Music Review: Slipknot – {sic}nesses: Live At Download (Eagle Rock Entertainment, Blu-ray)

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Slipknot {sic}nesses – Live at Download Blu-ray

When did I realize I’d become a square? Me, the lifelong devotee to the almighty RAWK? When I encountered music so ugly that I couldn’t find anything to appreciate it about it—despite a hearty endorsement from my son.

So much for being a cool dad. The ugly music I refer to is made by a band called Slipknot, a heavy metal band from Iowa that merges Texas Chainsaw Massacre-era grindhouse horror with some of the loudest, nastiest metal you’re likely to hear in this lifetime.

My latest exposure to the band was the opportunity to review {sic}nesses: Live At Download, a 2012 Blu-ray release of a concert previously only released on DVD in 2010. Filmed in 2009 at the Download Festival in England before about 120,000 metal maniacs, this Blu-ray is a prime example of Slipknot delivering just what the kids love—and what the parents (mostly) hate.

They work awfully hard at it. This is complex, speedy music that the band plays with precision and palpable energy. Whether you like their particular brand of music is determined by your personal taste, but there’s no arguing with the force of this performance.

Yes, they are scary looking, and yes, this is ugly music—fast, ferocious, screamed more than sung, with rarely a melody in earshot. But you can’t fault Slipknot’s conviction and power; just watch the crowd going nuts throughout this performance.

Actually, I found this Blu-ray pretty interesting—once I turned the sound way down. The evil clown look is pretty compelling, and there’s this guy playing a set of what look to be hybrids of steel drums and trashcans. There’s a lot to see here, and a lot of it is interesting, even if, like me, you don’t appreciate the music too much.

Although shot for DVD, this Blu-ray remaster is superb—sharp and precise. The sound mix is impressive too, delivering every ugly facet of this gut-wrenching music with good separation and plenty of (perhaps too much) oomph.

And you know what? My 21-year-old son loved it.

Buy Slipknot: (sic)nesses Blu-ray at Amazon
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