Tuesday, May 25, 2010

R.I.P: Paul Gray (1972-2010)

It's sure been a banner Spring for death aficionados. Guru, Dio and now Paul Gray have passed on. Tragic all around, but somewhat more (or less, depending on how you look at it) this time, as it appears that this was another needle-driven passing. Why guys can't just be rich rock stars anymore, I'm not sure, but Gray had been known to have been battling with drugs before, having passed out behind the wheel of his Porsche at an Iowa intersection with needles in open view a couple years previous, but to the best of my knowledge he had stayed off the crime radar in recent times.

Other than that "Fuck You" song off the first record, I was never the hugest fan of Slipknot, but they seemed to be decent dudes and certainly brought it. Nine masked guys going apeshit on stage with pyro for days soundtracked by mental cased music is the best way to enjoy the young peoples metal, and Slipknot were pretty unfuckwithable with theirs. Gray was one of the only original Slipknot members and the only one to play the same instrument for the duration of his tenure. He had chops as well as signature Peavey (based on the ATK) that was actually designed for B tuning. Cool, and So Hideous friendly (although I/We rep for A#...) His death came two days before he was due to to join Ripper Owens, Andreas Kisser and Paul Bostaph to tour Asia and Europe as metal cover project Hail! (replacing Dave Ellefson upon his return to Megadeth) but has been replaced at the 11th hour with the suddenly thrash-ocentric James Lomezo. According to TMZ, Gray was found dead in an Iowa hotel with pills and a syringe nearby and left behind a pregnant wife. He was 38.


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