Twenty years and 11 albums in, Korn is as loud as ever.
Backstage, though, things are much quieter, and the toned-down partying has the metal outfit refocused and rejoined by founding guitarist and born-again Christian Brian Head Welch after an 8-year absence.
I came back and its like old times, but better, Welch said. Everybody has their head on straight. Everyone is thankful for life, music, a career and family, whereas before we were just like, Woo! Party! It helped me that we could have a good time with music without killing ourselves.
There was many a drink and drug imbibed during those long nights of well-deserved, if excessive, celebration of Korns continued reign over the hard rock world, enjoyed since its eponymous debut album hit shelves in 1993.
a buzz about the band that its members havent felt in some time, one
that Welch promises fans will feel during Fridays show at Chesapeake
a huge new energy on stage an excitement, he said. If you dont
love what you do, people can read between the lines and see that. We
love what we do right now.
bringing nu metal to the mainstream, winning two Grammys and selling
over 30 million albums, the band has stayed hungry, relevant and
experimental even since its relative peak around the time of Freak on
a Leash dabbling in dubstep and electronic music in 2011s partially
Skrillex-produced The Path of Totality.
Korn isnt afraid to try new things. Thats
helped us not to become stale, Welch said. We returned back to the
basics but with a new twist on this new album. Its not the same all the
time. People might hate it or love it, but its different all the
But trying something new for the bands 11th studio album, The Paradigm Shift, unleashed in October, meant getting back to basics and evoking Issues-era Korn over a decade and a half later.
concentrated on song quality to get the best songs we could with big
choruses and the things that move people, the things that move us:
guitar riffs, mosh pits and sing-along choruses, Welch said. We
focused in on that, and it does have a vibe of our older stuff, but with
a new twist.
fans new and old have responded, helping Korn get its first No. 1 spot
on Active Rock National Airplay chart with Never, Never.
lot of people are saying its the best album in 10 years, and thats a
huge compliment, Welch said. Were excited that theyre excited. They
love the traditional sound returning.