Listen you, former Child of the* Korn*. We know you were there, back then, baggy-trousered and craving the permission from mother dearest to let your botheringly straight hair dirty itself into dreadlocks. We know you shook what length you had to 'Blind' as vigorously as the next reformed advocate of taste, but worry not: you're among friends. We were all there. Some of us still are.
The latter fact brings us - all of us, love it or loathe it - to this: the comeback single from the recently shrunken to a quartet Korn. What's changed with the departure of God-chasing Head (read that back and don't feel slightly offended)? Formula-wise, very little, yet 'Twisted Transistor' (charmingly crap title, that) is an admirably stripped-down take on the band's crunching nu-metal of the late 1990s. It bobs along quite inoffensively for three or so minutes, barking when it needs to and incorporating all manner of odd squelches and squeaks into the predictable-enough archaic riffs. Excellent production from pop powerhouses The Matrix ensures that Jonathan Davis never sounds as if he's in incurable pain (although he could quite probably do with some hemorrhoid cream). Those that've left their ill-fitting slacks scrunched in the wardrobe for some years now are unlikely to renew any significant interest in the band that soundtracked so many of their early teenage tantrums, but younger fans turned on to the Korn by their post-Millennium releases will be satisfied by this is-what-it-is effort.
What you shouldn't do, one-time nu-metalhead, is turn a nose up in Korn's direction. No, their modus operandi hasn't particularly changed, but music as unapologetically dumb as this is infinitely preferable to ninety per cent of the pseudo-intellectual freak-folk and tabloid-fodder fuckups that'll pass into 2006 as high fliers in endless Best Of lists. Don't kid yourself otherwise, kid.
5Mike Diver's Score