Tony Campos has explained STATIC-X's decision to enlist a vocalist who wears a mask in the likeness of late frontman Wayne Static during the band's current reunion tour.
The North American trek, which celebrates the 20th anniversary of STATIC-X's platinum-certified "Wisconsin Death Trip" album and pays homage to Static, features co-headliner DEVILDRIVER and support from DOPE.
While the identity of STATIC-X's touring singer has not been officially revealed, strong rumors suggest that DOPE frontman Edsel Dope is pulling double duty during the trek and performing with bassist Campos, drummer Ken Jay and guitarist Koichi Fukuda.
Speaking to the "Everblack" podcast, Campos said that finding the "right guy" to front STATIC-X on the anniversary tour was "the big hurdle. But once we figured that out, then we started trying to figure out, 'How do we represent Wayne in a cool way that he would think was cool?'" he explained (hear audio below). "And we started thinking about all those t-shirt designs that we had of skulls with Wayne's hair and beard, and how to bring that to the stage. And I think the mask came out pretty cool, in a cool way to represent Wayne, and I know Wayne would have thought it was cool. And then keeping the singer's identity anonymous also keeps the focus on remembering Wayne and remembering the original lineup of the band and the first record, and it keeps the focus on that instead of having a 'Van Hagar' situation. We didn't wanna present it [as] 'Here's STATIC-X with their new singer.' It's not what this is about and it's not what we're trying to do. So I think the mask, it helps accomplish that."
STATIC-X kicked off its reunion tour on June 18 in Tempe, Arizona.
"Project Regeneration", featuring the last recordings of Static, will be released later this year. The rest of the group's original lineup will also be featured on the album and in the music videos.
STATIC-X is currently focused on finishing 12 tracks for "Project Regeneration", with almost all of them set to feature Wayne's lead vocals.
STATIC-X is in the process of finalizing a label partner in order to ensure that "Project Regeneration" will be promoted and distributed worldwide, just like all of the band's previous albums.
Last fall, STATIC-X released a teaser featuring clips from a brand-new music video, as well as five new STATIC-X tracks — "Road To Hell", "Something Of My Own", "Terminator Oscillator", "Hollow" and "Disco Otsego" — along with a personal message from Campos about the inspiration behind "Project Regeneration".
Wayne Static died in November 2014 after mixing Xanax and other powerful prescription drugs with alcohol, according to the coroner's report. The 48-year-old, whose real name was Wayne Richard Wells, was found dead in his Landers, California home.
Static founded STATIC-X in 1994 and achieved commercial success with "Wisconsin Death Trip", which included the rock radio hit "Push It".