RIP: Gwar Frontman Dave Brockie, aka Oderus Urungus, Has Died
Dave Brockie, aka Oderus Urungus, the founder and lead singer of weirdo-metal champions GWAR, has died at 50 years old. According to Seattle Weekly, Brockie’s roommates reportedly found his body at his Virginia home Sunday evening (March 23). Richmond police have confirmed the news, though no cause of death has been listed.
Brockie, who professionally went by the name Oderus Urungus, founded the group in 1984. GWAR spent the next 3 decades building a reputation for supplementing its music with truly bizarre costumes covered with fake blood and otherworldly theatrics. The Grammy-nominated band, which released its 13th album in 2013, recently returned from a small tour in Japan.
Dave's passing is a true loss to the music community. Beneath all the crazy musical theatrics and fake blood, Dave was widely known as a deeply kind individual.
"I wish it was a joke," former GWAR bassist Chris Bopst, a music writer for Style Weekly, told the site. "Everyone is in shock."
"At approximately 6:53 p.m. on Sunday, Richmond Police were called to a residence in the 4800 block of West Seminary Avenue for a report of a deceased individual," a Richmond Police spokeswoman said in a statement. "When officers arrived, they found David M. Brockie, 50, deceased inside the home. Detectives do not suspect foul play at this time and the Medical Examiner's Office will determine cause of death."
"Dave was one of the funniest, smartest, most creative and energetic persons I've known," former GWAR bassist Mike Bishop told Style Weekly. "He was brash sometimes, always crass, irreverent, he was hilarious in every way. But he was also deeply intelligent and interested in life, history, politics and art. His penchant for scatological humors belied a lucid wit. He was a criminally underrated lyricist and hard rock vocalist, one of the best, ever! A great frontman, a great painter, writer, he was also a hell of a bass guitarist. I loved him. He was capable of great empathy and had a real sense of justice."
Vocalist Randy Blythe of fellow Richmond, Virginia metallers Lamb of God, who toured with GWAR in 2009, wrote on Instagram: "I got a very sad call tonight from my buddy Chris Bopst, who was one of the original members of GWAR. My friend Dave Brockie, a.k.a. Oderus Urungus, the singer of GWAR, has left the building and taken off back to his home planet. He was 50 years old.
"I do not know details of why he died yet, just that he passed away at home and his roommates found him. 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.' Most of these people no idea of what they are talking about; they obviously had never met Dave. 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. I took this picture at his birthday party a few months ago — Dave kissing his Oderus birthday cake. 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. He never put much stock in 'limits.’”
"Richmond has lost one of its most creative people.
"This is a crying shame to me.
"Thank you, Brockie, for all the crazy shit you did. Thank God you existed, so you could do it and I didn't have to. It was an honor to know you, to be your Shaky Slave, to serve in the Blood Vomits along side you (let's ride!), and to be soaked by your sweet cuttlefish.
"RIP Dave Brockie. Oderus, enjoy your trip back home."
Bassist Chris Kael of Five Finger Death Punch said: "Just read about the passing of Dave Brockie — Oderus Urungus from GWAR. We had the privilege of playing with GWAR just one month ago at Soundwave festival in Australia. Dave was always right there on the side of the stage that Five Finger Death Punch were playing on — watching every band, laughing and enjoying life. As he entertained us in life, may his death remind us that life is short. Tell the ones around you that they are loved. Live life with a smile and a laugh. Just as Dave and I shared a laugh while talking at Soundwave. We love you. Each and every one of you. R.I.P. Dave Brockie — Oderus Urungus."