390 of 1001 Albums: Slipknot’s All Hope is Gone

I think Slipknot can take the award for bleakest album title I’ve seen so far. All Hope is Gone instantly sets the stage though for an album that is rather depressing, and considering their bass player died only a couple of years after the album was released it makes the album just that much more bleak. There are some good guitar ballads, and even a nicely arranged song in “Snuff”, but the hopelessness of this album is a bit much to take, and it took me several days to listen to.

History: The fourth album from the band shows the bands feelings and disappointments it seems with many things. Like for example the music industry and personal anger and other feelings they were dealing with that made the themes of the album. With better reception from critics this time around the band opened with a lot of buzz for this album, and increased the talk with whether they would be returning with their trademark masks or not, but instead just picked new ones to wear.

Vocals: Corey Taylor’s vocals range from the growling sound that seems to have become the new thing to tie in to metal to something that does have real vocal talent with a very melodic voice.

Instrumentals: The guitar is very prominent and has a riff that is memorable, and then the drumming does a lot to create that heavy sound as well. Most of the album is very metal though. As someone who isn’t really a fan of hardcore music like this I didn’t find over half the album something that I am into listening to, plus the instrumentals and the vocals just have this very somber, sad tone that just isn’t very uplifting to hear. The tone is dark, and the fact that a tragic event did follow this album doesn’t help.

Recording: Overall, with the recording I think the theme of the dissatisfaction with the music industry resonates highly with what the band was struggling with while recording this album as they were trying to get it done in a certain way that was okay with them yet still having to battle with other people involved. This album was only recorded in 2008 though, so it stills sounds quite modern and relevant to people still listening to music.

Slipknot just isn’t my type of band, and there are lyrics that just are too questionable for me to even consider listening to songs that might be better on the album. You have songs like “Snuff” that do show a lot of instrumental and vocal talent. Taylor’s vocals really do work when he isn’t doing the growling bit. The themes of the album are too dark though, and I think people already struggle with enough as it is without throwing music on top of that that is just as depressing.

Rating 2 of 10.

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