The final show: Birmingham. Also the biggest instore of all: the band spend more than 3.5 hours signing over 3000 autographs. Corey says afterwards, “I’m really tired, but I’m really happy we got everyone”. Some female fans are so overwhelmed at getting to meet the band, they collapse into tears when they finally say hello, and get comforted with a hug from Joey. The NME have been following 3 fans around all day for an upcoming A Day In The Life Of A Slipknot Fan feature. Right before the band take the stage they pose for photos for Metal Hammer, and a group shot with In Flames – one of Mick’s favourite bands (so much so in fact, that when they took the stage in London, Mick legged it to the side of the stage so he didn’t miss any of their set). The show is amazing, “the best fucking show on this tour”, says Corey and backstage later Joey tells us how he “didn’t want to come off the stage at all”. The set ends with ‘Surfacing’ and several thousand velvet seat cushions flying through the air as all the fans with seating tickets rip them from their chairs and hurl them into the standing crowd. The standing crowd in turn take aim at the stage and eachother so before long, there are piles of cushions everywhere you look, with Clown and Jim even fashioning new hats from them. The band are clearly delighted, and Joey stashes one inside their wardrobe crate, so he can take it home to Iowa. Backstage after the show, the Roadrunner teamers wait anxiously in American Head Charge’s dressing room to meet the band. Not only do they meet Slipknot, the One Minute Silence guys pop in to say hi, and Slipknot’s Jim even obliges a phone call request to a fan not at the show, before telling us with a grin how much he is looking forward to being at home again, so he can “go ride motorbikes and break a fuckin’ arm”. Corey tells all the teamers how much the band appreciate their help and efforts before collapsing in a tired heap in a corner with a large Jack ‘n’ Coke. Sid hangs out with family who have come to see the show, and Craig wanders the corridors anonymous, taking in everything going on around him. Clown is mostly absent, having taken a worried looking NME journalist off on his own for a tour around the stage. Everyone is sorry the tour is over, but looking forward to going home to Iowa – the band drive down to London overnight, and catch a flight back to the US the following morning. What’s next? Corey has plans to develop his Super Ego side project, and Sid may well be back over here as DJ Starscream before too long. As Slipknot, one thing’s for sure, whatever they do next, it certainly won’t be dull. Next stop, Cardiff. Time for another instore. Loaded magazine follow the band around all day, writing and taking photos for an upcoming 3-page feature. The band squeeze in interviews for BBC Wales Pop Factory TV show, The Chart Show, and the Evening Session radio show. Approximately 2500 people are queuing for autographs, so many that the whole street is blocked. The band sign for nearly 3 hours straight, while fans outside the shop shout “let us in” at the store staff, and some even try to climb on the bus shelters and shop roof for a better view. Towards the end of the instore, the band are given a doll by a fan, which to her amusement (don’t worry, she wasn’t upset), they smash to bits on the table, destroying the table as well in the process. And that was all before the show began. Now if you’ve never been to Brighton, you won’t know that the venue is actually a sports hall. And hence, easily half the size of the other venues on this tour. With the band using the full arena production in a much smaller space, it was always bound to be a full-on show. If you were a sneaky fan and lurked out the back you might have even caught a glimpse of the band, for the buses were parked on the street. The morning of the 18th was spent doing interviews for MTV: for Brand:New, News Europe, Daily Edition, My Life Story, and 5 Best Albums shows. Pre-stage time, the band are hanging out in their dressing rooms. Having been introduced to a sound/action based game called ‘Bop It’ (note: you can buy it from Argos, approx í£20) by Marilyn Manson, while on the Ozzfest tour, it’s been travelling round the UK with them. Joey bounces out of the dressing room in mid-play, while minutes later Corey appears, complete with voice-changing robotic megaphone in hand and proceeds to shout down it into the face of their larger than life don’t-mess-with security dude, who isn’t fazed in the slightest. You get the impression he’s well used to it. Bored with the megaphone, Corey indulges in some nearby ‘lift-diving’ scaring the wits out of anyone who walks down the corridor at the wrong moment. The show, of course, is another blinder, with Paul afterwards apologising for not chatting longer to the Roadrunner teamers backstage, for he put so much into the show he feels physically ill now and needs to go lie down on the bus to recuperate. Corey & Co. continue to chat with the teamers, shouting bizarre answerphone messages upon request, signing anything put in front of them, even posing for photos. Though affable, the band members are not easy to read. At one point, Corey leans in close and bellows at me, and it’s only when I catch the twinkle in his eyes I realise he’s not serious. I pull a face at him, to the shock of nearby teamers, and he immediately cracks a grin and pulls a face back. He has a shouting match with another RR rep at the show, but again it’s all in jest. I sense he finds amusement seeing how people will react. The pranks continue on leaving the show – the band’s tour manager is making every effort to get everyone on the bus, and still lots of fans are hanging out, hoping to say hi. A rather non-descript guy walks past the bus, virtually ignored by everyone, until the tour manager shouts at him (with a big smile), “Clown! Hey Clown, get on the bus, now!” It’s not Clown of course, but it was bloody funny from where we were standing as a few people took off after him. The joys of anonymity. The day before Brighton was a day off for the