Dave Brockie, better known as Oderus Urungus, the founder and lead singer of renowned Richmond, Virginia metal band GWAR, has died. He was found deceased, sitting upright, by a roommate, on Sunday evening (March 23). Brockie was 50 years old, born August 30, 1963.
A Richmond police spokesperson told CBS 6 and the Richmond Times-Dispatch that a report of a deceased individual was made at approximately 6:53 p.m. ET. Foul play is not suspected at this time and officials are waiting for the Medical Examiner’s office to 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.”
Brockie formed GWAR in 1984 and was the last original member of the horror-inspired group. Band-members adopt outlandish, other-worldly characters like Beefcake the Mighty and Balsac the Jaws of Death, and their live concerts have become notorious for carrying out satirical scenes of blood-and-gore, often involving political or pop culture figures. The self-proclaimed “Scumdogs of the Universe” have released twelve studio albums, including last year’s Battle Maximus, and were nominated twice at the Grammys. The band rocketed to stardom after being featured on Beavis & Butthead. GWAR has been a favorite at Dragon*Con for years.
According to GWAR lore, Oderus was billions of years old and hailed from the planet Scumdogia. He carried an enormous broadsword, and his mangled, devilish face was topped with a crown of horns. Brockie’s Twitter account (@TheRealOderus) was filled with the kind of in-character, debauched musings you’d expect, but he also could surprise. “The idea of Slayer protesting Westboro church dudes funeral makes about as much sense as the opposite. Hate begets hate, morons,” he said on March 22.
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