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UnMasked? Murderdolls and Stone Sour

Brixton Academy, London.

A rare chance to see the now side projects, (albeit these were their original bands), of members of the now hugely influential ‘Slipknot’ in Corey Taylor, (Stone Sour), and Joey Jordison, (Murderdolls), unmasked and in the flesh.

Strange but I thought Stone Sour would be headlining tonight but fans here to see the Murderdolls eclipsed those here to watch Corey Taylor’s ensemble. True, Corey is still an icon to most present tonight which is evidenced by the chant of ‘Corey, Corey, Corey’ between almost every song and his presence completely dwarfs that of his other band members, a fact that he himself seems a little embarrassed by.

Without any real commercial breakthrough to date and without anything unique that stands them apart from the regular metal crowd, Stone Sour still struggle to be taken seriously although they are a very solid and competent straight up and down rock and roll band. It is obvious that they can belt out a great thumping tune as is evidenced tonight by ‘Get Inside’ and ‘Monolith’ though one suspects without Corey they wouldn’t be half as popular as they currently are. Indeed it was, to me at least, the crowning moment of their set when Corey appeared on stage alone to play the beautiful acoustic track ‘Bother’ which was ethereal in it’s presence and seemed to almost take the breath out of the audience.

However, all beauty and searing ballads evaporated in the dry ice that greeted the gloriously unrefined Murderdolls. All attitude and image with lyrics that would make even Rob Zombie cringe these guys are a strange mix of glam, goth and punk rock but boy are they good fun. With slashing guitars and screeching lyrics the Murderdolls must be destined for success and even the youngest goth seems to be up and out of their coffin tonight for some frivolity and songs of Necrophilia and self-mutilation. With the upcoming release of a cover of Billy Idol’s ‘White Wedding’, performed brutally here tonight, perhaps this may be the catalyst to take them from the crypt and onto every teenagers bedroom wall. Wednesday has the looks and voice of a gravedigger whilst Joey Jordison stands moodily by watching the madness unfurl like a modern day Tony James.

With only one album behind them, (‘Into the Valley of the Murderdolls’), I wondered how the show would be but most of the tracks off that album were wheeled out tonight with reckless abandon and sheer barefaced enjoyment ? and the crowd had a hell of a time. The Murderdolls do lean heavily on a lot of obvious imagery and b-movie schlock but who cares? They’re not taking themselves too seriously and never have, I mean how can they with songs entitled ‘Graverobbing USA’ and ‘She Was A Teenage Zombie’ but the audience know all the words and throw themselves into the show as if they were bit part actors in ‘Rocky Horror Picture Show’. ‘Die My Bride’ has the crown thumping the air and the ‘Dolls leave us singing with the encore of ‘Dead In Hollywood’ their hit single. Not destined for critical acclaim – Wednesday exclaimed to the crowd ‘It’s good to see the black and red masses are even bigger now’, after tonight Wednesday they are even bigger still.

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