To long time fans, Slipknot may not seem as mysterious and frightening now, especially since we’ve seen them without their masks, but when they first hit the scene in 1999 they were the creepiest thing around. The fact that they made intense music and we never even knew what they looked like added to the creepy factor. Their first home video may not have held up over time, but when it was first released it was the most exciting thing a maggot could ask for, especially if they wanted to learn more about the infamous nine.
If anything the video acts as an introduction to the band. This is the type of video you would hand over to anyone who says “Who is Slipknot?” It begins with a live performance of “Surfacing,” which shows off their raw passion and energy on stage. Granted, there are better Slipknot performances out there, but this clip along with several other live footage sprinkled throughout the video gives you a good idea of what the band is like live: destructive, crazy, and chaotic. Also, this footage was a god send if you never had the chance to see the band live, I guess it still is if you still haven’t seen them live. But rather than fill the video with random live footage, there are other clips that are spliced throughout that keeps the video moving.
There are small interviews with each band member that pretty much give you their name and their role in the band. They also answer questions about the beginning of the band, why they wear the masks, and their hometown. What’s interesting about these parts is that the editing department does its best to keep the band as mysterious as possible. Not only are they answering the questions in their masks, there’s a blurred effect over the camera that prevents you from seeing them clearly. This makes it pretty clear that they wanted to remain an enigma as long as they could, at least when they first started. Another thing I like about these clips is it shows how soft spoken Corey Taylor is. Fans know his lighter side now, but back then it was a shock to hear someone who screamed his lungs out speak so softly.
Aside from the uncut version of their “Spit It Out” video, which takes influence from The Shining, there’s not much else to the video. When it was re-released in 2003, they added an additional ten minutes of random fan footage mainly from their live shows that further prove how insane their shows can get. There’s also some parts where it looks like they were making a music video with the guys standing out in a field and causing destruction to some innocent barrels. But my favorite part of the footage is Corey Taylor signing an autograph for an excited fan. It’s so simple, but it shows how dedicated the band was to their fans even when they first started. This behind the scenes footage is interesting to see once, but there aren’t any memorable moments that makes you want to watch it again.
Overall, the video gets 7/10. In 1999 this video was killer, especially if you were just getting into the band, but it hasn’t really held up over time, especially since Slipknot have released better documentaries since then. But if you’re a Slipknot collector or just want to be taken back to that magical year when they first hit it big then it’s worth getting, but only if you can find it for cheap. If you just want to experience it for yourself you can find the entire DVD version on Youtube, but whose to say how long it will be up there.