Slayer have shot down suggestions that the Kardashians fuelled $10 million of merchandise sales on their farewell tour, after Kendall Jenner was pictured wearing one of the thrash metal band’s t-shirts.
Model and reality star Jenner was first seen sporting the band’s iconic logo in 2016, only a year after guitarist Gary Holt was pictured at one of the band’s gigs wearing a t-shirt bearing the phrase “Kill The Kardashians” on the front.
As the thrash metal icons prepare to play the final leg of their farewell tour, the band’s management insist that the high-profile endorsement hasn’t sparked the windfall in their merch sales.
“As this is Slayer’s final tour, more fans likely want something to remember the experience, so more merch is sold, and this is a very extensive itinerary, even for Slayer,” their publicist Heidi Robinson-Fitzgerald told CNBC.
Pollstar first reported the huge merchandise sales last week, with close friends of the band also dismissing suggestions that the Kardashians were behind the rise.
“You’re not supposed to see Slayer shirts on Kardashians, or basketball players rocking Slayer T-shirts as they walk into the arena on TV. That wasn’t supposed to happen,” close friend Ernie Gonzalez said.
“If you said that 30 years ago, nobody could have fathomed that. The awesome thing is they never had to sacrifice any artistic integrity, never tried to tone themselves down to conform or meet the standards of what the music business feels is the best path to success.”
Holt was seen wearing the “Kill the Kardashians” T-shirt as recently as last weekend at Slayer’s Rock in Rio performance – and previously said he “fucking hates their guts”.
But David Hooper, the host of the Music Business Radio show, warns that the band should warm to the idea of non-fans wearing their merch if they wish to remain commercially successful after retirement.
“A few years ago, I was talking to a lady in a RUN-DMC shirt,” he said. “I mentioned to her that I had worked doing promotion for them. She told me she had no idea of the music they did.“
Last month, Slayer announced details of new live film ‘The Relentless Killogy’ and an accompanying live album.