Jonathan Davis On His Fear To Change Korn’s Musical Direction
Korn frontman Jonathan Davis recently appeared in an interview with Metal Hammer and revealed that he was frightened when they decided to change the band’s musical direction in the past.
Korn was established in 1993 and became the pioneer of nu metal’s bringing into the mainstream. They debuted with the self-titled album in 1994 and worked with the producer Ross Robinson. The album reflected the themes like bullying and drug addiction, and the first single, ‘Blind,’ achieved success on the charts of Canada and New Zealand.
The debut record was followed by ‘Life is Peachy,’ which was released in 1996. It achieved considerable success by peaking at number 3 on the Billboard 200 and number 1 in New Zealand despite receiving mixed reviews from critics. Ross Robinson produced the album as he did in the previous one.
The nu-metal band experienced its initial mainstream success with the 1998 record ‘Follow the Leader.’ The album reached number 1 on various charts, including the Billboard 200, by selling thousands of copies immediately after its release. The singles ‘Got the Life’ and ‘Freak On a Leash’ were charted on multiple lists.
However, Korn went through a change in this album regarding their musical direction. Although the members were satisfied with the works they created with the producer Robinson in the previous albums, they wanted to collaborate with different names on this record. The successful album was produced by Steve Thompson, who has worked with Guns N’ Roses, and Toby Wright, who has contributed to Alice In Chains. Robinson also continued working with Korn as Jonathan’s vocal coach.
In a recent interview, Jonathan Davis said the transition was scary as they left their comfort zone by changing their direction; however, they needed to create something different. As the singer revealed, his vocal coach Robinson was using different methods to hurt him to make him do an excellent job while singing, and Davis began to be bothered. After a while, Davis even thought this was nonsense, as he noted.
Jonathan Davis said the following about their change:
“It was really scary, but we knew we had to do something different. ‘Freak On A Leash’ was where Ross was digging his nails into my back! That was some weird shit, real f*cked-up. Once I got to that moment, I was like, ‘I’m done with this; this is f*cking stupid.”
In the following album, ‘Issues,’ the band worked with the producer Brendan O’Brien and reached number 1 on the Billboard 200. The following one, ‘Untouchables,’ which was produced by the band and Michael Beinhorn, gained them mainstream success.