Ever since Paul Gray’s death in 2010 the members of Slipknot went back and forth between ending the band and continuing in Gray’s memory. Well, it seems like they’ve picked the latter option. This collection may not have any new material, but it’s filled with some of the best Slipknot songs from all of the band’s albums. Plus, there’s a live disc that has their set from Download Festival 2009 and a DVD with every single one of their music videos. This isn’t your ordinary greatest hits collection. It’s something new and old fans will love.
The first disc is filled with 19 songs that span the band’s career. It has the singles from all of their albums to date. Some of their best tracks are here: “Wait and Bleed,” “Duality,” “Heretic Anthem,” “Left Behind” among others. This disc is impressive enough on it’s own, but it’s easy to understand why long time fans wouldn’t be eager to get it right away. They most likely have all of their albums and would only get this if they were an avid Slipknot collector. But the band makes sure their fans get their money’s worth with two additional discs.
The second disc is the band’s live set from Download Festival 2009. I was a bit iffy about this disc because I wasn’t impressed with Slipknot’s first live album 9.0 Live. Sometimes they didn’t sound very good when performing and when they did sound good it was too much like the original recording for me to care. Also, Slipknot is a visual band. You need to see them go crazy on stage to understand why people love seeing them live, so I wasn’t expecting much with this new live disc.
The first three songs start out like I expected: the music sounded excellent, but Corey sounded exhausted and out of breath. But midway through the disc the songs get better. You can hear the energy, craziness, and passion from the whole band. And when the crowd begins singing along it makes you realize the magnitude of this band. It’s pretty amazing. I actually think this live collection is better than their initial one. It also doesn’t hurt that the set list is awesome with at least one song from every one of their albums. My personal favorite songs from this disc are “Dead Memories,” “The Blister Exists,” and “Spit it Out.”
The final disc has all of the band’s videos, including alternate and live versions. This is what makes the collection tempting for me. It’s great to have all their videos in one place, especially alternate versions like the animated video for“Wait and Bleed.” Often times, artists don’t include different versions of their videos on their collections, so when Slipknot said every one of their videos is on the disc they meant it. It serves as a great visual evolution of the band.
Along with their music videos, the disc also includes ten bonus videos directed by Shawn “Clown” Crahan. What’s cool about these videos is that there’s one for each member. The videos are complied of live and candid footage of each member while spastic remixes of their singles play in the background. The final video is footage of all the members together playing live and just hanging out. It’s really cool and reminds me of the mini interviews for each member from Voliminal: Inside the Nine. It’s a nice bonus to an already great collection.
Overall, the collection gets 9/10. Not only do you get all of Slipknot’s singles from their first album to their most current on one disc, you get two bonus discs to sweeten the deal. The energetic, insane and passionate live disc along with all of Slipknot’s creepy and bleak videos makes this a collection that’s worth getting. You can tell the band really put effort into this release. It wasn’t something they slapped together to get some more money or to let fans know they’re not dead.