Heavy metal fans are in mourning. David Brockie, the founder and lead singer of the band Gwar, was found dead in his Richmond, Va. home on Sunday, March 23, authorities confirmed to Richmond alt newspaper StyleWeekly. The singer, who went by the stage name of "Oderus Urungus" for the theatrical, costume-wearing band, was 50 years old.
A Richmond Police Department member told StyleWeekly that Brooke was found by his roommate Sunday afternoon, and that they "do not suspect foul play at this time," though a cause of death is pending.
"Dave was one of the funniest, smartest, most creative and energetic persons I've known," former Gwar bassist Mike Bishop said in a statement. "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."
Brockie founded Gwar back in 1984, and the intense, Grammy-nominated group released its 13th album just last year.
"I wish it was a joke," former band member Chris Bopst told Style Weekly. "Everyone is in shock."