Knotslip are one of the greatest tribute acts in the country at the moment, so it was only a matter of time before we gave them coverage on here! We caught up with their #7 Ali ahead of their show at Wrexham for a chat.
Could you introduce yourself and the band?
I’m Ali, I’m #7 and I play guitar. We are Knotslip, a tribute to Slipknot!
Where did the idea for forming a Slipknot tribute act come from?
An idea came up from one of the promoters in Plymouth to do a Stars In Their Eyes night. I wanted to get in on it with my band, Bring The Plague, because we hadn’t had a gig in a while, so I was like “we’ll do Slipknot!” Then I completely forgot about it, before realising we’d need extra musicians to do it, so we had to find another four people who were all in the Plymouth music scene from other metal bands and DJs, the drum and bass guy…and literally in a month, we scrabbled together a ten or twelve-song Slipknot set thinking it would just be a good laugh, but we went all out with the costumes and masks, and it went down a storm! Within the next month, we had a tour lined up and pretty much everything went from there.
There’s some awful tribute acts out there, but you’re definitely one of the best ones around – how do you keep things fresh?
Deodrant? (laughs) I think the best bet is to play it well and have it onstage, otherwise people get cheated out of their entrance money.
What can people expect to see at your live shows?
What, after 9pm or before? It’s just chaotic – it’s a tribute to our favourite metal band! They don’t really do a lot now other than main headliner festival slots and you don’t get to see Slipknot like they were in 2000 or 2001. We love Slipknot, it’s not meant as an insult, and we’re all from that background so we’re born and bred metal anyway. We just want to have fun, and we’ve made so many friends doing this.
What shows do you prefer – ‘smaller’ ones like this one, or ones on the bigger stages?
With small shows, it can go one of two ways. You can either have a stage which is too small, so you’ve got to pile onto the floor which is always good fun. You might only be playing to 200 people and it’s a good 200 people, but if you find yourself having to replace equipment because of it, then…
When you’re playing a festival, you’ve got more room, so when there’s stuff like baseball bats and kegs flying around, it’s nice to know that you’ve got a bit of space! It’s great to look out and just see a sea of people enjoying themselves to you, which feels like a nice pat on the back!
What sets Knotslip apart from other Slipknot tribute acts?
We are set apart because we’re badass at what we do anyway! We’re all hardcore metal musicians, and we rock! The others are probably good, but…! (laughs)
What would you say the hardest aspect of recreating a Slipknot show is?
All of it! Slipknot are different because they are nine individual characters. As much as I want to be myself onstage, who’d want to come and see me headbang like they would in Bring The Plague? They want to see me try and headbutt the floor like Mick Thompson does! You have to get into character and you have to be prepared to be covered in all kinds of blood and muck!
What songs are your favourite to perform?
I like starting with (Sic) and having that last moment of peace before it goes into chaos, and I like ending with Spit It Out…without giving too much away about the set, of course! There’s a couple of other cheeky little things thrown into it as well, which I don’t want to say much about.
If you could invite a member of Slipknot onstage to perform with you for a song, what track and member would you choose?
Oh god, that’s really difficult! I’ll have to be biased and say that I would like to be onstage with Mick Thompson and Jim Root, and play Gematria.
And what are you hoping to achieve in 2014 with Knotslip?
In 2014, I’d like to see more of the UK and maybe get into Europe. Just build a bigger fanbase! We love what we do, and people nine times out of ten enjoy what we do – it’d be nice to make more friends and find more places to drink! And get more cake! If we get more cake, the world would be a better place.
Check out our review of the gig here!