A lawyer representing Chris Fehn in his legal dispute with Slipknot said the band had treated the percussionist like a “second-class citizen” and the situation had come to a head after he was presented with a “take it or leave it” deal.

Fehn launched a lawsuit against group leaders Corey Taylor and Shawn Crahan, plus others, claiming he’d been underpaid for some time as a result of not being told about a series of other business entities created around the band. Slipknot said in a statement that Fehn was no longer part of the band, although one of his attorneys, Joseph Dunne, said this week that Fehn remained a member and wanted to keep things that way.

“in order for Chris to continue to participate in the band and attend recording sessions for the album that the band is working on, he was presented with a very onerous take-it-or-leave-it, you're-not-an-equal-member-of-the-band-type proposal,” said another of his lawyers, Joel B. Rothman, told in a new interview with Rock Feed (via Blabbermouth).

“If you had spent 20 years of your life devoted to an enterprise like Slipknot, where you had given your heart, your soul, your sweat, your blood, your tears to making the band the best it could be the way that so many of its fans love, and then you were told you were a second-class citizen … I doubt that anyone who's listening to this would feel any differently from the way Chris felt, which was that he wasn't being given the respect that he deserved.”

You can listen to the full interview below:

Rothman added that he’d compared notes with Fehn’s other attorneys, and they’d collectively concluded that “Chris, from the beginning of Slipknot, was treated like an equal, and it wasn't until later, after the band had experienced success, that they began to treat Chris like less than that equal. And we looked at that, and we said, ‘Well, that doesn't seem fair.’" He emphasized: “he began as an equal partner in the band in the beginning, and he should continue to be treated in that same fashion."

Rothman said that Slipknot’s management company had also been representing certain members in separate arrangements, with the result that “loyalties to individual members interfere with their ability to represent the whole band.”

Slipknot will release their sixth studio album on Aug. 9. While its title hasn't yet been revealed, it's been speculated among fans that it's to be named We Are Not Your Kind. This week, the band teased a minute-long clip of newly-recorded vocals, which you can hear below:

 

Top 50 Metal Albums of All Time