For months now, Static-X’s ‘classic’ lineup of bassist Tony Campos, guitarist Koichi Fukuda and drummer Ken Jay to reunite for a reunion tour and new album and perform under the band’s original name has generated a great deal of controversy, receiving much backlash from the fanbase, according to the PRP. These decisions of a reunion tour and forthcoming album come after the absence of frontman/guitarist Wayne Static, who died as a result of drug-related death in November 2014. A portion of the band’s fanbase has been critical of their reunion due to Campos and Static’s personal issues around the time of Static’s death.
Back in the early 2010s, Static and the rest of the band decided to go on a hiatus and focus on separate, individual projects of their own. After a few years went by, Static tried to reform the Static-X band, but none of the original members wanted to comply and regroup. Instead, Static initiated that he and his solo band go on a world tour under the Static-X band name. Campos, who owned 50% of the band at the time, entered a legal agreement with Static that would let him and his solo band use the Static-X name as long as Campos was paid X-amount of money. They agreed, and it was a done deal.
Well towards the end of 2012, Static ended up getting really ill and was unable to perform, so he decided to take time off. This didn’t sit well with Campos because he wasn’t being paid for his share of the band. And if Static wasn’t able to pay, the deal was over with. So in June 2013, Static announced the originally Static-X’s band breakup.
According to another The PRP article, the band had announced their forthcoming record, Project Regeneration would be experiencing more touring and new details were shared about the vocalist for the tour. The new project features final studio recordings of Static, along with the assistance of special guests for vocal arrangements. The worldwide tour will be in promotion of the new record and celebrating the 20th anniversary of the band’s platinum-selling debut album, Wisconsin Death Trip.
The band made a statement that their goal for the tour and the upcoming album was to recapture the spirit of Static and serve as a memorial for him. The band was never interested in using a hologram or Static’s pre-recorded vocals. “Static-X has always been four guys. Two guitars, bass, drums, and vocals. We didn’t want to mess with that formula. This is the most electric version of Wisconsin Death Trip 2.0 that we can imagine, without actually having Wayne here with us,” the statement said.
These announcements also premiered more audio/video footage of their unannounced fill-in for the late frontman Static, alongside the reason why the band chose to adorn their new touring vocalist in a mask that resembled Static’s trademark look. The suggestion for a mask to be utilized in remembrance of the Static was made by the new, announced touring vocalist, receiving approval from Static’s family as well. There have been rumors that the new touring vocalist will be Dope’s frontman Edsel Dope, seeing that they’re the touring band with Static-X, but nothing has been confirmed.
In another statement about the mask, the band said these parting words, “Further, he [the touring vocalist] expressed that the mask itself, along with his performance each night could act as a unique part of the memorial to Wayne… A tribute, for lack of better words.”