Kalle Aalto of Imhotep webzine recently conducted an interview with STONE SOUR/SLIPKNOT frontman Corey Taylor. A few excerpts from the chat follow:
Imhotep: Did the success of STONE SOUR surprise you?
Corey: "It definitely took as by surprise, as we were expecting a success similar to the level of a debut album. As an artist, you're kinda afraid to hope for too much, but you definitely want that, but you're afraid to put your eggs on the basket. So when everybody responded to the album, we were like, 'Holy fucking shit, that's great man,' but then it just got bigger and bigger and we were like, 'All right'… It was very refreshing, we always had a problem with our debut album, because we always thought we could've made that album a lot better. There were so many things we left, and there were so many things that felt half-assed with that album. It always bugged us. We were proud of what we did at the time, but that's why we took so many steps to make sure that album was above and beyond the first album. We kinda said, 'Fuck it,' and went for broke. We weren't gonna hold it back this time. If you don't do that, then fuck it, you know, fortune favors the bold."
Imhotep: Do you have enough time for both bands?
Corey: "It's all on your priorities, I've always said that if you prioritize everything, you'll have time to do everything. And now my priority is STONE SOUR. Now we've toured for almost a year already and are still gonna do so until October. But we wanna get it all in now, because last time we could only tour for nine months. We played Europe twice and America twice, so there were a lot of things we didn't get to do with that album. We are gonna go wherever we didn't get to go, and we're gonna do everything we want to do, and damn the consequences. I also let the other members of SLIPKNOT know that, before we left off with that band. But I've got a lot of support about that in SLIPKNOT, which is really cool, and vice versa, the guys in STONE SOUR know that SLIPKNOT is a priority for me as well. I take my time and do both and make sure it is what I want to do and not what I have to do."
Imhotep: What if you had to choose between these two bands?
Corey: "I wouldn't. If somebody made me choose, I would walk away from both, let's put it that way. Or just do my own thing. It is my choice to do both, and it is like picking your favorite kid, you just cannot do it. It's not fair, music will always be a part of my life, no matter what. It doesn't matter if I'm playing acoustic at a corner bar or to a sold out audience in Finland, I will always do my best. So nobody's forcing me to do anything, because at the end of the day I am gonna do music regardless who I am with. Regardless who I am with, I will make music. That's it."
Imhotep: Apparently you get to write more music in STONE SOUR than in SLIPKNOT.
Corey: "Lot of times yeah. Lot of times in SLIPKNOT that core of writing was already in place, I came in with lyrics and I've thrown a couple of riffs here and there, and I've helped out with some choruses and all that, but like musically. But with writing music, this band (STONE SOUR) is a venue where I can display what I am able. 'Through Glass' I wrote, 'Zzyx Red' I wrote, the majority of 'Made Of Scars', so it's really where I get to shine as a composer, shine as a writer. It is important for me. In SLIPKNOT I know that everyone in that band is so gifted, that I don't have to compete when it comes to that, but with this band it is a completely different thing, we all kinda write full songs and then bring them to the collective, and then it all kinda comes to what it is. But I feel to be more in the band with STONE SOUR."
Imhotep: Does it irritate you that SLIPKNOT is always mentioned in connection with STONE SOUR?
Corey: "It used to, to be honest, but it is kinda my fault, because I helped build that band to where it was, so at the end of the day, the only person I can blame is myself. I kinda look at it like the superhero syndrome, the one person being jealous about the alter ego. But I can't do it, I used to kinda get upset about it but then I noticed when I was doing SLIPKNOT, I got a lot of STONE SOUR questions, so the way I look at it is that it's very symbiotic. Right now, I can't have one without the other."
Imhotep: What does music actually mean to you?
Corey: "Music, to me, is so many different things. On a bad day it is a vehicle to vent, on a good day it is a form of communication, and all the days in between it is enjoyment. But for me it is important never to forget what it feels like to be a music fan. And that's an important thing. Lot of people get into this business, achieve a level of success, and they basically forget why they loved music in the first place. They become very atypical, they become very egotistical, but for me it has always been more about the music to begin with. The fame can go away, the money is very very very temporary, the chicks are the fucking bullshit, the music is the thing that lasts a really long time, and that's the thing I've never forgotten. It has always been more about the legacy, than about the immediacy. I wanna leave something behind, something that people remember. There are so many temporary bands today that are such fucking bullshit. Not enough people want to make something astounding, not enough people want to go for the extraordinary, and that's what fucking bothers me. But it also pushes me about music, and at the end of the day, music is always going to be the thing that saved my life, music is the thing that has made my life chaotic, I definitely don't get a lot of sleep, but what are you gonna do. Music is so fluid, it is so many things wrapped up as one."
Read the entire interview at Imhotep.