SLIPKNOT’s music video for “XIX”, the opening track from the band’s 2014 album, “.5: The Gray Chapter”, can be seen below.
SLIPKNOT percussionist Shawn Crahan constructed the song as a three-minute eulogy for the band’s founding bassist Paul Gray, who died in May 2010 of an accidental overdose of morphine and the painkiller fentanyl. Crahan spoke the song’s opening words, “This song is not for the living; this song is for the dead.” But it’s the lyrics that frontman Corey Taylor wrote that drove him to tears: “Walk with me, just like we should have done right from the start…. Walk with me, don’t let this fucking world tear you apart.”
“I don’t usually let people see me cry,” Crahan told Rolling Stone magazine. “It’s too hard. But when I heard what Corey Taylor sang on the song ‘XIX’, I cried and cried and cried. It hurt so bad.”
Taylor explained the song’s title to Kerrang!: “It’s pronounced ‘XX’, but it’s supposed to represent a couple of different things,” he said. “It’s the 19th year of the band’s existence, and it’s also a metaphor for stage two, because track one on the ‘Iowa’ album was ‘515’, and this is ‘XIX’, So in Roman numerals it’s almost like a double of that. So it represents a new start, and seeing where the road leads to.”
Taylor added: “Lyrically, it’s really about getting back up on your feet after getting smashed in the mouth, basically. It’s just kind of the start of, you know, what would become to me the second stage of the band’s career.”
Corey told Kerrang!: “What you hear on the record is what we did on the very first demo. It’s all me, all raw, in one take, the first time we recorded it.”
The last single released from “The Gray Chapter” was called “Killpop”.
SLIPKNOT’s “Summer’s Last Stand” tour kicked off on July 24 in West Palm Beach, Florida, and wrapped on September 5 in Dallas.