Slipknot Splits with Craig Jones; Debuts New Member in Austria

Slipknot took the stage at the Nova Rock Festival in Austria last night for one of their most insane shows in years. And for a group that’s notorious for epic pyrotechnics, stage-diving, and the most intense mosh pits in the heavy metal scene, that’s saying a lot! As they worked through a setlist that included one Slipknot tour debut and several songs they hadn’t played in years, fans noticed something even more crazy. One key member was missing, while a mysterious new masked figure lurked in the background.

Let’s back up a bit, shall we? On June 7th, Slipknot posted a brief but shocking statement on their social media accounts…they were parting ways with keyboardist Craig “133” Jones after 27 years. Fans worldwide were shocked at the news and left with dozens of questions. Would Slipknot really be the same without the notorious “pinhead” mask made up of over a dozen needles sticking out from every angle? Their curiosity only heightened after Slipknot deleted all the posts mere hours later, instead debuting a shot of a new mystery member that would later appear onstage in Austria.

Just like the rest of the Slipknot masks, the new member wears an accessory that’s straight out of your nightmares. With a black leather face, red eyes, and zipper mouth, he was quite easy to spot at the latest Slipknot concert, even as he tried to stay under the radar. Who is he? What’s his name? Is this a permanent or temporary solution to Jones’ departure? Fans had dozens of questions even as they headbanged to the best heavy metal hits, including all the most popular Slipknot songs, plus a few deep cuts.

They played “The Blister Exists,” “Liberate,” and “Purity” for the first time since the mid-2010s, plus a live debut of “Yen” off their new record, last year’s The End, So Far. And then there are all the classics like “The Dying Song (Time to Sing),” “Duality,” “Surfacing,” and “People = Sh**,” which frontman Corey Taylor growled out like a boss. In addition to the mystery member onstage, fans also mentioned the noticeable absence of Shawn “Clown” Crahan, who will be absent from upcoming shows as he stays home to care for his wife’s health.

Slipknot has undergone quite a few lineup changes since their formation in 1996, but the loss of Jones hits home for longtime fans of the band. He’s an original member with an undeniable talent for mixing and sampling, and he’ll be sorely missed! As Slipknot continues their European tour, we’ll await answers on their mysterious new member and what’s next for one of the world’s biggest heavy metal bands. In the meantime, check out the full Austria setlist here.

Slipknot setlist

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Last updated: 27 Sep 2023, 10:38 Etc/UTC