January 19, 2017 Interview – Joey Jordison
The testament of an individual’s strength is their ability to face a challenge and embrace it. Doing exactly that, overcoming obstacles and seeking new direction, famed Metal star Joey Jordison focuses on the road ahead. A vital songwriter and creative force in international Heavy Metal super band Slipknot for eighteen years, Jordison has built a reputation as one of the scene’s most fierce drummers. Overcoming whatever life has thrown his way, Jordison now returns with a fresh outlook and band by the name of Vimic.
Set on course to release their debut full-length album, Open Your Omen, in early 2017, Vimic’s story is still being forged. A new beginning coupled with Jordison’s new found appreciation for life. Vimic’s plotline should be an interesting one. Recently we caught up with the humble yet highly accomplished musician to talk his life in music, his time with Slipknot, the concept behind Vimic, future plans, and much more.
CrypticRock.com – You have been involved in music professionally for over two decades. In that time, you have established yourself as one of the most recognized names in the Metal world as co-founder of Slipknot amongst your various other works. Through the ups and downs, what has this journey been like for you?
Joey Jordison – That is a great question. The best thing about it is life takes you down a lot of crazy roads. The fact that you can still create music, go down different paths, keep putting stuff out, and have people still respond to it, there is no better way to keep progressing when you have fans that realize what you are saying. The fact that they come back and have the same kind of perspective, you can’t really ask for anymore than that. Everything that I do in life as far as music is always trying to climb that different mountain. That is basically what I have been doing lately. To my fans, I could not thank enough, it has been great.
CrypticRock.com – It is always good to have a new challenge. As mentioned, you had an amazing eighteen year run with Slipknot, helping elevate them into international Metal superstars. Do you look back on your time in Slipknot fondly?
Joey Jordison – Absolutely. I wouldn’t even say 100%, I would say infinity percent (laughs). It lives with me everyday. To be able to create something from the ground up from Des Moines, Iowa, where I still live. To be able to do what we did. People don’t just get that gift, they don’t get that chemistry. To be a part of it and be one of the main songwriters and artists in that band, I could not be more thankful. There are no regrets in that band whatsoever, I love those guys.
CrypticRock.com – That is great to hear. Since Slipknot, you have partaken in various projects including Sinsaenum and Scar the Martyr, now you are back with a brand new band called Vimic. What inspired the formation of Vimic?
Joey Jordison – Vimic was out of the ashes of Scar the Martyr. Which I did in between a couple of records I was doing with Slipknot at the time. With Slipknot, certain members always did other ventures when we had time off. The worst thing you can do to an artist is tell them they can’t create. When you have things going on, and you have time off, you have to still play, you can’t just wait. That is the thing I do, everyday, it doesn’t matter where I am at, or who I am with, or what country I am in, I always play music. Whether I am playing on practice pads or trying out a guitar in a music store, I have to play music. I practice everyday, I practice more now than I ever have in my life.
It is just trying to keep the journey going and it is working. Everything has been great so far and I want everyone to know how much I appreciate their following. We are just moving on toward the next section of our lives.
CrypticRock.com – Interestingly, this project sees you reunite with Slipknot’s original management team along with a really wonderful lineup of musicians. How would you describe the chemistry of the band thus far?
Joey Jordison – You know, it is a weird thing; it is kind of a cliche. I like to take a cliche, wipe it clean, and scratch it off the board. Things come full circle and they are meant to be. Here is the thing, the heart never leaves a person regardless. Love conquers all. There is always hatred, confusion, turmoil. I am not trying to be a therapist or anything like that.
The thing is, I am back with my original tour manager, Danny Nozell, and Manager Steve Ross. These guys are a big part of my life and they have been a big part of my life since I started. It has come full circle, and to be back with these people shows I am here for a purpose. Doing what I do and creating music, trying to get back out there, do the best I can, give music back to the people that mean so much to me since I started, that is what I am trying to do. I could not be more happy right now.
CrypticRock.com – That is very positive to hear as well. The band has released a few tracks, and they all are quite unique to one another. Is it safe to say this diversity is a good sample of what to expect from the full-length album?
Joey Jordison – I would say so, yes. Open Your Omen, what I can tell you exclusively is that record is an excursion and kind of an exorcism of everyone’s mentality of where they were at that time. That is the best thing about music. We didn’t have a big record deal, we weren’t on tour, we didn’t have a bunch of things thrown at us. It was a bunch of guys getting in a basement and saying, “You know what? It doesn’t matter what the rest of the world thinks, this is what we are going to do. We are going to sit down, write some songs together, and we are going to be happy with it.”
Happiness is a weird thing, it is hard to achieve. When you can shut the rest world out, get in there, actually create with each other, talk to each other, and get to that point where you know what song is right where it is supposed to be, nothing is better than that. That is the ultimate reward and that is what we did with Open Your Omen.
CrypticRock.com – It sounds very exciting. The tracks which have been released are very potent and energetic. There is a lot of life amidst these songs. It will be exciting for everyone to hear the full-length record.
Joey Jordison – Thank you. What is cool about the full-length, that is one thing about promoting, for me at this point, I just want people to hear the record and listen to it through its entirety. To me, it is one song, it is front to back. They all lead into each other and they all mean something. That is my wish for the fans, is the gift of the record, listen to it, get their own meaning of it, and whatever it is, it is.
