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Corey Taylor
America 51
Type: Book
Company: Da Capo Press
Release: 2017
Genre: Heavy/Extreme
Reviewer: Greg Watson
Published: 8/23/2017
Call it Corey Taylor's State of the Union Address
Full title: America 51: A Probe into the Realities That Are Hiding Inside "The Greatest Country in the World"

Anyone who read Corey Taylor's "You're Making Me Hate You" knows that Taylor is quite capable of throwing out plenty of hilarious tales and pet peeves in a very entertaining way. Going into "America 51" I was expecting a bit of the same but after reading the first sentence, I knew this wasn't going to be like his last book. Taylor is sure to offend some people's ideology and political beliefs as he rails against Trump, Republicans, Democrats, and America as a whole. Most of the people who will be offended will stop after his first sentence or at the end of the first chapter. But if you can put aside your ability to be easily offended, which is something that is running rampant these days, you'll get a book that has a lot of truth to it, some pretty damn funny stories and is a well thought out introspective look at the state of the country today.

Call it Corey Taylor's State of the Union Address if you like. You might not agree with everything he says but you can't deny that he isn't just spewing vitriol and inane babble. With an acerbic wit, a very common person vocabulary and a style that is Taylor's alone, he gets you thinking about things and wondering if he's not on to something here.

Now, the whole book isn't all political rantings and ravings. There are some really funny stories about man buns, friends of the band, and an appearance he had on Tosh.O that had me in stitches. One thing that really impressed me is that Taylor has the ability to still inject humor when he's being quite serious about a subject and uses that to balance things out in a very happy medium.

I'm sure several people won't even read the book on the sheer principle that they feel a musician shouldn't be speaking on matters such as what Taylor addresses in "America 51" and that's fine, that's their prerogative. But it's that kind of thinking that is mentioned in the book and how detrimental it can be. There were things that he said that I didn't agree with at all and that's always the case--you don't agree with anything anyone says 100% of the time.

But if you actually take the time to read the book and put your own feelings on politics and the like aside, I think you will be pleasantly surprised with this book. I groaned when I saw the direction that the book was headed in after the first few sentences but I honestly was hooked by the time I was halfway through the first chapter. It slows down at certain parts only to ramp up again like a roller coaster getting ready to send you down a massive drop, screaming and crying out of excitement and fear. This isn't the typical format that previous Taylor books have followed but it still is a damn fun read and has its moments where you will be laughing until you cry as well as cringing like you witnessed a skateboard injury in person.

Give it a shot and if you're able to put your own feelings and outlooks aside, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised about what Mr. Taylor has to say. And who knows, you might learn something along the way and you'll definitely get lots of laughs as well.

About this Writer:
Greg Watson // Greg Watson has been hooked on the loud and heavy sounds since the summer of 1994 when he first heard the opening notes of "Operation: Mindcrime" by Queensryche. Since then his tastes have expanded and grown like the ever evolving heavy metal tree of genres. He has been an active member of Maximum Metal off and on for 10 years. In his spare time, Greg enjoys deciding the fate of his loyal subjects in the realm of Skyrim and secretly playing air keyboard to "Separate Ways" by Journey when no one is watching. He currently resides in Roanoke, VA with his wife and his metal wannabe beagle.

Maximum Metal Rating Legend - Click for Full Details
5 Excellent - Buy it and say a prayer to the metal gods that you were tuned on to this masterpiece. A classic.
4-4.5 Great - Almost perfect records but there's probably a clunker or a lacking somewhere to keep it from perfection. You won't feel bad about dropping some bones on these.
3.5 Good - Most of the record is good, but there may be some filler. This is the OK range where you'd search for the record on sale or used.
3 Average - Some good songs, some bad ones at about a half/half ratio. Could show skills but be dull overall. Redeeming qualities for indy bands are effort and passion. Majors that don't try or suck outright end up here.
2-2.5 Fair - Worth a listen, but best obtained by collectors. There is much better metal out there.
1-1.5 Bad - Major problems with music, lyrics, production, etc.
0 Terrible or an otherwise waste of your life and time.

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America 51Corey Taylor
2017
Greg Watson8/23/2017


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