SLIPKNOT ILLUMINATE THE INSPIRED MADNESS OF 'IOWA,' THEIR FORTHCOMING ALBUM, DUE OUT SUMMER 2001 ON ROADRUNNER RECORDS Iowa calling. “We're able to cut into the wound, crawl inside, stitch it up ourselves and fester in the fucking hurt,” says #6 (Shawn Crahan, percussionist) on the phone from Des Moines when asked to describe the much-anticipated forthcoming album by the mighty SLIPKNOT, due out mid-summer on Roadrunner Records. Titled IOWA, it marks the follow-up to the nine-piece group's self-titled Roadrunner debut, which sold two-and-a-half million copies worldwide, including million-plus-selling sales in the U.S., thus becoming the first-ever platinum album on Roadrunner. Along the way, the SLIPKNOT disc--with its do-or-die tracks “Wait and Bleed,” “Spit It Out” and “Surfacing”--created a seismic shift in the hard rock landscape from which music fans are still trying to recover. As SLIPKNOT promised in an Alternative Press cover story in the year 2000, “it's gonna get sicker.” Exactly how sick? #6: “I feel the last album was us expressing ourselves by painting several different pictures. But the paint didn't really dip in and out of black and white. Now, it's strictly black and white, and the black is the blackest of black. And it hurts.” Creating a sound that is not only unrelenting but draining, the masked musicians rejoined forces with producer Ross Robinson to co-produce IOWA, which is saturated with screams, drums, searing riffs, sampling, scratches and melody. “The album is a pivotal part of us: where we're going and where we're going to take all of you,” says #6. “By accepting it again, you have to be careful what you wish for.” He continues, “The musicality is the first and foremost thing people look for in Slipknot and I don't think they're going to be let down with that, but I think violently and exhaustingly people are going to be taken to a different level than they've ever experienced.” On IOWA, SLIPKNOT--DJ SID WILSON, drummer JOEY JORDISON, bassist PAUL GRAY, percussionist CHRIS FEHN, guitarist JAMES ROOT, sampler CRAIG JONES, percussionist SHAWN CRAHAN, guitarist MICK THOMSON and lead singer COREY TAYLOR (also known as 012345678, respectively)--drive a stake into the heart of societal complacency with unforgettable tracks like “People=Shit” and “Heretic.” Why do people=shit? #6: “Besides all of us just being a bunch of spores and living in our pathetic little ecosystems, I as a fellow human am just tired of watching the majority of humans make mistakes. I'm done with it, I've had it. We are what we are, we just waste and we ruin and we corrupt and we destroy. To me, that's just waste, that's shit. Fuck people.” What about “Heretic,” a defiant song about non-conformity? #6: “I didn't actually write the lyrics, but I can tell you what I'm feeling about it. My personal vibe on it is, 'if you want me to be something, I'm not going to be anything you want me to be. I'm gonna be what I am—there's no changing it and no denying it and if you try to change it, well…you know what happens'.” The inspiration for these songs? #6: “Everything we write about and everything we do is what we're experiencing. It's the world around us, it's not make-believe. It's weird situations that have happened to us, it's corners people have pushed us into.” Why did SLIPKNOT title the album IOWA? #6: “Basically, I feel the one question we're continuously asked is, 'Why Des Moines, Iowa?' And I would always look at the people and think, 'Are you ignorant. Did your boss write you that question?' My whole thing is, 'Why not Iowa?' Bottom line is, what we are doing is so true and the path we are on is the path that was laid before us to go down. Why not just keep it as simple and as true as possible? We're from Iowa and everyone seems to have a problem with us being from Iowa. They think there's something in the water and that maybe the woods are a little bit scarier. The bottom line is: this is where I live. This is where I'm from. When I run from tornadoes, it's because of the experience of tornadoes in Iowa. When I look down upon cities that have nothing going for them, it's because I'm from here. So the band felt obligated to show and maybe offer a little bit of it.” In true SLIPKNOT style, things got completely intense in the Los Angeles studio (Sound City) where the group were holed up for two-and-a-half months. #6: “We tracked a song called 'Iowa' and that was beautiful because we got the whole band in one little room and what's funny is the world thinks we need a lot of space, but this band has always been full of pleasure because of the uncomfortableness, the togetherness, being forced to be up close and in close. It's become our magic and we tracked this song 'Iowa' in a small room and we were even able to get the techs, plus Ross and Mike Frasier into this room and we turned the lights off and we one-taked it. No one did anything, aside from the normal, small engineering tweaking that had to take place. It was a one-take and was just purely spiritual and that is something that we've always had in us. We can get into a vibe and cut all the industry, the formula, the equation, all this fuckin' shit people tell us we have to do. That was one of the most powerful band experiences I had recording the album.” “Powerful” is a word used to describe the SLIPKNOT live show. In fact, NME, Britain's most popular music weekly, wrote: “They are, in short, the most utterly fucking intense rock band the world has seen since Rollins-era Black Flag—period.” This summer music fans will experience SLIPKNOT live when they perform on the mainstage of Ozzfest, which runs from June 8 in Chicago to August 12 in New York. What's it like to perform on a sweltering summer day in heavy masks? #6: “I'm given the chance to speak out and instruct kids on the way I feel. They chose to put me on that stage. They chose to sell-out my shows. They chose to give me this privilege. I feel that by giving everything—the masks, the coveralls, the heat stroke, the exhaustion, the lack of oxygen—I feel like I earned the respect in their eyes, because they are what it's all about. Without the maggots, it's over, bud. If you ever watch maggots, most people could not sit by a dead carcass and stare at a society of maggots eating away at a dead deer, but you know what? It's funny how from death comes life. Maggots are very, very important.” What kind of legacy are SLIPKNOT looking to leave us? #6: “I try to think about the future. I try to think, 'When I'm dead what am I going to leave behind? Am I leaving anything worth a shit for anyone to follow?' I look at Van Gogh and Cezanne paintings all the time and they've been gone for what seems like forever. Yet, their techniques, their concepts, their brushstrokes are all so important on how things are done today artistically. I hope, because of Slipknot, everybody opens up and just fuckin' cuts into it, cuts it out, just says 'Fuck it. Fuck this world.' Let's destroy the formula. Let's not even let the ink come out of the pen to fuckin' remind ourselves that we're doing what they taught.”