The identity of Static-X’s touring vocalist has been at the centre of much speculation ever since Tony Campos, Koichi Fukuda and Ken Jay announced the return of Static-X.
The mystery mask-wearing singer has been with the band on their Wisconsin Death Trip 20th anniversary tour – a tribute to late frontman Wayne Static – and it had been rumoured that the vocalist was Dope frontman Edsel Dope.
Last week, Danish website Metal A Day posted what they claimed was side-by-side images of Dope and the mystery vocalist and pointed to the fact that both have similar neck tattoos.
But Edsel has now issued a statement calling the speculation a “Scooby-Doo scavenger hunt,” adding that it’s all too easy for someone to Photoshop a tattoo on to the image of another person.
In a lengthy statement, Dope says: “I have quietly sat through all of this speculation and have thoroughly enjoyed the ride. Yesterday’s internet eruption reminded me of an episode of Scooby-Doo.
"It’s incredible how far some people will go to get attention or clicks, so let me remind you how easy it is to slap a little tribal neck tattoo on to someone in Photoshop."
He adds: “I’m honoured for myself and for my band Dope to be part of this 20th anniversary celebration, along with this unbelievable, traveling memorial to our old friend Wayne Static.
“Wayne is currently on the minds and in the hearts of the metal community in a very unique and special way. His memory and legacy is more celebrated than it has ever been before. I personally get to see the joy, the tears, and the incredible sense of healing that is occurring on the faces and in the hearts of Static-X fans, each and every night, around the world.
“I’m not attempting to be a spokesperson for Static-X, but I will share that I have personally met Wayne’s parents and siblings, as they have attended a number of these shows. I have personally seen their tears of joy and their expressions of gratitude and approval for the way that Tony, Ken, Koichi and Xer0 are celebrating the music and memorialising the life and legacy of their son and sibling, Wayne Wells Static.”
Dope then includes a photo that he took of drummer Jay embracing Static’s father – an image which also includes Campos, Static’s mother, siblings and friends.
“Words cannot express the love and respect that I’ve experienced out here,” says Dope.
He adds: “It’s one thing to go on a Scooby-Doo scavenger hunt, or to use Photoshop to attempt to prove whatever you are trying to spin, but it’s entirely different when trolls, masquerading as journalists, spew their ignorant, hateful words towards something that is so incredibly personal.
“Anyone with the nerve to throw virtual tomatoes at a traveling memorial, that has been orchestrated and supported by the family, loved ones, and long-time friends of the deceased should be absolutely ashamed of themselves.”
Dope concludes the statement by including an picture of himself while watching Static-X onstage.
Earlier this month, Static-X shared a video clip of their new single Hollow, which will feature on their album Project Regeneration, which is set to arrive on May 29, 2020.
The original plan for the record was to have several guest vocalists join Campos, Fukuda and Jay, but after uncovering isolated vocal recordings by Static, the decision was taken to have his voice appear on the majority of album tracks.