Joey and Paul began working on new music together in October, 2000. Jim soon got a call from Paul to go over to Paul’s brother’s basement, where him and Joey were working on some of the demos for the new album. They would write new material that would be used for much of the upcoming album. During this time the other members took a break after the extensive touring that had followed the release of Slipknot’s debut album.
On January 17, 2001, The band traveled to Los Angeles, California to record at Sound City. This would become known as one of the worst periods in Slipknot’s history.
Joey Jordison: “That’s where we got into a war,” citing the lack of a break after touring. Other factors, including Corey’s alcohol addiction, other members’ drug addictions, and management issues affected relations in the band. It is fair to say, the band was in a dark place during this time.
Clown: “Recording Iowa was fucking hell”. “I wanted to kill myself. There was drugs, bitches, rock ‘n’ roll, all that shit. People expected so much of us then. ‘People = Shit’ was our way of saying, ‘Fuck off and leave us alone.’ “
“There was nothing happy about Iowa,” a sentence Corey would later use to describe this time period.
All of a sudden the members were metal stars. They’d all get caught up in the lifestyle and the problems that come with it. A darkness set in at the beginning of Iowa that none of them quite recognized.
This was the first Slipknot album where Jim was significantly involved, as he joined the band in the later stages of recording the S/T album. Jim felt a lot of pressure from Mick to perform well.
Corey would put himself in specific situations to achieve his performance on the album. While recording vocals for the final song “Iowa”, he was completely naked, vomiting all over himself, and cutting himself with broken glass.
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Breakdowns & Accidents
Many of the members were deep into substance abuse and Jim was no exception. During the recording he was up for a few days partying and then he had a breakdown. He didn’t go into the studio for a few days, and someone from their management company had to try to mellow him out.
Sid’s grandfather passed away during the recording sessions, and though Sid tried to make it back home to see him before he passed, he ended up being too late. When he showed up to the studio shortly after, Sid gets in the recording booth and just lets go. The pain comes out in screams that would end up being used for the album’s intro, “(515)”.
While producing the album, Ross Robinson got injured in a motocross accident, suffering a fractured back in the process. He returned to the studio after a day of hospital treatment, reportedly “putting all of his pain into the album”, much to the admiration of the band. He used this to motivate the band, many of whom had been turning up late to the studio due to excessive partying. Robinson would produce much of the album from a wheelchair.
New Masks & Jumpsuits
The band started working with a Japanese special effects artist, Screaming Mad George. He made most of the masks used for the Iowa era, excluding the store-bought masks that transitioned from S/T to the Iowa album cycle.
The band members sat down with SMG to explain what each of them wanted. He would then make life casts of the member’s faces and use them to make custom fitting masks for the band. More information about the different masks at our IOWA Masks section.
Slipknot also had new custom jumpsuits made for the Iowa cycle. They would come in a handful of different colors and the emroidered designs varied a little between different versions, but all the jumpsuits followed a similar style. More information about can be found at our IOWA Suits section.
Iowa was announced as the album’s title and it was named after the band’s home state of Iowa. The intro song “(515)” is also a reference to their home state, named after the telephone area code for central Iowa.
The album was scheduled for release on June 19, 2001, and was to be followed by a five-date warm-up tour. However, the mixing of the album took longer than expected, so the album’s release date was delayed and the tour was cancelled.
Slipknot would give away copies of “Heretic Song”, titled “The Heretic Anthem” on the album, free on their website. It was limited to 666 copies. The giveaway began on May 15, 2001, and lasted until all the copies were gone.
In May, 2001 Slipknot spent 7 days rehearsing for the upcoming European tour at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, MN. On day 7 they spent 6+ hours recording “I Am Hated” for the movie Rollerball.
Iowa World Tour
In support of the upcoming album, Slipknot began a new tour in May, 2001, called the Iowa World Tour. First leg of the tour in Europe was called Kill The Industry. The band would end up playing 13 shows in Europe, last of which was in June 4, 2001, before heading back to the US.
Four days later, in June 8, 2001, they would start the Ozzfest 2001 tour, performing on the main stage after Papa Roach and before Marilyn Manson. The tour would last all the way up to August 12, 2001.
Left Behind and People=Shit were leaked online and made available for digital download in July 2001.
The IOWA album was officially released on August 28, 2001.
