Slipknot
All Hope Is Gone


2.0
poor

Review

by Tyler Munro EMERITUS
August 27th, 2008 | 1267 replies | 75,040 views


Release Date: 2008 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Slipknot tries to go back to their roots while pulling as far away from them as possible. It is not entirely successful.

What happens when a band carves itself deeply in the womb of a passing fad? What happens when a band who has always fit inside of a niche tries to evolve beyond the trend yet still remain faithful to their established sound? Slipknot's All Hope is Gone happens. To put it plainly, the album is greatly evincive of an identity crisis. In an interview with ArtistDirect¹, founding bassist Paul Gray remains seemingly sure of himself as both a metalhead and a metal musician. In the interview, Gray constantly reminds the reader that he saw Iron Maiden in 1984 and that at age 36, he's comfortable with himself, his music and his legitimacy--what ever that means. And yet when Gray opens up and rants, "I'm not going to be told by some teenybopper motherfucker that we're 'Mall metal'," there's a palpable sense of worry and uncertainty in his words. No matter how many times he tries to hide it ("we're playing in front of 20,000 people every night. Slipknot's bigger than ever"), Gray--and Slipknot as a whole---is ultimately still looking to be accepted. And it shows; All Hope is Gone comes off like a band testing the waters of what works and what doesn't; it comes off like a band attempting to prove themselves unexemplary of a long-dead fad; moreover, it comes off like a band so unsure of what they need to do to be accepted that they ultimately decide to do as much as they can. Sadly, it doesn't work.

In keeping with Shawn Crahan's repertoire of goofy, Bungle-esque clown masks, All Hope is Gone is a veritable loot bag of metal stylings. But as it so typically goes with loot bags, there is something for everyone but it's ultimately just a bunch of random shit thrown together. Stick your hand in and you're first greeted with the nu-thrash stylings of "Gematria (The Killing Name)". Go in for seconds and you end up with the rhythmic, shape-shifting "Butcher's Hook". So it goes. Slipknot is now trying to grow up in hopes of re-uniting with their original core fanbase, and they're trying to do it while retaining enough of their original sound to let nostalgia play into the equation. It's a struggle; the band is pulling in two different directions -- back to their roots but as far from they as possible -- and they're tearing at the seams. As a result, the band abandons their DJ and Samplist almost entirely yet Corey Taylor is somehow as childishly pissed off as ever. It's hardly a fair trade-off.

All Hope is Gone is not a bad album. Instead it's an overly varied collection of songs that don't fit together. It's not just a bit of Iowa with a pinch of Stone Sour; it's all that plus some Lamb of God, some Meshuggah and even a dab of Kreator. It's so varied and stylistically self-conflicted that it ends up being mixtape fodder more than anything. Beyond that, it fails to remain with one idea long enough to make the listener care. Regardless of whether it's concerning the variety of styles or the general lack of hooks, All Hope is Gone isn't an album you'll want to listen to a lot. Very few of the riffs stick with you and as noted, the hooks just aren't there. While it's not without its obvious highlights, All Hope is Gone feels too much like a demo with professional production values to make me recommend it as an album. For maggots and the nostalgic only.

¹http://www.artistdirect.com/nad/news/article/0,,4758219,00.html



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Comments:Add a Comment 
Tyler
Emeritus
August 28th 2008



7928 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

Wrote this on my lunch break, lols. And yeah I just used a footnote in a review, what of it? Also, mx really needs to find a way to make dash's show up properly. Apparently I use those a lot

Crysis
Staff Reviewer
August 28th 2008



16264 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Good review, I know I'm enjoying this a lot more than I should be.

Digging: Ulver - Bergtatt

Tyler
Emeritus
August 28th 2008



7928 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

I like it more than I let on but as an album it just doesn't really work.

Crysis
Staff Reviewer
August 28th 2008



16264 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I agree there, you have a song like ""Gematria (The Killing Name)" and then a song like "Gehenna", then something like "Snuff" rolls around and you wonder wtf is going on.

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
August 28th 2008



16081 Comments


Review was whatever I mean I didn't not like it or like it it just sort of exists there right?
I like this album though.

natey
August 28th 2008



4170 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

I nearly killed myself when I heard Corey on the radio saying "all these bands think their cutting edge today... we're hear to say you all lose".

AtavanHalen
August 28th 2008



17927 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great writing, Tyler. I really enjoyed reading this.
Slipknot really aren't for everyone, that's a given. I agree to an extent that Slipknot still want to be accepted.

Kage
August 28th 2008



1173 Comments


i use dashes a lot too and it's always annoyed me that they fuck up.

SHOOTME
August 28th 2008



2393 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

pretty good review, though i disagree.

Tyler
Emeritus
August 28th 2008



7928 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

Yeah I don't really like it either, I just put it there while I think of something better.

There, that'll do for now. This Message Edited On 08.27.08

AtavanHalen
August 28th 2008



17927 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Hey wow, this review is in the feature section exactly where mine was on Monday.
"I'm freaking out, man!"
EDIT: I take that back. The Jonas abides.This Message Edited On 08.27.08

keyboardxmosh
August 28th 2008



1007 Comments


yeah idk this just sounds really tired and yeah pretty well worded tyler omg super jenius please run for king of the jews

AngelPhoenix
August 28th 2008



2764 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Coke, you fuckin suck, why do you have to write good reviews WHY!?!?

Burn2Burn
August 28th 2008



2378 Comments


I don't really get why you think the songs are all so different and don't flow with one another.

nice brief review, however. basically touches on everything. rating is smelly though.

jingledeath
August 28th 2008



7104 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

i agree with burn2burn

badtaste
August 28th 2008



824 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I disagree with your talk about Slipknot "still looking to be accepted". I don't get that... accepted by who? I've been under the impression that no one takes the nu-metal genre too seriously at all, except by nu-metal fans themselves. Being a Slipknot fan, I've been accepting of Slipknot from MFKR to Iowa, and less so with the last two.

Otherwise, review was a bit short.This Message Edited On 08.28.08This Message Edited On 08.28.08

CrazyFool84
August 28th 2008



1080 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

Good review, it sums up the inbalance and chaotic nature of this record. The sad thing is, I think back to past records (even with a nod to Vol. 3) and find that much more acceptable than the nonsense they put forth here. The only thing I disagree on is that although I also don't think these songs fit together I do believe it's a bad album. Despite what the band has said to back it, I get a very rushed, desperate sense with this one.

Rustinpeace
August 28th 2008



7 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

i agree with the review, slipknot most inconsistant album to date, dissapointing intially but with more than a few thorough listens it has potential for appreciation..... standout tracks imo gamatria,gehena,wherein lies continue & psychosocialThis Message Edited On 08.28.08

poopty
August 28th 2008



319 Comments


you're all fucked and overrated and I think I'm gonna be sick

fireaboveicebelow
August 28th 2008



6837 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

is this the end of everything jeremiah?



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