Slipknot’s “Snuff” Lyrics Meaning

The lyrics of Slipknot’s “Snuff” tell the sad story of an unrequited love. The narrator has found someone whom he loves so dearly and even believes that she also has strong feelings of love for him. However, this apparently isn’t the case! She has not the slightest bit of love for him. And from the lyrics, we can see that the primary reason she can’t love the narrator back is because of the extreme darkness residing in her heart and soul.

Lyrics of "Snuff"

“Snuff” is based on a true story

According to Slipknot’s Corey Taylor, this is a very personal song. He said the person he’s singing to was someone very special to him who helped him survive a really dark episode of his life. He ended up falling for her and thought she had similar feelings for him. However, at the end of the day she disappointed him in a really heartbreaking fashion. Below are the exact words Corey used in describing this song during a 2008 interview he had with Kerrang!

Corey Taylor talks about "Snuff"

What is the meaning of “Snuff” as used in the song’s title?

Despite being the song’s title, the word is never used in the lyrics. Snuff is actually a kind of smokeless tobacco people snort into their nasal cavity because doing so gives them a pleasurable sensation. And it is likely that Corey is referring to the addressee as his “snuff” (i.e. someone who brought him great pleasure).

Writing Credits

Corey Taylor is actually the primary writer of this song. He and the rest of his band members produced “Snuff” along with noted record producer Dave Fortman.

Release Date of “Snuff”

Slipknot released “Snuff” via Roadrunner Records on the 28th of September, 2009. It was the fifth and final single from their fourth studio album (“All Hope Is Gone”).

A very special song

This song is very special to Slipknot considering it was the final single they released before the tragic death of their beloved bassist Paul Gray. Gray actually died less than a year after the song was released. Corey went on to pay an emotional tribute to Gray with an acoustic version of the song. He would perform this emotional version on many of his solo shows.

18 Responses

  1. Brendon says:

    You ever just have to say “that’s enough”? Say it fast like you really talk. Snuff

  2. A Devil Within says:

    I just learned Corey’s acoustic version, I love playing it and love the song.

  3. Anonymous says:

    WOW a SNUFF FILM is an obviously illegal video of someone being murdered. WOW. You completely missed the point and the true darkness of the song tho it’s in the video. WOW. Ya it’s a smokeless tobacco too but cmon. Really?? An easy fact check is 8MM, the 1999 Nicolas Cage movie, but I mean it was a thing way before that.

    • Anonymous says:

      Thank you for that obvious point… and it’s that kind of oblique darkness that sucks people into songs like this. *Maybe* it’s about snuff (ever tried Copenhagen smokeless? It’s like worm dirt), but *maybe* it’s about murder on film, Corey knows. Either way… steer your life away from this junk, especially if you’re young.

      • Metalhead life says:

        metal is life especially for a 14 year old

        • Jimmy says:

          Music is life for a 14 year old. Not metal for me in my opinion.
          For me, Jimi Hendrix and Red Hot Chili Peppers all the way.

      • Anonymous says:

        Really ? Dude…. it’s a song ! Not go take your dental floss theory and kick rocks. Snuff is an excellent song.

        • Kc says:

          The song is about a girl he had deep feelings for. He thought she felt the same way. She helped him through some sh-t in his life, but realized she didn’t feel the same way about him….so snuff gives u great pleasure when sniffed, like a sensation through the nose. So she was that great feeling he got, …..she left him on to far…that hurts so much, . Anyways have a good night, Much love 💕

    • Dee says:

      Snuff also means to extinguish. Like a fire with wind. So Corey might have named it Snuff because his unrequited love for the girl with no heart snuffed him out emotionally. Or it could have multiple meanings on purpose

      • Anonymous says:

        There is many layers to the song and it’s hard for him to sing the song. You need to acknowledge the first comment by Corey that he was in a very dark place and was likely had nothing to live for so at this point the title is Snuff in terms not wanting to be alive.
        It evolves when he is essentially made the decision to take his own life and he is ‘saved’ by a women who becomes his soul reason for living. Their relationship isn’t exactly equal in terms of how they view each other. While she does have feelings for him she has her own issues that mean she will never be able to be what Corey wanted her to be. How he saw her as this perfect angel forming the light of his life in her mind she was struggling with her own personal demons. She realises that she has to deal with her own issues so has to snuff out the light which Corey is being blinded by and can’t see the reality of her situation.
        In breaking this mistaken facade that Corey had of her and snuffing/diminishing the light he saw to see once again return to the darkness snuffing out all light in his life.
        While they are able to accept they will always love each other it’s a fantasy and they both have to accept that and move on while also dealing with that darkness that Corey had initially with her in a similar place but for different reasons. They come to accept this new reality each in their own way separately then end up becoming a couple more of mutual convenience but Corey still has significant feelings for her while she doesn’t. At some point she meets someone new and moves on without really ever breaking up with Corey. Now we have the Snuff as in tobacco etc. to become a substitute for the loss he feels.
        There is a period of time where they haven’t seen or even spoke to each other when for some reason she appears back but everything has changed she is married and actually has a child and a life that she loves she found her light. Corey held on to a glimmer or light in the form of hope she would return to him. However, what he now become aware of was that it was never going to happen and she was clearly happier and better so he had to be happy for her and acknowledge he had to let her go and snuff out any possibilities of a connection between them.
        In doing this Corey snuffs out the lights and goes back to that dark place but now while he doesn’t have his own reason to go personally he understood that he had to live only to ensure that she would not have to ever deal with thoughts like guilt or remorse if he did take his own life her new happy life can’t be corrupted by that taint hence while he can’t and will never have any form of relationship with her; he has to live for her.
        Yeah this song is Dark complex and in terms of Corey he likely still actually even now has feelings for this woman that he knows he can’t ever have a relationship with but also can’t be the catalyst which causes any harm to her or the happy life she has now..

        Is that complex and twisted enough for you?? This song is very very emotional and raw for corey and this is why he really finds it hard to sing after all he still loves this woman and likely always will. The song takes him back through all the hurt and events of the events that transpired between them to the reality of now and the situation he finds himself in.

  4. Cammie says:

    I love your voice, the emotion you have and the beautiful but sad lyrics. I can understand some in personal ways myself. Keep the music coming.
    And Remember Revelations 21:4

  5. reyan says:

    Corey Taylor is easily one of the greatest metal vocalists, especially in psychosocial how he goes from metal screaming to singing

  6. Rizz says:

    I love this song it makes me feel a lot of emotions: sadness, regret, relief. It makes me feel not alone in heartbreak. I understand him so much. Its a great song and i love listening to it on repeat.

  7. Roosta says:

    MK Ultra is a Hell-of-a Drug. A Pretty dark place.

  8. Anonymous says:

    How is this Slipknots slowest song but heaviest.

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