BY MICHAEL GOODPASTER|
(Korn - 1994) - The classic “Woodstock 99” clip. I really think it was the adrenaline of the crowd from Korn and Rage Against The Machine that night that caused that riot. Many people want to say it was Limp Bizkit, but I think it was those two bands and the crowd just got bored and destructive during Bizkit. None the less, the second the song breaks, HUNDREDS OF THOUSDANDS of bodies move like the ocean. The raw primitive scream of “ARE YOU READY?” is enough to make a church start moshing. The song itself isn’t nearly as good as the majority of Korn’s singles and a good portion of B-Sides. It’s that repetavive and tempting guitar riff, the opening scream, and the ending, which probably should have been a chorus for the song instead of a bridge/outro.
(THREE) “SOMEBODY SOMEONE”
(Issues - 1999) - This was the second single from Issues and probably not even the most popular one, but I like it. To me, it’s probably Korn’s best song. It’s got a good groove, Jonathan Davis displays a more polished vocal style mixed in with some pretty primal screams. I’m a big fan of the break down. It’s not gibberish-insanity like a “Freak on a Leash”, but it’s just as explosive. The next album Untouchables was decent and had a couple okay tracks but from there the band progressively lost its luster (until this new one). That would make this album, for me specifically this song, as the “last of the best”.
(Life Is Peachy - 1996) - And acronym for “All Day I Dream About Sex”, this song got Korn out there early on. It didn’t blow them up huge, but it put them in one of those hypothetical “buzzworthy bands” type of list. For me, it was this song and “Shoots and Ladders” that introduced me to the band. I wasn’t sure if I liked it or was just curious until their next album, which won me over. It would still be a few years before they blew up, but the “naughtiness” of this song still has its novelty. That’s not saying it’s not a bad song, but today it’s mostly on record as strip club music. Nothing wrong with that. The problem is that it’s awkward to just randomly play this song. Who wants to be “that guy”. But then you don’t get to hear it because on the radio the edit is lame. That really lame sounding “humping” replacing “f*cking” is up there with the infamous “Lebowski” TV edits. You can’t enjoy it when it’s censored. It’s like getting in a shouting fight and saying “F-Word YOU!”
(ONE) “FREAK ON A LEASH”
(Follow the Leader - 1998) - If you’re so cool that you HAVE to say Korn or Life is Peachy is their best album then you’re trying too hard to be cool. Follow the Leader is their best album hands down. It’s got their biggest hits on it, it’s a front to bad good album, and was the peak of their awesomeness. As “Got The Life” was the first single that pushed the door open a little, to me it’s “Freak On a Leash” that laid down the foundation of Korn’s future shoe-in Hall of Fame career. You can label the album as being “nu metal”, and I guess by definition it is, but good music is good music. This is best Korn has had to offer and now in retrospect is a staple in that era’s music. If “nu metal” was the late 90’s “hair metal” then Korn is the Motley Crue. The video stands out because of Todd McFarlane’s awesome work. The animation was on a lot of shirts at the time and this video was very popular. It dominated TRL in a time when boybands and pop singers owned the show. It’s still as good of a song as it was back then. The change ups, the vocal styles, the distortion layers, and complete chaos of Jonathan Davis during his gibberish-rant during the break is still remarkable and dare I say timeless. Are we already to this point? Korn is timeless? Wow.