Slipknot have always been, inarguably, a highly visually effective band. A lot of that comes from percussionist Clown’s creative drive, who has directed a few Slipknot music videos now and seems to be the big ideas man within the Iowa band through his artistic vision by constantly pushing boundaries. Initially this live recording had left me a little flat and underwhelmed, which is highly disappointing. I appreciate there’s not a huge amount you can do with a live performance but it’s not what I’ve come to expect from a group that puts as much into their over all appearance as they do their music. Understandably though, whilst Clown was the director, he is also performing so has to work with what footage was captured. Certain shot choices that baffled me include; fisheye close ups of Clown belting down his microphone to drone visuals of near complete darkness [one suspects to show the sheer scale of the event but you can’t really see anything the majority of the time] and cameras tracking the first row who are in the deep, dark depths of not being illuminated and therefor appear to be trivial and pointless decisions to add to the final cut.
Having said that, there are some very effective shots, memorably as a drone looks directly down on the ground and pans out, roughly half way through the DVD just after ‘Vermillion’ ends as well as a crane operated camera on the left hand side and central sound tower that both shake from the force of the music and crowd gives an added energy and doesn’t appear to be an editing trick.
In 2015 the nine-piece returned back to Mexico City for the first time in sixteen years with not just a live performance, but with their own festival too. Throughout there are a few Spanish phrases and words flung about as well as the Mexican flag which has that iconic Slipknotagram placed in the centre that makes quite appearances here and there.
If you’ve never seen Slipknot live - and if so, why the hell not?! - then this is one of the few ways you can see how powerful a singer Corey Taylor is, often holding that microphone easily one foot and sometimes two or three feet away from his lips - a mark of a truly great and powerful singer. The sheer sense of scale, when shown properly, really helps the understanding why Slipknot call their fans ‘maggots’, if ever you were in any doubt as to why, ‘Day of the Gusano' demonstrates it superbly. No greater show of this than during the infamous ‘Spit It Out’ jump-the-fuck-up scene. Another USP was in a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it moment by changing “where are you going to be in the next five years?” to “sixteen years” which also features during ‘Spit It Out’. This is something Slipknot started on their ten year anniversary of being together.
Over all I am left with mixed feelings. For sheer scale it is a highly impressive show, but with Corey loosing his ability to scream and with more energy packed DVD’s such as ‘Disasterpieces’ or their live recording at Download on their tenth anniversary [which is also a half hour longer] are a better demonstration of this mighty powerhouse of musical talent. Personally, I’d be far more interested in the documentary side of this magnanimous event that was shown in theatres than this particular live performance.