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Slipknot Release Surprise EP as Longtime Keyboardist Craig Jones Exits Band

‘Adderall’ release features alternate versions of the track that opened last year’s ‘The End, So Far’ album


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Slipknot titled their most recent album, The End, So Far, and now it’s becoming clearer how they’re prolonging the apocalypse. On their newly released Adderall EP, they’ve collected three alternate versions of the moody title track (which led off The End, So Far), along with three previously unreleased songs: “Death March,” “Red or Redder,” and “Hard to Be here.”

“Deconstructing to continuously pave the way for evolution,” percussionist Shawn “Clown” Crahan said elliptically in a statement. “At this point in the program nothing is safe.”

Crahan also directed two new videos, “Memories (Adderall – Rough Demo)” and “Death March.” (These follow the release of a video, “Yen – Director’s Cut [Bone Church],” a few months back.) The “Memories” clip focuses on frontman Corey Taylor, wearing a two-sided Grecian drama mask that plays off his usual Crash Test Dummy look (with a psychedelic George Clinton-esque wig to match), as well as some of the band’s other members. The music for this version of the song sounds new-wavey and emotional, adding depth to druggy imagery.

Last year, in an interview with Rolling Stone about relaunching the Famous Monsters brand, frontman Corey Taylor described his inspiration for “Adderall” when the magazine compared the song to something by Radiohead. “Everybody’s comparing it to Radiohead and stuff like that, and I’m like, ‘All right, I don’t listen to Radiohead, so that’s interesting,’” he said. “To me, I was kind of leaning into my inner David Gahan. I’m a massive Depeche Mode fan. That was just me kind of doing my impression of that, but I’ll take Radiohead as well.”

Another video, for the instrumental “Death March,” features similarly unsettling imagery, lifelike dummies of the band members with plastic covering their heads as if they’d been murdered or died by suicide like something out of a snuff film. Only the mannequin marked “Clown” has his face uncovered. Ambient piano and synth soundtrack the imagery, which cuts to a shot of all nine mannequins in tuxes in a plastic-lined room. Then each member meets a fate similar to that of the Romanovs in 1918.

Interestingly, the release arrives at a time when only seven of the members who recorded The End, So Far are touring in support of it. Earlier this week, Crahan released a statement saying he would not join the group on its European tour as he had to care for his ailing wife.

Then the band posted a statement saying that Pinhead-masked keyboardist-sampler Craig Jones, who had joined the nonet in 1996, was no longer a member. “To our fans, Slipknot is announcing that we have parted ways with Craig Jones,” the group wrote on Instagram, according to Revolver. “We wish Jones all the best for the future.” The message was up only shortly before it disappeared. A musician whose identity has not yet been revealed joined the band for its current tour, according to Blabbermouth. Neither the band nor Jones have released any further comment on the split.

The band will return to the U.S. this summer for appearances at Rock Fest 2023 in Wisconsin, Inkcarceration Festival in Ohio, and Blue Ridge Rock Festival in Virginia.

Meanwhile, Taylor is gearing up to release another solo album, CMF2, on Sept. 15. He released a video for “Beyond,” in which he confronts people wearing Taylor’s Slipknot masks from throughout his career with the band in an apocalyptic setting. He’ll be touring in support of the album from Aug. to Oct.

Adderall EP track list:

1. “Death March”
2. “Adderall” – No Intro
3. “Adderall” – Rough Demo
4. “Red or Redder”
5. “Adderall” – Instrumental
6. “Hard to Be Here”

From Rolling Stone US