Album review: Corey Taylor – CMF2

Slipknot frontman Corey Taylor assuredly takes his solo work to the next level on commanding second album.

Album review: Corey Taylor – CMF2
Emily Carter

It’s hard to think of someone who adores music quite as much as Corey Taylor. Despite hitting the big 5-0 in just a few months’ time and with 15 studio albums to his name (seven with Slipknot, six with the on-hiatus Stone Sour, and two under his initials-loving solo project), the Des Moines legend somehow sounds anything but jaded. In fact, we’d say he’s quite literally incapable of having anything other than a huge amount of giddy fun on the job. That was certainly the case on Corey’s wild – if a little all over the place – 2020 debut CMFT, and it still rings true on the even better follow-up, CMF2.

Take a breath…’ Corey sings softly on country-tinged opener The Box. ‘Enjoy the show.’ And a show is pretty much exactly what this is, as the frontman of one of modern metal’s greatest bands gives fans a hefty dose of what he does best (the nu-metal verses of Post Traumatic Blues, the typically fired-up All I Want Is Hate) as well as something a bit different (sweet, sentimental love songs for his wife). A theatrical display of his musical past, present and apparent future, CMF2 is, in Corey’s own words, “where we’re going” – and it points to a genuine confidence in solo mode.

As he noted in this week’s Kerrang! Cover Story, CMF2 is a bit like Foo Fighters’ 2005 double-album In Your Honor, in that there’s a notable split between the heavy and the light. Where Talk Sick and the Operation Ivy-inspired We Are The Rest boast plenty of trademark blistering Corey attitude, Sorry Me and aforementioned opener The Box have that more vulnerable touch. It keeps things feeling fresh, and as though you’re digging into his personality and the ups and downs of his own life.

Elsewhere, Breath Of Fresh Smoke, the triumphant Punchline and album highlight Starmate specialise in grander, more cinematic rock’n’roll. Armed with his honed-in backing band of guitarists Christian Martucci and Zach Throne, drummer Dustin Robert and new bassist Eliot Lorango, it’s a sound that really suits, and bodes well for a man who recently told K! that he now sees this side of his career as something to keep going “forever, for the duration”.

Which is a great thing. Because as long as Corey still loves what he’s doing, he’ll always have an audience that care just as much.

Verdict: 4/5

For fans of: Guns N’ Roses, Alter Bridge, Slipknot

CMF2 is released September 15 via Decibel Cooper / BMG

Read this: Corey Taylor: “You either take advantage of what you’ve got going on now, embrace it and live in that moment, or you watch it fade away”

Now read these

The best of Kerrang! delivered straight to your inbox three times a week. What are you waiting for?