Tributes flow for Gwar frontman Dave Brockie aka Oderus Urungus

Gwar frontman Dave Brockie – who was best known as his alter-ego Oderus Urungus – has reportedly died in Richmond, Virginia, aged 50.

While management has yet to issue an official comment, local police confirmed that a 50-year-old musician, believed to be Brockie, was found dead by a roommate between 3pm and 7pm local time. The news was first reported by Style Weekly, an alternative news, culture and opinion website based in Richmond, where Brockie formed Gwar in 1984. For the next 30 years he adopted the persona of a 43-billion-year-old intergalactic humanoid barbarian from the fictitious planet of Scumdogia.

Mobile Deathcamp – the thrash metal band founded by former Gwar member Todd Evans – confirmed the news on their official Facebook page, while another former member, Mike Bishop, paid tribute to Brockie’s “lucid wit”. “Dave was one of the funniest, smartest, most creative and energetic persons I’ve known,” he 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 humours belied a lucid wit.”

Randy Blythe of Richmond metal band Lamb Of God said he heard the news from Chris Bopst, a writer for Style Weekly and one of Gwar’s original members. “I do not know details of why he died yet, just that he passed away at home & his roommates found him,” he said 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’ – most of these people [have] 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.”

Closer to home, promoter AJ Maddah – who brought Gwar to Australia for last month’s Soundwave festival – described Brockie as “one of the nicest people I have worked with”.

Gwar created a storm of controversy, and even elicited an amusing/baffling op-ed from a group called the Australians for Constitutional Monarchy after decapitating and mutilating effigies of Tony Abbott and Queen Elizabeth on all legs of the Soundwave tour. “We were just playing our show in Brisbane and this guy with giant ears wanders out onstage and tells us to go back to Antarctica, so naturally I removed his head from his shoulders,” Brockie said in a statement issued as Oderus Urungus.

In the lead-up to the tour, he was interviewed for FL by Melbourne viking-metal outfit Barbarion, who asked him what the meaning of life was. “It’s fucked!” he said. “The meaning of life is death, OK? The meaning of life is death. It’s like death is the answer to life, the antidote. I mean life is going to kill you, you are going to die, that is the end of the equation. The meaning of life is death. I don’t need to say anymore, it’s pretty fucking obvious.”


Maric Media, who did the PR for Gwar’s most recent Australian tour, told FL that management would be issuing a statement at 4am (AEST).

(Photo by MacSnaps)

Instagram tribute from Randy Blythe: