Pearl Jam haver esponded after they faced backlash for a recent gig poster that depicted the White House on fire, with Donald Trump’s rotting corpse being slowly devoured by a bald eagle on the White House lawn.
The poster was designed by bassist Jeff Ament and artist Bobby Brown, ahead of the iconic grunge band’s show in Missoula, Montana on Monday night (August 13).
The depiction of Donald Trump subsequently proved to be a real point of contention, as the show at the Washington-Grizzly Stadium was also a fundraiser for the re-election campaign of Democrat Senator Jon Tester.
Republican politician Matt Rosendale, who is seeking to unseat Tester as senator, described the poster as “disgusting and reprehensible”.
“It’s time for @JonTester to denounce this act of violence and blatant display of extremism”, he wrote.
This poster from Pearl Jam is disgusting and reprehensible. It depicts a dead President Trump and a burning White House. It's time for @JonTester to denounce this act of violence and blatant display of extremism! https://t.co/nIKTNPOFxX #MontanaFirst #MAGA #mtsen #mtpol
— Matt Rosendale (@MattForMontana) August 14, 2018
Fox News’ Chad Pergram said: “Campaign of GOP MT Senate candidate Matt Rosendale on Pearl Jam concert art: Jon Tester has shown he will stand w/the far-left..
“This poster from Pearl Jam is disgusting..It depicts a dead President Trump & a burning WH. It’s time for Jon Tester to denounce this act of violence.”
Now, the band have responded directly – and defended their right to criticise Trump under the US First Amendment.
“The role of artists is to make people think and feel, and the current administration has us thinking and feeling,” Jeff Ament told Rolling Stone.
“I was the sole conceptualist of this poster, and I welcome all interpretations and discourse. Love, from the First Amendment, Jeff Ament.”
In July, a giant floating balloon that depicted Donald Trump as a diaper-wearing baby was displayed outside the band’s London show, only days after it floated next to Parliament.