Lead singer Corey Taylor (from Kerrang! July 19, 2008): "This is the slow one. It's another personal one. Again, not naming names, it's about someone who helped me through a lot and I thought she felt the same way that I did and then she really let me down. At the same time, it was good that she did, because it was that final push to me figuring out myself. The lyrics are pretty self-explanatory."
This song is about how the protagonist's soul is too dark to let love in, telling somebody to get away from them. It's dark and brooding, representing the pits of depression or at least the bottom of the cycle in a manic-depressive. Slipknot being a particularly dark Nu-Metal band, it's pretty typical.
In the short-film video, the white-haired desk clerk with the dapper bow-tie behind that sheet of glass is none other than actor Malcolm McDowell - best known as the lead droog in Stanley Kubrick's A Clockwork Orange. O my brothers, this has been a most exquisitely horrorshow moment of fannish squee.
Despite Slipknot having a somewhat stumbling chart record - doing far better on the UK singles' charts than in their home country - their albums continued to sell gold and platinum worldwide. "Snuff" comes from their 2008 album All Hope Is Gone, which ranked a couple of fewer platinums than their previous albums but sold gold and platinum in more countries worldwide than ever before, also hitting #1 on album charts in 5 countries. This indicates that maybe Slipknot is headed for "cult" status, dodging mainstream success but being in for a very loyal niche popularity. Even in their home town of Des Moines, Iowa, they seldom make news.
It also says something that one of those #1 album sales happened in Sweden, home to some of the most distinguished metal bands in history and arguably one of the birthplaces of death metal. They take their metal very, very seriously in Scandinavia.
The word "snuff" originally meant a tin of crushed tobacco leaves, meant to be nasally inhaled, which practice swept the world (especially Europe and Asia) by the 17th century. As the general rabble smoked tobacco, snuff became the upper-crust way to enjoy nicotine.
Veteran singer Frank Watkinson uploaded a stripped back version
to YouTube in August 2020. His rendition, which transforms Slipknot's emotional song into an acoustic-folk tearjerker, went viral late in the year.