Sound — 6
The one two punch of nu-metal Gods Mick Thompson (#7) and Jim Root (#4) is phenomenal! Steady, driving rhythm patterns lead almost every song and the album, and it works, to a point. Although the flow of the album gets about an 8/10, the repetitiveness of the songs really takes back from this album's potential. Without songs, such as 'Welcome', which has a strange resemblance to the later track 'The Nameless' with call and answer screaming matches between Corey Taylor (#8) and Chris Fehn (#3). Because of such drawbacks, the overall sound of the album gets a 6/10.
Lyrics — 10
This is "Corey's Album". On every song, beginning to end he delivers a stunning vocal performance. Some moments send chill through your spine, such as the bridge in 'Vermilion'. And despite all the criticism, it is still SlipKnoT. With angry anthems of hate (e.g., Opium Of The People, Pulse Of The Maggots), to songs about battles with alcoholism (e.g., Duality), to problems with relationships (eg., Vermilion Pt. I & II, The Nameless), it is the same SlipKnoT with a tweaked sound. Which brings us to another point of criticism, Corey's new voice. Now, every 'KnoT fan out there wants more albums right? Well he changed his voice so he could go on singing. At the rate he was going, with his aggressive singing style, his voice would be blown out by album four (if that won't be the last one regardless).
Overall Impression — 8
Overall, this album was fantastic. A blend of the same old hard driving, crunchy, in your face guitar part, with Jim and Mick exploring the key element Slipknot has needed all along, soloing. Of course, a new singing approach by Corey Taylor makes this album significantly contrast previous releases (Slipknot and Iowa). This album, as said before, is still the SlipKnoT we know and love.