CrypticRock.com – Absolutely agreed. The art of a full-length album is very important. It is important for new Rock bands to understand that as well. It seems the direction music is going with singles and EPs, the idea of full-length albums is dying. A full-length record, which is cohesive from start to finish, is what music is all about.
Joey Jordison – It is, it really is. It is hard to do these days because everyone is putting out EPs here and there. That is awesome, I love buying EPs from bands like Mordred and Cannibal Corpse. If any EP happens when a band has a full-length, there is a certain attraction to that. Although, to put an EP out to put one out is not that attractive. It is cool, but it is not like you are getting the whole package. I want everyone to hear what the journey is from front to back.
The EP is like the icing on the cake. A couple of covers here, an extra four songs that weren’t on the album, and maybe you like them more than the ones that were on the album (laughs). That is the magic of music, that is what I like about doing it. That is why I still strive to do it.
CrypticRock.com – No question, that is what it is all about. As a musician, you have battled through things personally as well as professionally. At this point in your life, you seem to have a newfound appreciation of things. Is that an accurate assessment?
Joey Jordison – Yes. I just live life different than I did a long time ago. I like to wake up in the morning and appreciate that shower (laughs). I like to get in the shower and think, “This is awesome.” I like to go out for a nice lunch and say “This is killer.”
To be able to get in a car and drive down the street, it is just different for me now. I had been on the road for so long, since 1995, that I got so used to the rat race of what I was doing. I am still going to do it, it is not like it is going to go away. The stuff that happened to me taught me a big lesson. When you pay attention to stuff like that, everything opens. That is why we call the record Open Your Omen. There is absolutely a different mindset and heart feeling than I ever had in my life, it is really cool.
Everything we are doing right now is on the positive. Of course we talk about some dark stuff and anger issues, that is normal. That is what we do; we are a Metal band, we are not in a Classic Rock band. What we are trying to do is connect with other people’s feelings and where they are in their life. Hopefully we can connect with them, they can get out to the shows, make sure we do our show right, and they can have a total exorcism so to speak.
CrypticRock.com – It sounds very inspiring. Speaking of live shows, the band had played some shows at the end of 2016 and now you are set to go over to Europe for a March run. That said, can fans expect more touring in the USA with the band later in 2017?
Joey Jordison – Yes, absolutely. We are looking at those dates, with those type of dates, we have to make sure they are lined up properly. We have to make sure what tours we want to do and where we want to go. No matter what, we tour through this and next year.
CrypticRock.com – Fantastic. By that time, the record will be out, people can dissect it, enjoy it, and it will be fun to see Vimic live.
Joey Jordison – Yea! I hope everyone comes out, shares the time with us, because you never know where life takes you. That is the whole thing about Open Your Omen, it is life stuff. Come out and see it, we would love to have everyone, and have an exorcism of sorts.
CrypticRock.com – Well the tour will be something to look forward to once more dates are announced. As stated earlier, behind the kit, you have drummed for a lot of different bands in a lot of different styles of Metal. You stated you enjoy a challenge, you even drummed with Satyricon for a short period.
Joey Jordison – I did, it was a short run. I will tell you what, that band taught me so much. They are some of the best people and some of the most inspiring people I ever met. It was a crazy tour, it was short, there was a road block of course that was known. Other than that, those guys are absolutely one of the most unbreakable bands ever.
CrypticRock.com – They are really a great band. That is interesting to hear how much the experience taught you. Beyond your work in Slipknot and as a drummer, many also have fond memories of your work with Wednesday 13 in Murderdolls. The project came around and took a lot of people by surprise. It did great over the course of two records and was a lot of fun. Do you have fond memories of that time as well?
Joey Jordison – I cannot say anything bad about that band and what we accomplished with the Murderdolls. Those tours we did are really awe-inspiring when you look in hindsight of what we accomplished in a short amount of time and the two records we did. I could not be more proud and happy of what we accomplished in that time. Everyone that was in that band, the couple of different personels we employed, The Murderdolls were killer. Like I said before, I don’t know if I would do another record, but I won’t rule it out.
CrypticRock.com – Yes, Murderdolls exceplitfied a fun mix of Metal, Punk, and Horror. It just was a blast to listen to.
Joey Jordison – That is the thing, when we did Beyond The Valley of The Murderdolls (2002), I had already done four records with Slipknot, two that were on the label and released. When we did the first Murderdolls record, I have this Punk Rock and Pop side of me that I don’t really get to get out in other areas in my life. When we did that band, it was just pretty much to express fun, have a great time, and kind of throw a monkeywrench into what was going on in Rock and Metal at the time, and it worked. I would love to do another record, like I said, I won’t rule it out.
CrypticRock.com – It definately succeeded in all those aspects. My last question for you is pertaining to movies. CrypticRock.com covers music and Horror/Sci-Fi films. If you are a fan of the genres, what are some of your all-time favorites?
Joey Jordison – My favorite Horror movies differ all the time because great things come out every year. My favorites, I always go back to the original Nosferatu (1922), The Exorcist (1973), The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974), the Japanese version of The Ring (1998). I like Ichi The Killer (2001), that was great, even though it was very disturbing, it is a great Japanese movie. Let me look at my collection… this popped out, Army of Darkness (1992), the original Jaws (1975), Creature From The Black Lagoon (1954). Not Horror, but one of my favorite movies is Raising Arizona (1987). I could go on and on, it would take forever.