Without a doubt, Slipknot albums are responsible for creating a highly controversial but well-known band. Although most famous bands do figure out in some kind of controversy at one point or another, conflict and controversy seems to have actively followed the members of this group.
It was in 1995 when the group was officially formed with Shawn Crahan and Paul Gray taking the lead. From the onset, the group already showed signs of disarray that would later become part of their contentious history. Unlike other bands, this one has had a total of thirteen members with eight currently still considered members before their vague hiatus. With too many members playing, there was always the possibility of differences and individuality looming to disrupt the internal harmony.
Early on, the band was said to have played such complicated sounds that what they produced while recording could not be played live. Initially, no one wanted to produce Slipknot music so the band had to produce its own songs with costs reportedly rising to as high as $40,000.
The band finally received its first record deal with Roadrunner Records in 1998. In 1999, they were finally able to release their self-titled debut album which in 2000 became their label's first platinum release. The successful first work was followed in 2001 by Iowa. This second album was as well received as the first one but the following year almost saw the band fall apart as internal conflicts pushed them to go on hiatus.
The band came out again in 2004 with another release, Vol. 3: (The Subliminal Verses) but by 2005, the troubled band was on its second hiatus. By 2006, the band received a Grammy Award for Best Metal Performance. This was followed by a fourth release. All Hope is Gone by 2008. In 2009, a third hiatus was announced. Unfortunately, before a third reunion could be organized, Gray was found dead due to an overdose in 2010.
Despite the apparent lack of hope for new Slipknot albums, controversies and criticisms continue to haunt the band members on indefinite leave. Among the least disturbing of these issues is the persona adopted by the different members while performing on stage. Band members wear different masks and jumpsuits and carry numbered aliases. Critics maintain that this is a basic commercial ploy to grab more attention and sell more albums. As expected, the members have denied this.
More significant issues have hounded the group, the most shocking of which were actual crimes. Perpetrators have either openly attributed these acts to the band's influence or to specific song lyrics. No official investigation links the band to these crimes and no legal actions have been taken. The occurrences however have prompted many critics to cite the possible role of aggressive music in fueling psychological imbalances that lead to criminal acts.
We'll never know for sure how much more influential Slipknot music will become. With band members pursuing individual projects and Gray dead, there is no telling just when this group will emerge with more of the distinctive belligerent sound.