Corey Taylor Names Alice in Chains as the Best Live Band – ‘They’re So Good That It’s Criminal’
Corey Taylor on Backing Tracks
The question was asked after Taylor offered his take on the backing track dilemma, where he explains that he feels that relying on tracks is "fucking mechanical," leaving the performance with "no vibe" and "no heart." Instead, he prefers the more human element of a show and that he will sometimes blank on a lyric early in the song, prompting the band to start it over again. "At that point, that's all you can do. And it lets people know they're in a moment," the singer says of the song restarts.
He also acknowledges the difference between using back tracks in rap and hip-hop compared to rock and metal. Taylor notes that rap/hip-hop artists are often singing live over the track, but the some singers in the rock and metal community aren't even delivering a live vocal.
Speaking from experience, the singer recalls when Stone Sour had some orchestral parts in songs, which were replicated live with the use of backing tracks.
“I hate being chained to a click. I hate being chained to something where I can’t... Because part of the fun of live is the push and pull," he says of the thrill of performing without that piece of technology.
Corey Taylor on Why Alice in Chains Are the Best Live Band
In response, Steve-O asks Taylor who he thinks is the best live band. "Alice in Chains," reveals Taylor after thinking it over for a brief moment.
"Jerry [Cantrell]... the whole band is amazing," the singer enthuses, trying to collect his thoughts as so many reasons rush to his head. He continues, "And the way that Sean Kinney, the drummer, swings as he plays because everything for them is naturally slower. The things that they do to manipulate the riffs because they're so sludgy anyway... The way that they lock in together is fucking unreal. They're so good that it's criminal. To this day, they're that good."
Corey Taylor, "Nutshell" (Alice in Chains cover)
Corey Taylor on Tool Live
Steve-O chimes in with his own live favorite, singling out Tool.
While Taylor respects what Tool bring to the table, he admits the show they put on is not quite what he wants to gain from the live experience himself.
"Tool to me is an acquired taste because they're so dialed in that it's almost like listening to the album. And as a punk kid growing up, that's not necessarily where I'm at. They're amazing at what they do, but when I go to a show, I want to see something as well. And because they're not as demonstrably active, I get bored," Taylor candidly admits.
"And I hate to say that. It's not because they're boring," he clarifies, noting it's a matter of personal preference, "It's because I'm bored because I'm so used to shit like Napalm Death where Barney [Greenway] is walking on walls and jumping on people's heads."
"Danny Carey is one of the greatest fucking drummers of all time. The way they mesh together as a band is so effortless. They take you there. They'll extrapolate stuff for minutes upon minutes to getting you there and it's longer than the album and [makes groaning noise to reflect his personal experience] they're just pulling you in. It's crazy," he assesses of Tool's hypnotic/trance-like quality.
With that, he reckons it might be time for him to revisit Tool live and catch a show again at some point. "Maybe I should go and see them. Now [that I'm] older I would probably appreciate it more than I did when I was younger."
Listen to the full podcast episode below.