On June 28, Lamb of God frontman Randy Blythe was arrested in Prague and charged with manslaughter in connection with a concertgoer's death from injuries he allegedly sustained at a 2010 Lamb of God concert in the Czech Republic. As of July 3, Blythe is still being held in custody despite posting bail.
Although Lamb of God's management has been mostly silent on the subject—they issued a succinct but strong denial of the manslaughter accusation last Friday and said "nothing more will be released" until the investigation yields more conclusive information—Blythe's metal community colleagues have been very vocal in supporting him.
"He didn't 'slaughter' anyone," Disturbed frontman David Draiman wrote on Twitter. "The kid jumped on stage and started a brawl, and Randy defended himself. That his life was lost in the process is truly unfortunate, but Randy is my friend and he's no murderer."
Draiman placed the incident in the context of the onstage murder of Pantera/Damageplan guitarist Dimebag Darrell in 2004, who was rushed by an audience member and shot during a concert in Ohio. "You have to understand that ever since Dimebag Darrell was assaulted, shot, and murdered on stage by a 'fan,' all of us have been very defensive/cautious of anyone jumping up on stage. I'm not saying that it's OK, or justified, or anything like that, only that it's an unfortunate/tragic set of circumstances. I know Randy's intention was not to kill the kid."
Anthrax's Scott Ian echoed Draiman's sentiments on Twitter. "Now fans can see firsthand why there's no stage diving anymore. Especially in the post-Darrell world we live in. It's all fun and games until people get murdered, die and get arrested. Randy didn't cause that fan's death. That fan chose his path. People need to take responsibility for their actions no matter what the consequence. Of course it's sad that this person died, it's a tragedy, but it's not Randy's fault." Ian also wrote, "It's complete and utter bullsh*t for him to be treated like a criminal for something he didn't do."
Guitar god Slash tweeted his support for the Lamb of God singer using the trending "freerandyblythe" hashtag, which was also used by Sebastian Bach, who sent well-wishes toward Blythe and credited him as "an inspiration" for Bach's first "sober tour ever." Dream Theater co-founder Mike Portnoy tweeted a simple assessment of the situation: "This is total BS #freeRandyBlythe."
Let us know what you think of the situation in the comments below.
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