Slipknot’s Corey Taylor shares fan’s touching story about his divisive new mask

The frontman said he was "humbled" by the fan's vivid account

Slipknot‘s Corey Taylor has shared a touching story from a fan of the band who has hailed the special significance they’ve drawn from the frontman’s divisive new on-stage mask.

Ahead of the metal band’s forthcoming sixth album ‘We Are Not Your Kind’, which is set for release in August, Taylor introduced a new mask which had been designed by Tom Savini. However, many Slipknot fans responded negatively to the design of the new mask when it was unveiled for the first time in the video for ‘Unsainted’.

Taylor has already commented on the backlash by telling one fan that he was enjoying how much the new mask was annoying people, but he’s now shared an account from one Slipknot fan who was reminded of the TFO (transparent facial orthosis) mask they had to wear after suffering burns in a house fire.

Reddit user CplUrbz wrote in r/Slipknot: “I’ve been seeing the back and forth on his new mask, some love it, some don’t. I get it…. I personally love it for reasons i have not noticed pointed out by others yet. Coreys mask is a REALLY close comparison to a mask i had to wear for almost 2 years called a TFO, a transparent facial orthosis.

“When i was 5 i was in a house fire. i suffered 3rd degree burns to my head and face that required substantial skin grafts. well when you suffer massive burns to the face, you might be fitted with a transparent facial mask that is meant to compress the graft to prevent swelling and minimise scar tissue. that coupled together that my mom would coat the inside with aloe vera to prevent sticking and promote healing. Needless to say, i was not a pleasant thing to look at and boy did it make me all sorts of “popular” at school at that age.

“The straps would dig into my head, it was uncomfortable around my nose, and it just generally hurt most of the time along with the compression shirts i had to wear for my shoulders, back and chest that was burned as well. i had 4 of the shirts. each one with the face of a ninja turtle badge on the front. it made it hurt less.

Slipknot’s Corey Taylor

“But i had to deal with it all if i hoped to be less ugly by the time i healed than without it, all the while having to deal with the massive amounts of shit i got for looking how i did with it on to the kids around the neighbourhood. When the unsainted video came out and i saw corey’s new mask. It wasn’t terrifying but it was a massive “right in the feels” moment for me.

“All of it. the shirt i was wearing melted to my body. all my hair gone. looking down at my pink and black skin peeling arms. the cold compression of the towels the EMS guys put on me. wanting to sleep but they wouldn’t let me. the debriding, ooof the debriding. the surgery. the first night home. the shirts. the mask. the teasing, rock throwing, the exclusion. the freddy kruger references. the healing. the normalisation. the self pity. the realisation. the acceptance. the determination. the “not give a fuck”. the friends. the self reliance.

“Corey’s mask may not be what some wanted, but to me its a massive image of character change and reformation. the breaking of a person and the steps required to be better. Its not scary but that mask, my mask, made me into a stronger self sovern [sic] bulletproof person than what i may have turned out to be before i had to put it on.

“Probably more than what one person should say on the subject, or more than one would want to read. But hell, i felt like someone should point that out.”

In the above tweet, Taylor said he was “humbled” by the fan’s story. “This album is indeed about rising above the pain and being reborn,” he wrote. “And the mask is also a reflection of it all.”

Earlier this week, Tom Savini responded to the mixed reaction from Slipknot fans towards the new mask he designed for Taylor.