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Watch Machine Gun Kelly cover System Of A Down's Aerials

MGK does SOAD
(Image credit: The Howard Stern Show / Sirius XM )

We know what you're thinking: 'Haha Metal Hammer, fuck off, we're not falling for that!' But no, honestly, Machine Gun Kelly really did perform a cover of System Of A Down's Aerials on The Howard Stern Show this week.

The rapper-turned-pop punk star appeared on Stern's show on March 30, to promote his new album Mainstream Sellout, which was released on March 25. Asked by Stern to chose a cover version to perform on the show, MGK selected the SOAD track, which was the fourth single released from the LA band's 2001 album Toxicity.

"When you choose something to cover, it's gotta be a band you respect," says Stern, by way of an introduction to the performance. "And today you're going to do a cover of a band that I love, System Of A Down... that's a great band, right?"

In response, MGK says that he played with System on the European festival circuit and that the LA quartet "blew our mind[s] every night". 

Watch the performance below:

System Of A Down guitarist/vocalist Daron Malakian later commented on the performance on Instagram, writing, “I don’t know much about machinegunkelly, it’s always an honor when someone covers your song, so I can’t hate the guy for giving it a shot.”

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Kelly recently told Billboard magazine that rock music "needed a defibrillator" and claims that he played a key role in reviving the genre.

The rapper-turned-pop punk star also defended himself against accusations that he's just a cosplay punk, stating, "if I have to be a scapegoat for people’s own insecurities, whatever. I’m more punk rock than you are because at least I’m willing to put my ass on the line."

“I know it kills certain bands in that community that I got the success that I got," he said. But I earned that shit. Dude, I was fucking loading up the van with our drums and amps in 2010, driving to Indiana and Chicago, playing Warped Tour. I can tell you the fucking Wi-Fi codes to venues in Blackfoot, Idaho. Can you say that shit as a band?”

Paul Brannigan
Paul Brannigan

A music writer since 1993, formerly Editor of Kerrang! and Planet Rock magazine (RIP), Paul Brannigan is a Contributing Editor to Louder. Having previously written books on Lemmy, Dave Grohl (the Sunday Times best-seller This Is A Call) and Metallica (Birth School Metallica Death, co-authored with Ian Winwood), his Eddie Van Halen biography (Eruption in the UK, Unchained in the US) emerged in 2021. He has written for Rolling Stone, Mojo and Q, hung out with Fugazi at Dischord House, flown on Ozzy Osbourne's private jet, played Angus Young's Gibson SG, and interviewed everyone from Aerosmith and Beastie Boys to Young Gods and ZZ Top. Brannigan lives in North London and supports The Arsenal.