Review Summary: Easily the best release by a mediocre band that's crazed by emo kids. It's good in parts, but many of the songs still contain the elements that made them suck in the first place.
Slipknot. The name says it all. They're a mediocre band with a mediocre name. Nothing special has ever arisen from this band. Listening to their older material, it becomes obvious that they were only signed because they had their own originality... they were on a different level of stupidity when writing their music. Early Slipknot shows extreme, random riffs and drum fills that are executed by a 9 member band.
Slipknot fanboys are annoying in their own right, about just as annoying as Children Of Bodom fanboys or Metallica fanboys. However, a review is needed on their latest release, All Hope Is Gone, which is arguably their most mature release to date. The album contains many more listenable tracks, and a sudden turn to lightly less extreme music. It's surprising to see a band that released songs like The Faceless, a heap of trash with extreme and horrid turns of randomness, to release a song such as Snuff.
Snuff is surprisingly lighter turn in their music. It's actually a well composed piece that shows the softer side of Corey Taylor. And it's also arguably the best piece this band has ever written... and that's not saying much.
All opinions aside, reviewing an album that very few paid attention to upon it's release on August 20th, 2008 is a very difficult task to endure while withholding so much hatred towards the band that composed it.
The album starts off with an instrumental track called ".Execute." It's 1 minute and 50 seconds of feedback and random, simple drum fills. Nothing special, therefore it deserves a subsequent rating of 1 out of 5.
The next song is called Gematria (The Killing Name). This song starts off as nothing special. A bunch of drum fills, a little taste of blast beats and some mediocre guitar work. Then the song kicks in with a harmonic riff and Corey Taylor screaming his signature vocals. The first verse breakdown is fairly nice, and may even get someone finger to start tapping. The next verse is a basic repeat. However, the following riff to it is fairly nice. Maybe not to the metal elitist crowd, but it gets the job down. The song then drags on and on, and gets boring after the first 3 minutes. The solo is nothing to worry about, either. A measly 2 / 5
Sulfur starts of with a slow paced riff that reminds me of "Eat of the Dead" by Nile. Then it's followed up with some very nice double bass thanks to Joey Jordison. Fits nicely. The verse and chorus is very catchy, unlike ever song before Duality... and most after. The chorus is then followed by the very good intro. Overall, this song is definitely one of their best. Easily a 4 / 5.
Now you have the first single from the album, "Psychosocial". While the lyrics make no sense whatsoever, the intro is fantastic. Very catchy indeed. Then it gets followed up by a heavy riff with an intense backbeat. Afterwards you have the chorus.. which is simply great. Gotta love the clean vocals from this band, as Corey does have a very nice clean voice. Suits the chorus greatly. The solo is definitely the best they have ever done. Starts off very fast and gets a nice melody at the end. The breakdown is rather stupid, but it's heavy and it gets the job done. Would be much nicer with louder snare hits, and no stupid chanting vocals. Otherwise, this is a great song and definitely takes a nice dump on the rest of their music. 5 out of 5.
Dead Memories has a nice intro... very melancholy and light. Doesn't fit well after the heavy Psychosocial, but it's good. The verse's are clean but not bad. It picks up a little bit with the prechorus. The guitar work is nothing to like, but it's followed up by another fantastic chorus. The following up verse looses some of it's umph, but flows into the chorus very nicely. Much better musicianship on this album so far, in comparison to their older works. The solo is rather horrible, and the clean part afterwards isn't anything special. But it kicks into the good chorus, and sounds nicely once you forget about it. The outro solo is very good. Overall, it's average but for them, it's good. Very mainstream, but it's a 4 / 5
Vendetta reminds me very much of their old stuff, just a bit more organized. It's still a rather tedious listen, and contains some annoying chants in places. This song has nothing that catchy in it and sounds pretty boring in parts. It's just a 1.5 / 5
Butcher's Hook is a really angry, aggressive song that gets very repetitive. It's all over the place, quite a mess, and the chorus is just plain stupid. Chants from Corey Taylor and then clean vocals from him equals bad. Terrible solo and the entire song is basically just the first few minutes repeated. 1 / 5
Gehanna is a song about only God knows what... and the verse is downright terrible. It's like Sci-Fi mixed with voodoo. It's just... bad. This song is only a very slow paced song that drags on and on and makes you want to poke your eye out with a shiv. On the contrary, the solo is actually pretty good... except it drags on and on like the rest of the song. Nothing aggressive about this song, which is downright retarded when you have it right after the most vulgar song on the album. 1 / 5
This Cold Black has a very atrocious intro, but the following riff is fairly nice. The verses are very aggressive and heavy, which makes up for the past few songs. The second verse is the only exception, being rather empty in spots. The chorus is just annoying, sounds like Corey is screaming into a microphone with tons of feedback. The solo is hard to hear, which is a good thing because it's short and is nothing special. 2.5 / 5
Wherein Lies Continue is all over the place. Sounds like Slipknot was trying to be heavy and soft at the sam time. An overly palm muted riff with heavy sounding drums doesn't mix well at all. At this point in the album, the band really needs a song to pick it up. Sadly, this song isn't it. 1 / 5
Now you have Snuff.. it's a wonderful, melancholy piece that's about a love lost. Very emotional and brings up feelings in those who have lost someone special to them. Great song, one of the highlights on this album. 5 / 5
All Hope Is Gone, the title track, starts off very heavy and is possibly mosh worthy. But then it kicks into a verse that's way too fast... the drums are practically overlapping each other, that's how fast it is. It sounds like absolute garbage, and that's it. 1 / 5
Child of Burning Time... this song is what makes most people hate the band in the first place. It's just terrible. Clean vocals over palm muted riffs... overly slow chorus with no catch.... this song is all over the place. 1 / 5
Vermillion Pt 2 [Bloodstone Mix], this song is garbage. Not even worth a review. It may please all the little emo kiddies out there, but definitely not anyone who likes metal. The original Vermillion Pt 2 was very good, but this is far from that. 1 / 5
'Til We Die is just an absolute heap of rancid fecal matter. Every second of this song makes me want to facepalm. 1 / 5
The first few songs, intro excluded, are great songs each in their own way. However, it can't be Slipknot without the terrible songwriting, and that comes out in the end of the album. This is easily one of the worst albums of all time, and if it weren't for Psychosocial, Sulfur, and Dead Memories, this would definitely be a god awful album.
If you respect metal at all, do not buy this album. Just get the few good songs for free off of some second rate torrent site, the rest of the album is BAD.