Update: GWAR manager Jack Flanagan has issued a statement regarding the death of Oderus Urungus. In it, Flanagan explains that medical examiners have yet to confirm the cause of death. The results can take up to three months to process and a toxicology report is currently underway.
The fifth annual GWAR-B-Q will take place Saturday, August 16 as planned. A public memorial service has been organized for the day prior. Read the full statement here.
GWAR founder and frontman Dave Brockie, aka Oderus Urungus, was found dead in his Richmond home Sunday evening. He was 50 years old. The cause of death has yet to be determined, but police report that no foul play is suspected and the band's manager confirmed "a full autopsy will be performed."
The news comes just five days after the band announced their fifth annual GWAR-B-Q scheduled for August 16th.
Brockie, with the help of a few art students, founded GWAR in 1984 at Virginia Commonwealth University. In thirty years the band released thirteen albums, the most recent, Battle Maximus, in 2013. It is unclear if the band will continue after Brockie's passing.
Fuse was lucky enough to work extensively with GWAR over the years. As Oderus and as Brockie, he displayed a kind heart and sharp sense of humor. His effortless wit was on display when we took him trick or treating in Jersey, made him our office intern for one day and invited him on ICP Theater. Watch some of the highlights of our time with Brockie/Urungus in the video tribute above.
"Dave was a creative force with great vision and was able to come up with unforgettable material on the spot whenever I worked with him," Fuse producer Alison Sandler remembers. "I'll never forget him sitting, almost childlike, criss-cross applesauce on the floor of my living room, glue gun in hand fixing his own costume while regaling us with tales of his beloved Redskins and GWAR's omnipresent issue with getting blood out of remote crevices. Then I witnessed the transformation as the costume went on and he slowly evolved from gentle Dave to the giant Oderus. It was uncanny. While the music world will miss Oderus, I will miss Dave."
Friends of the Brockie are paying their respects, with Lamb of God's Randy Blythe posting the following on Instagram:
"When someone dies, a lot of the time people will say ‘Oh, he was a unique person, really one of a kind, a true original’… Dave TRULY WAS ONE OF A KIND- I can’t think of ANYONE even remotely like him. That’s VERY HARD TO SAY. My band learned how to become a real touring band from GWAR- they gave us out first shot at this thing. I learned many things from Dave, many of which I am eternally grateful for, and some of which I am deeply ashamed of…. Right now, if I were to truly honor Dave in the way HE would do it if it were ME that had died, I would make a completely tasteless joke about his death. But I do not have the stomach for that- Dave would, but not me."