Settling the Argument Between Born Bad and Damaged Good
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Hang out with a pretentious, ranting metal rocker for 250-pages.

Taylor’s band Slipknot developed a cult following during the late ’90s and early 2000s, in part due to their over-the-top theatricality, and it's this sense of melodrama that permeates what is likely the worst rock autobiography in recent memory. Taylor, the band's lead singer, has lived the prototypical rock-star life: tough upbringing, rises from obscurity, drowns in alcohol, drugs and sex, hits rock bottom, gets sober, etc. Since the author’s story is thin and not particularly interesting or original, he bulks up his memoir with pseudo-philosophical screeds about, as readers will guess from the clichéd title, the Seven Deadly Sins. Of sloth: “[it’s] a simple case of strong people forgetting their nut sacks on the corner of the dresser before they leave their house in the morning.” Along with its tastelessness, one of the other problems with the book is the artless prose—the sentences are often just randomly organized words with a period at the end. If Taylor was even the slightest bit appealing or likable as a narrator, readers may have cared about his eating tips (pizza with ranch dressing is one of his faves) or his take on film (Gordon Gekko is the coolest character name in cinema history), but he's such an arrogant blowhard that even when he tries to be charming, readers will want to smack him in the face with a copy of the Keith Richards memoir (an example of a well-executed rock autobiography). At times, Taylor’s lack of self-awareness is breathtaking. In the section on lust, for instance, he writes, “If it were not for lust, half my stories would be boring wastes of breath.” Unfortunately, dear author, all of your stories are boring wastes of breath.

Angry, self-aggrandizing, bilious and barely readable.

Pub Date: July 15th, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-306-81927-8
Page count: 272pp
Publisher: Da Capo
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1st, 2011


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