band. We can tell you that Sid took the opportunity to catch up with family in Oxford, and Jim took a shopping trip to Camden, London. If you were out drinking in Oxford that Sunday night, you may well have queued at the bar with a few members of the ‘Knot out for some liquid refreshment! We arrived at the London Arena mid afternoon on Saturday to find that all the oil from Joey’s riser had leaked out… effectively, rendering it broken. A frantic couple of hours were spent finding someone to come out at short notice and fix it before the show began! They did a good job, for Joey’s drum solo went off without a hitch, and many were heard at the end of the night proclaiming it a real highlight, and wondering how he managed to keep playing while facing the floor, the ceiling, and spinning round! Despite security stopping Sid from jumping from the balcony, he wasn’t deterred from jumping from the speakers and crowd-surfing. During the Spit It Out mosh, Sid had nearly all the clothes from his back torn off, and he returned to the stage with his boilersuit barely hanging on him! Clown came onstage complete with a severed pigs head which he duly held up high and paraded with before throwing it out into the crowd. We hear the fan who caught it proudly held onto it for the whole set and took it home after – whether it was to be dinner, or the new family pet, we do not know. We can also now elaborate on the “foam stuff” mentioned earlier this week. Several foam/snow machines were set up around the stage and used to create a winter wonderland during the performance of ‘Gently’ – dare we say it looked really quite beautiful. More than 25 cameras were in place in London to record every spectacular moment of the whole show for the band’s first DVD release and footage for the video for the next single, My Plague. Manchester. This show report comes direct from Slipknot fan Jordan Fitzsimmons who went to the show and emailed us about it! “Joey’s drum solo was incredible and Slipknot’s opening with People=Shit was out of this world. There was a standing ovation and everyone went crazy. I particually enjoyed Disasterpiece, Surfacing, (Sic) and Eyeless. I was really glad to hear them play Purity too. The fire works in songs like the Heretic Anthem were crazy. I nearly fell out of my seat with shock. And the jumpdafuckup part during Spit It Out was cool. I was ready to jump fucking high and thats what I bloody did. The performance of Wait And Bleed was crazy because you could hardly hear Corey (8) because everyone in the arena was singing and going crazy. When Corey first started singing Wait And Bleed Iheard this girl behind me go, “YES!” The concert was brutal and I can’t wait until they release their sicness on England again.” And so, the first Slipknot show (Glasgow) of the UK tour is done. Michelle, the band’s UK press officer, tells that everyone “went bananas” and it was ” just reaction, reaction, reaction for the whole show. There was no lull.” Both Chris and Clown have new custom kits this trip. Michelle reckons one of her highlights was Joey’s solo. Yes, Joey does a solo as part of the set, and so does Sid. Have you heard about all the pyros yet? “It’s fuckin’ amazing, it just looks like Hades”, reports Michelle, talking about stage with the ‘fire pots’ used to shoot 20′ flames into the air during Heretic Anthem. “The heat, oh my god, if you are in the front row, you’re gonna get your eyebrows singed!” The band have also brought with them massive ‘666’ signs which flash red. And if you see the crew onstage cover their ears at any point, copy them. The ‘flash bombs’ the band set off duing the set are so loud they’ll make your ears hurt. What else is instore? “Foam stuff” tells one e-teamer at the show – “at one point it looked like it was snowing onstage.” Last night the set list consisted of: (515), People = Shit, Liberate, Left Behind, Eeyore, Disaster Piece, Purity, Gently, Sid’s Solo, Eyeless, Joey’s Solo, My Plague, New Abortion, Heretic Anthem, Spit It Out, Wait And Bleed, (Sic), & Surfacing! The band take the stage at approx 9:30pm. Tonight (Feb 14) marks the start of Slipknot’s UK tour run – 6 shows in 7 nights. Earlier today the band hung out with 3,000 fans at an in store in Glasgow, the first of three during this UK tour leg. How have things been going during the three prior weeks in Europe? Corey, whilst playing dice and gambling backstage before their show in Belgium on the 12th, relays the following: “things are going good…We had 2 nights in Paris – amazing, broke out some different shit for them. Visited Jim Morrison’s grave (Corey, Jim and Clown), paid our respects and left a Slipknot hat for him. Currently an afternoon in Brussels…there’s about to be a fight (laughing)…all the pressure coming together, it’s fuckin evil – tensions mounted, aggressions to be spilled…it’s all good, 6 shows left in 9 nine more days.” As this is being written, the man behind The Production Gospel According To Dave is in the Greater Philly airport, awaiting a flight to London. Reason? If you remember, in a mere 2 days on Saturday (16th), the show at the London Arena will be shot for an upcoming Slipknot dvd project and for an upcoming video for “My Plague”. A note to all you London cats – be fucking sic. One final note, in case you are unaware, Slipknot will be doing two more in store appearance whilst in the UK: Tuesday, 19th at Virgin Megastore in Cardiff, and Wednesday, 20th at Virgin Megastore in Birmingham. During these in store appearances, the first 1,000 fan in attendance will be given a raffle ticket, one ticket which will be picked for the holder to personally meet up with the band and get an international football shirt signed by all nine members – all details below. It’s true. The band have arrived in the UK and are currently in Glasgow for their show today on Valentines Day! Also, if you are in Glasgow, get yourself down to the Virgin Megastore for midday for the band are doing a signing session! We hear that as of the midday start, more than 3000 people have shown up already… that’s a lot of autographs to sign.