Nu-metal is - thankfully - a dead genre now, but for many people it’s hard to say it doesn’t hold a place in your heart somewhere. All the angst and anger from middle school and high school was really captured by the genre. Korn is one of those bands that really embodied the genre, but they didn’t start by taking the easy route. Korn went beyond the typical nu-metal anger in Korn, their 1994 debut that hits really personally and with a different kind of rage.
This genre is categorized by its angst and anger, and there is certainly plenty of it in Korn. Opening track ‘Blind‘ is pretty much the epitome of blind anger, the brooding start to the record really seething with rage. ‘Ball Tongue‘ follows with even more anger, but this time in a more chaotic and wild way. While Jonathan Davis delivers the final blows with his barked vocals, the rest of the instruments add up to similar rage as well, especially the guitars. Grungy, thick riffs dominate Korn, especially in tracks like ‘Predictable‘ and ‘Clown.’
There’s more to Korn than the typical teenage angst you’d expect. Sure, some songs are applicable to the that stage of everyone’s life, but Korn goes a bit deeper. There are a lot of songs that really have a sense of torture to them, particularly closing track ‘Daddy,’ where for a majority of the time Davis is either crying or yelling out in just pure anger about being abused and all that he endured as a kid. Not as chaotic but indeed dramatic is ‘Need To‘ to connect with a more innocent audience, but when Davis goes deep, it’s clear. Even the track ‘Faget‘ is weirdly applicable even today. Though you can’t really go around singing this song anymore, the lyrics of self-hate and self-doubt do still make connections.
Korn went beyond the typical nu-metal anger in Korn, their debut record that really paved a way for nu-metal to come. The genre has a bad rep, but at the end of the day it gave our uncertain, angst-ridden minds some relief. And if it helped the members of this band work through some emotions as well, then it’s an album done right.
Favorite Track: Predictable
Least Favorite Track: Divine
Rating: 70 / 100
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