Next in line was the Pledge of Allegiance Tour, which was co-headlined by the band System of a Down. Both groups used the tour as a promotion for their new albums. The tour was supposed to start on September 14, 2001, but was postponed for a week due to the terrorist attacks on September 11. Five shows were rescheduled and four shows were cancelled, the rest of the dates went ahead as originally scheduled.
This tour would make Corey’s “Panda” paintjob on his IOWA mask famous and this version would later be known as the POA Corey mask. More information about the masks on our IOWA Masks section.
The POA tour ended on November 2, 2001.
As Left Behind was leaked online earlier, it was subsequently played by several radio stations in the United States, forcing Roadrunner to officially release the track to radio earlier than originally intended. The song was released as a single on October 29, featuring live versions of Slipknot tracks “Liberate” and “Surfacing” as B-sides.
The European Iowa Tour was next.
In mid-November 2001, the band announced that they plan to go ahead with their upcoming European tour and the start date was moved from February to January 2002.
Slipknot would start the European Tour in Helsinki, Finland on January 20, 2002. They would tour Europe for a month and end the tour in Birmingham, England on February 20, 2002.
The show in London, England on February 16, 2002 was filmed and would later be used for the Disasterpieces video album.
In February, 2002, the movie Rollerball was released. Slipknot made a special appearance in the film performing “I Am Hated”.
On March 18, 2002, Slipknot would start the Japanese Tour in Rainbow Hall in Nagoya, Japan. They’d go on to play 8 shows in total. This tour in Japan included photoshoots that would make Clown’s red nose mask a popular version. Clown and Jim also wore surgical masks with kanji on them for a photoshoot and a live show.
July 8, 2002, a second single from the album “My Plague” was released, which appeared on the soundtrack for the film Resident Evil.
Slipknot would end the Iowa World Tour with European festival tour. This leg consisted of several festival appearances across Europe, beginning with the Festival Ilha Do Ermal on August 20, 2002. Most known of the festival shows was the Reading and Leeds Festival, where Clown wore his WG clown mask which would in the future be called the Reading Clown mask. The jumpsuits would also get their nickname from the show, Reading jumpsuits. More information about the jumpsuits in our IOWA Suits section.
Because of the shorter set times available at festivals, “Gently” and “New Abortion” were removed from the setlist on this leg. Last show of the tour was on August 29, 2002.
After touring, Slipknot went on hiatus because of internal conflicts, and band members focused on side projects. Corey and Jim revived their band Stone Sour, Joey created Murderdolls with vocalist Wednesday 13, Clown founded To My Surprise and Sid went solo as DJ Starscream.
For a while, the future of Slipknot was uncertain and there was much speculation about whether there would be a third album, or if the split would become permanent.
“I don’t have a problem with anyone in Slipknot,” Jordison protested. “I’ve seen comments from Corey saying there are things to be resolved, but I have no fucking idea what he’s talking about.”
However, Slipknot would return in November to release the Disasterpieces DVD.
Disasterpieces screening party took place on November 1, 2002 in New York City. The Roadrunner US office led a ‘Maggot March’ to promote the upcoming Slipknot DVD. Hundreds of fans and industry folk in the Grand Ballroom of the Manhattan Center, all celebrating and watching the upcoming Slipknot ‘Disasterpieces’ DVD. The atmosphere was a total carnival – hot dog, candy floss & popcorn stands, fire breathers, a man hammering nails up his nose, giveaways, a belly dancer, three bars (of course), and a bug eating chick. Clown, Paul, Chris, and Craig from Slipknot were present – all gathered on stage to introduce the DVD.
Disasterpieces is Slipknot’s second video album. It was filmed at the London show in England on February 16, 2002 – one of the last European dates on the Iowa World Tour. The show was filmed by 26 cameras, including “first person” point of view of several band members.
The concept behind these cameras was to allow the viewer to see the show from the band member’s point of view. But they did cause some discomfort and problems for some band members. Paul ended up removing his after four songs, saying that “they gave us this big camera pack to wear around our waist. So when I was jumping around, the thing started sliding down my leg“.
During the song “Spit It Out” Sid went in to the crowd and eventually had his camera stolen. It caused an argument backstage, however the camera was returned at the end of the show.
Freddy VS Jason Premiere
Slipknot attended the Los Angeles premiere of the film “Freddy vs. Jason” on August 13, 2003. The film’s soundtrack featured the song “Snap” by Slipknot.