Since the untimely passing of bassist Paul Gray earlier this year, Slipknot have been surrounded by the question of whether they would press on without one of their founding members. The simple answer is yes -- at least in terms of playing big overseas festivals next year, as the band has been confirmed for Graspop Metal Meeting in Belgium in June, UK's Sonisphere in July and Brazil's Rock in Rio in September.

In a recent interview with NME, frontman Corey Taylor said he believed Gray "would want us to keep going," later adding, "There are some moments that are more somber than others. But when you are here to entertain, you don't wanna spend too much time in melancholy. There is time to reflect, there is time to celebrate, and for me, dealing with loss, it's important to celebrate life and not revel in death, to be honest."

Now the question of new material from the groundbreaking band seems to be where things get confusing, or at least where there might be division among Taylor and drummer Joey Jordison. Since the loss of Gray, who died from an accidental overdose of morphine, the two have given varying updates on the band, with Jordison holding steadfastly that a new record was in the works, saying "I think it's gonna be a really, really great record because everyone's really involved in the process."

Taylor, who initially said he doubted the future of Slipknot, responded to Jordison via a Twitter update denying any songwriting. "Like I said, shows? Yes. Album? No. Baby steps, people. For the fans."

The apparent lack of communication and public disagreements from one of metal's biggest acts have many wondering about the band's future. No matter how you analyze the quotable chatter, the fact remains: We may be a long way off from a new Slipknot record.