Perhaps the most perplexing news story in recent memory is the resurgence of clowns: People dressed as the once-comical characters have been wandering American towns, scaring locals and even prompting the discussion of the topic during a White House press briefing. Now, Shawn Crahan — the co-founder of heavy metal band Slipknot who’s better known to fans as Clown — has taken action.
NME reports that in a new interview, singer Corey Taylor announced Clown has changed his moniker to Mime until further notice. “Even our dear Clown has downgraded himself to Mime, in order to distance himself from these hedonistic doppelgängers until the coast is clear,” Taylor told the BBC2’s comedy show No Such Thing As The News. He also added, “Remember, a real clown doesn’t need a knife to intimidate — just a bat and a good cold stare.”
Slipknot’s decision to weigh in on the clown craze is just the latest example of the band grabbing headlines in 2016, from Taylor’s decision to smack a phone from a texting fan’s hands to the group’s weighty condemnations of racism in the metal community and North Carolina’s reviled bathroom law. Taylor’s clown comments also place him in the growing group of celebrities — like Stevie Nicks and Stephen King — who have spoken out about the peculiar trend.