Kendall Jenner had the gall to wear a Slayer t-shirt and got her response through a mocking message from the band on stage with a “Kill The Kardashians” declaration. Kim Kardashian spent around $8000 for a vintage “Metal Up Your Ass” band tee from Metallica. Of course, Hetfield was publicly very understanding about the whole thing, though fans were P-Od.
After a very public stint in the psych ward at UCLA Medical Center, Life Of Pablo rapper Kanye West was spotted for the first time and snapped by paparazzi wearing a Testament t-shirt. Of course, the community had to go get feedback from the band that blazed proudly from the chest of the self-proclaimed rock star of the modern generation. So, Testament’s guitarist Alex Skolnick gave us his biting response to the whole fiasco –
Oh no he didn’t! Wait, yes he did…Goodness gracious. This whole decrepit clan must have picked up a pile of old concert t-shirts (the same pile Kourtney K’s SLAYER shirt came from) which have somehow become a ‘thing’ in trendy fashion (who’d have thought?!!). Inconceivable that any of these pop-culture vultures know who the heck any of the bands are. My guess is he thinks it’s a religious group (not the first time that’s happened) That is, if he thinks at all, which lately, seems unlikely. And I thought this time period couldn’t get any weirder…
So ICYMI, the story went hella viral and the Internet had to have a say in the matter. So Skolnick sent out a longer statement, clarifying his earlier one, though he doesn’t apologize or try to sugarcoat his words. Because, that’s the way we do it, huh –
Alright. So I posted a wiseass comment meant just for friends who tagged me on FB – wasn’t meant as an official statement but now it got picked up and is making news. Had I been asked to comment publicly I’d probably say something more like this:
I like hip-hop generally and while not a Kanye West fan, I recognize that Kanye is respected by some folks in the music industry whom I respect. Normally I’d be flattered, and appreciative from 1 artist 2 another (those who follow me outside Testament know I’m very open musically & work with artists of many genres. If Kanye genuinely knows and likes Testament – and isn’t just wearing our shirt as part of this current bizarre fad among trendy fashionistas and Hollywood types to wear old metal concert Ts – then that’s great, more power to him and respect. However, I truly doubt that’s the case (and would love to be proven wrong).
It’s not the music/artist part of the equation I have a problem with – it is the Reality TV, publicity junkie part. Kanye may consider himself an artist, which I can accept (although an artist on the level of those he compares himself to? Pablo Picasso? Sorry, not feeling it). Artistry aside, the Kardashian clan (of which he’s a part of by marriage) are not doing art – it’s the lowest form of cheap entertainment, turning people into brainless nincompoops and slowly destroying the country, a place that’s descended to the point of the majority now embracing anti-intellectualism, denying facts, disbelieving science, believing fake news, avoiding rationality, shunning critical thinking and no longer recognizing the difference between reality and reality TV (case in point: electing a Reality TV star as President, someone Kanye is now cozying up to). I find these offences so unforgivable that I cannot find enjoyment in a major celebrity and artist I’d otherwise respect (musically, at least) wearing our shirt, much as I’d like to.
So my initial response, while admittedly less eloquent, it is still an honest reflection of the moment.
We definitely see here an unrecognized philosopher who is not afraid to say it like he means it. Good for you, Skolnick!