rock: Despite Cory Taylor's perchance for talk-singing, only "Spit It Out" has him outright rapping.
  • Soprano and Gravel: Taylor switches between clean singing and hardcore shouting à la Phil Anselmo in most songs.
  • Spoken Word in Music: To the point that they're often inaccurately lumped into the "rapcore" genre.
  • Surprisingly Gentle Song: Obsession Song or not, "Vermillion Pt. 2" is a very slow and gentle track that those more familiar with the band's nu-metal side and aggressive reputation would not have expected.note  Also, "Circle" and "Snuff".
  • The Something Song The Heretic Anthem.

Their music videos provide examples of:

  • Animated Music Video: One of the two versions of "Wait and Bleed", in a stop.
  • The Cameo: Malcolm McDowell as the desk clerk in "Snuff".
  • Crossdresser: The Reveal in "Snuff" - Taylor's character is dressed like his former lover.
  • Forced Perspective: The video for "Dead Memories" uses this to make the already-huge Thomson Hagrid-sized against Taylor.
  • Journey to the Center of the Mind: One possible interpretation of the video for "Dead Memories"; it could also be a Disney Acid Sequence, but with less Disney and more acid.
  • Peaceful in Death: The insane woman from the "Vermilion" video is shown sleeping peacefully in a field in the "Vermilion, Part 2" video until she begins floating and her eyes reveal that she's dead, finally free from her miserable life.
  • Performance Video:
    • The live version of "Wait and Bleed" and the live scenes in "Spit It Out" use concert footage. "The Blister Exists", "Left Behind", "Duality", "Before I Forget", "Psychosocial", and "Sulfur" are more traditional "band plays the song while other stuff's happening" videos.
  • Shout-Out: The "Spit It Out" video has the band members recreate several scenes from The Shining, intermixed with the live footage.
  • Trash the Set: "Duality" has the band playing the song to a few dozen fans who seriously vandalize the house they're all in. The house belonged to a fan and needed drastic remodeling anyway, so they were allowed to be as aggressive with it as possible. They ended up doing even more damage than was expected, forcing the label to pay compensation.
  • The Unreveal: "Before I Forget"; the band is in street clothes and unmasked, but you never see their full faces, be it due to close-ups or being blurred by not being the focus of the shot.