KORN: 'We Were Never A Rap-Metal Band'

January 2, 2020

In a new interview with Premier Guitar, KORN guitarists James "Munky" Shaffer and Brian "Head" Welch were asked how the band was about to rive above being tagged "nu-metal" during the 1990s and early 2000s and remain such an influential act for so long. Head responded: "We have a darker edge than a lot of those bands did back in the day. Also, we were never a rap-metal band. We had some guests that rap. But Jonathan [Davis, vocals] never rapped. He was always darker. He was into THE CURE growing up, and he had a NINE INCH NAILS influence. I feel like he stood on his own."

Added Munky: "There's always those purists that say, 'That's not what metal is about.' But I felt, like, 'Well, hey, man, we're doing what we love to do. It sounds good, and it feels good to create something different.'

"Through the years, we kept our heads down and tried not to pay attention to what everybody else was saying and doing. It just continued to evolve and work. We just really care that our fans are loving it."

Asked why they think KORN's sound has resonated with so many people for so long, Munky replied: "I think as we all got older and started to write heavier music, then Jonathan started to dig deep and find his voice. It's very real, and it resonates with people. It helps them through hard, difficult times and makes them feel like they're not alone.

Added Head: "KORN is therapy to Jonathan, and I think it's therapy for a lot of our fans.

Continued Munky: "We didn't know we were doing this, and that's the beauty of it. I think that's why it's lasted so long. It's only now that we realized that we've helped so many people through music."

This past September, KORN's latest album, "The Nothing", debuted at No. 8 on the Billboard 200 chart with 33,000 equivalent album units earned (of which 29,000 were in album sales) in its first week of release. KORN tied VAN HALEN for the fifth-most top 10s on the chart among rock bands; ahead of them: THE ROLLING STONES, with 37, THE BEATLES (32),DAVE MATTHEWS BAND (16) and SANTANA (16). "The Nothing" is KORN's 14th Billboard 200 top 10 album.

"The Nothing" was released on September 13 via Roadrunner/Elektra. The follow-up to 2016's "The Serenity Of Suffering" was once again produced by Nick Raskulinecz.

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