Guitarist Josh Rand says that STONE SOUR is still on hiatus, more than five years after the release of the band’s last full-length album of original material.
Rand touched upon STONE SOUR‘s status in an interview this past Thursday (August 4) prior to a performance by his new band THE L.I.F.E. PROJECT at xBk Live in Des Moines, Iowa. Asked by Andy Hall of the Des Moines radio station Lazer 103.3 if there are any updates on STONE SOUR months after Josh said in a previous interview that the band was on hiatus, the guitarist responded: “That’s basically still going on. Obviously, Corey [Taylor, STONE SOUR and SLIPKNOT singer]… SLIPKNOT is releasing a record in two months, so there’ll be a full tour cycle of that. And then we’ll see.”
Rand‘s latest comments come six months after Taylor said that STONE SOUR was “on the back burner” while he focused all of his attention on SLIPKNOT and his solo career. A year and a half after announcing in an interview that STONE SOUR had “run its course,” the SLIPKNOT and STONE SOUR frontman elaborated on the latter band’s status during an appearance on SiriusXM‘s “Trunk Nation With Eddie Trunk”. He said: “It’s on the back burner. It’s just one of those things where my mind and my heart are in a different direction. And that’s cool.
“I wish everybody in STONE SOUR all the best,” he continued. “I still talk to almost all of ’em. But sometimes you’ve just gotta do what’s best for your heart, and that’s what I’m doing. So STONE SOUR‘s on the back burner. But I’m also doing a ton of music. And like I’ve shown in [my] solo show, if you wanna hear that stuff, that’s a great place to hear it ’cause I do a ton of STONE SOUR, I do a ton of SLIPKNOT, do a ton of covers, do a ton of originals for the solo stuff. It’s a great show.”
STONE SOUR has been off the road and out of sight since completing the touring cycle for its last studio album, 2017’s “Hydrograd”. Taylor has been working with SLIPKNOT since then, as well as making his debut solo album, “CMFT”. A STONE SOUR live album, “Hello, You Bastards: Live In Reno”, came out in December 2019.
In August 2020, Taylor said that he was open to doing more recording and touring with STONE SOUR in the future. But he admitted that there had “been some contention here and there” between the members of the band in the past and added that it was “time” for him to “step away” and pursue his solo project for a while.
In June 2020, Corey told “Trunk Nation With Eddie Trunk” about STONE SOUR: “If someday we wanna get back together and do some stuff, it’ll be bigger than it was. But for right now, we’re all kind of focused on kind of doing our own thing. But you never say never in this business.”
In June 2021, Rand told MACHINE HEAD frontman Robb Flynn‘s “No Fuckin’ Regrets With Robb Flynn” podcast about when fans can expect to see the follow-up to “Hydrograd”: “There’s no timetable for a return, ’cause, honestly, between Corey doing his solo thing, now me working on THE L.I.F.E. PROJECT stuff, Roy [Mayorga, drums] working on MINISTRY… So, there’s just no timetable.
“I made a comment [in 2020], and it kind of backfired, because of how I said [STONE SOUR was on an] indefinite hiatus, which, if you know the definition, actually just means it’s a long period of time with no timetable of return. I don’t know if everybody thought I said ‘infinite’ instead of ‘indefinite.’ [Laughs] All of a sudden, the band was, like, over. It was, like, ‘Oh my God! It’s over.’ All I was saying was there’s no timetable. It’s no different than what we’ve done in the past. It’s just gonna be a longer break.”
According to Rand, he and his STONE SOUR bandmates “needed to branch out”, “try different shit” and “work with different people” before regrouping to work on new STONE SOUR music. “And then whenever that time is that we get back together, it’ll actually be what is best for STONE SOUR,” he explained. “There’s no doubt about it in my mind. Just having these different experiences for all of us instead of just running that same cycle. I think more so with Corey and myself — like I said, he got to do a solo record where he’s doing a different style of music than anybody would have thought of or that wouldn’t have fit in STONE SOUR or SLIPKNOT. For myself, working with somebody that’s not Corey and Roy. So there’s a growth that will be there that we’ll ultimately get which will benefit the band. I know some people might not be stoked that it’s gonna be who knows when, but it needed to happen, and that’s what’s best for everybody involved.”
Asked how he and the rest of STONE SOUR made the decision to take a longer-than-usual break this time around, Josh said: “I think at the end of the tour cycle, we had a good idea of what was going to happen, where [Corey] wanted to do the solo record. For myself, it’s something I kicked around — just having some of the songs that I would musically write that I would never submit into STONE SOUR ’cause I don’t feel like it fits at all. So I was kind of on that path to begin with. I just kind of got an extra nudge with him doing his solo record of, ‘Hey, this is probably the time to do this.’ And then we got hit with the pandemic, which then really locked me into the house. And I was, like, ‘What else am I gonna do?’ So I just started writing and working on playing piano. I did a bunch of stuff on piano, which some of it will come out, and some of it, it’s, like, ‘No.’ I’ll [it] for myself. And that’s basically what we did. So we had a good idea, I think, that we were gonna take a longer break at the end of ’19. I think towards the end, all of us were just burnt.”