Gene Simmons has apologized after sparking anger over comments he made about Prince, in which he used the word “pathetic” to describe the late pop and rock icon’s death.

The 66-year-old outspoken Kiss rocker and reality star has said in an interview with Newsweek, posted Tuesday, “His drugs killed him….I think Prince was heads, hands and feet above all the rest of them. I thought he left [Michael] Jackson in the dust. Prince was way beyond that. But how pathetic that he killed himself. Don’t kid yourself, that’s what he did. Slowly, I’ll grant you… but that’s what drugs and alcohol is: a slow death.”

Authorities are still investigating the cause of Prince’s death. He was found dead at age 57 on April 21 at his Paisley Park studios in Minnesota. The U.S. Attorney’s office and Drug Enforcement Administration have joined the investigation. Prince died one day before meeting with a California doctor who specializes in addiction, The Minneapolis Star Tribune had reported.

“I just got such s–t from my family for my big mouth again,” Simmons wrote on Twitter later Tuesday. “I apologize—I have a long history of getting angry at what drugs do to the families/friends of the addicts. I get angry at drug overs because of my experience being around them coming up in the rock scene. In my experience, they’ve made my life, and the lives of their loved ones, difficult.”