13:50 GMT12 April 2021
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    American rapper Lil Nas X has earlier announced a pair of satanic-themed shoes following the release of his “Montero” music video that features the artist falling to hell and giving a lap dance to the devil.

    Daniel Greenberg, a co-founder of MSCHF, the company that created the viral “satan shoes” in collaboration with rapper Lil Nas X, explained whose drop of blood is mixed with the red ink inside each pair’s transparent soles.

    “Myself and some of my co-workers,” the co-founder of the Brooklyn-based collective said, according to Complex.

    The viral pentagram-toting sneakers are basically Nike Air Max 97s, modified by MSCHF in several ways, such as the addition of inverted cross on the tags, a written reference to the Bible verse Luke 10:18, and the soles being filled with red ink that also allegedly has a drop of human blood in it.

    Greenberg did not disclose how he and his colleagues collected the blood, saying only it was “not the best way, to say the least”.

    “I could tell you; it’s just kind of graphic. But, like, not by any means a good way of doing it,” he added.

    Greenberg also said that one of the benefits of using human blood in the product is that it avoids complaints from animal-rights groups.

    The creative group, however, did not avoid provoking outrage from Christian activists and this is not the first time MSCHF’s products have sparked a backlash. In 2019 the company released Jesus-inspired custom Nike Air Max 97 sneakers that had holy water in their soles.

    This time, however, the religious-themed product’s viral effect was even stronger. South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem entered a spat with Lil Nas X over the shoes, throwing a Bible verse at him and talking about a “fight for the soul of our nation”.

    “We’re prepared for people to be upset with it, but it’s also not something that we predominantly mind,” Greenberg said. “We say a lot internally, we’re OK being loved or hated, we just don’t want apathy,” he added.

    There was no apathy indeed on the sneakers’ release date this Monday at 11 am EST, as all of the 666 individually numbered pairs were reportedly sold out for $1,018 per pair in mere minutes.

    Despite being based on the classic Nike model, the sportswear company has denied any involvement in the project.

    “We do not have a relationship with Little Nas X or MSCHF,” Nike said in a statement to NBC. “Nike did not design or release these shoes and we do not endorse them.”

    Greenberg believes selling the customised devil-themed is completely legal since they use legitimate Nikes for their base.

    However, Nike has already filed a federal trademark infringement lawsuit against MSCHF, complaining about “confusion and dilution occurring in the marketplace, including calls to boycott Nike in response to the launch of MSCHF's Satan Shoes based on the mistaken belief that Nike has authorised or approved this product”.

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