On Sunday night, Iowa metal institution Slipknot and rapper-turned-pop-punker Machine Gun Kelly headlined the two biggest stages at Riot Fest. The two acts played at the same time, and MGK took the opportunity to direct some snark at Slipknot: “Hey, you all know what I’m really happy that I’m not doing? Being 50 years old, wearing a fuckin’ weird mask on a fuckin’ stage. Fuckin’ shit.” But this wasn’t a garden-variety case of one festival act shit-talking the festival act performing at the same time. It turns out that MGK and Slipknot leader Corey Taylor have history.
Earlier this year, Taylor reportedly bashed MGK in a podcast interview, though he didn’t mention MGK’s name: “I [hate] the artists who failed in one genre and decided to go rock, and I think he knows who he is.” On Twitter last night, Machine Gun Kelly claimed that Taylor was only mad because he’d recorded a guest vocal for MGK’s 2020 rock-crossover album Tickets To My Downfall and MGK hadn’t used it:
very odd that when an artist talks shit, and i respond, i’m the bad guy.
corey did a verse for a song on tickets to my downfall album, it was fucking terrible, so i didn’t use it.
he got mad about it, and talked shit to a magazine about the same album he was almost on.
yalls stories are all off.
just admit he’s bitter.
don’t hate on the youth
Taylor responded by challenging Machine Gun Kelly’s story: “I didn’t do the track because I don’t like when people try to ‘write’ for me. I said NO to THEM.” Taylor also shared screenshots of what appears to be an email exchange between himself and Machine Gun Kelly collaborator Travis Barker.
In the first of those emails, Barker writes, “we love it,” and he shares some notes from Machine Gun Kelly: “can u tell him he fuckin killed it and im stoked and HONORED he is even fuckin on it wtf !!!!… fuck yea tell him he rocks.” Kelly also writes, “I sent Corey and idea for the second half of his verse and he can obviously say fuck it but it would be sick to see if it inspired anything or if he could try it like that.”
In the screenshotted response, Taylor writes, “I listened to the ideas and to be honest, I don’t think I’m the right guy for the track. Nothing personal, I just think if this is what MGK is looking for, someone else is the guy to do it. It’s ALL good, and I’m stoked for him- I hope you guys find the right fit for it. Hope you understand and I wish you guys the best with it.”
Checkmate. Read our We’ve Got A File On You interview with Taylor here.