COREY TAYLOR: 'People Don't Understand The Numbness That Comes With' Suffering From Manic Depression

March 5, 2024

In an interview with The Void With Christina, conducted last December at the Good Things festival in Sydney, Australia but only now uploaded to YouTube, SLIPKNOT frontman Corey Taylor was asked what the response been like to him being so open about his mental health struggles and how that has changed his inner world. He responded (as transcribed by BLABBERMOUTH.NET): "It's interesting. I never realized — because you know me; I've always been very outspoken about everything — and I never realized that it was such a stigma, to be honest. It was a line that you really didn't cross or you didn't admit to, especially somebody in my profession or whatever, or people kind of used it as a buzzword. They never really talked about it eloquently or very openly. So when I first started kind of opening it up about it, the response was quite extraordinary — people just were, like, 'You gave me the courage to kind of open up about it on my own and really kind of talk to the people who I care about about what was affecting me.' And that, in a weird way, helped me with the communication with my loved ones, 'cause I felt like, yeah, I was being very open about it in the press and whatnot, but then I wasn't able to really kind of expound about it with the people who it was actually affecting. And the second that I really kind of put my money where my mouth is, it became such a game changer for me. So it, really, in a weird way, it was the fans who helped me really open up even more about it. It was almost this cyclic kind of vibe that I didn't expect."

Taylor also talked about what it has been like living with manic depression and addressed what he feels is missing from the conversation about the condition.

"It's interesting," he said. "For me, I think the biggest thing that people don't understand is the numbness that comes with it, especially when the physical side of it hits you and it becomes that slog, that almost impossible slog to just be alive or to be human. It's something that you just can't describe to people unless they've been in it. And, obviously, there are people who have had bouts of depression, but don't have the physical, the manic depression who can kind of understand it because of the emptiness, once the void hits, so they can kind of empathize in a weird way. But anyone who's never really kind of felt that, it's really difficult to try and get them to see why it's so difficult to just get through life. It's almost like replacing your body with a mannequin's body and just having to be very plastic, and everything's so deliberate and everything's so heavy… I call it trying to run underwater. So I think that's the biggest thing that really is the hardest, to really get people to understand and to empathize. And luckily, I'm now in a relationship that gets it, I'm surrounded by people who get it, and I think that's a real key. 'Cause you don't have to necessarily understand it sometimes, but to empathize and go, 'Okay, how can I help? How can I make this easier?' I've seen it with that. I've seen it with a lot of the families who I work with who deal with PTSD and whatnot. It's getting that communication to hit. I don't need you to save me. I just need you to be there if I start to fall backwards and just give me a little push. That's all I need, man. And sometimes knowing that will help you get through those bouts."

In January, Corey shared an Instagram video in response to fan concern over his well-being following the cancelation of his previously scheduled North American solo tour.

"I, over the last year, have had a complete and utter breakdown of boundaries, mental health, ego, entitlement, the whole nine yards, culminating in a very, very real, very near relapse that… I kind of don't recognize myself," he said. "So, I wanted to address this and just tell people that I needed time to reset, I needed time to start working on my heart and my mind and get straight… I'm working on self-care right now, getting the help that I need and surrounding myself with my family… It's a long road and I don't know what’s at the end of it, but I look forward to it. I have gratitude for it, and I hope you can show me some patience."

On January 5, Taylor announced that he was pulling out of his North American tour, citing struggles with mental and physical health.

"For the past several months my mental and physical health have been breaking down, and I reached a place that was unhealthy for my family and I," he wrote in a statement. "I know this decision will come as a shock to some and may be regarded as unpopular by others – but after taking a hard look at where I am and where I was going, I need to pull myself back and be home with my family for the time being. Those of you who bought tickets and VIP packages for this upcoming run will get a full refund."

Corey has a four-show run in Asia scheduled for late March and early April as well as a European summer tour from June 3 to July 2.

Corey recently completed European and North American tours in support of his sophomore solo album, "CMF2", which was released in September. Taylor's first album for BMG and the first on his own label imprint, Decibel Cooper Recordings, was produced by Jay Ruston (ANTHRAX, STEEL PANTHER, AMON AMARTH),who also helmed STONE SOUR's 2017 LP "Hydrograd" as well as 2020's "CMFT".

Taylor began tracking the follow-up to 2020's "CMFT" LP in January 2023 at The Hideout Recording Studio in Las Vegas, Nevada with Ruston. Joining Corey in the studio was the rest of his solo band — bassist Eliot Lorango, drummer Dustin Robert, along with guitarists Christian Martucci and Zach Throne.

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