Published Mar 13, 2014In our rave review of Gorguts' 2013 album Colored Sands, we praised the Canadian death metal band's "heavy and brutal rhythms." From now on, though, those rhythms will be played by someone else, since drummer John Longstreth is no longer in the band.
Luckily, the group already have a replacement lined up, since Patrice Hamelin has previously filled in when Longstreth was too busy with other musical commitments and will do so again now. Longstreth also plays in Origin, is working on an instructional DVD and hosts drum clinics, so he was too busy to tour consistently in 2014.
In a lengthy statement, Gorguts mastermind — and sole constant member — Luc Lemay explained that the decision to replace the timekeeper wasn't personal, nor was it related to skill. Rather, Lemay feels that the other members of Gorguts should prioritize their other projects, and it was proving difficult to plan tours around Longstreth's busy calendar.
Lemay added that he and Hamelin live close to one another, and they are able to practise together on a regular basis. Read his full statement below:
I'm writing today to share with you that we will now have a new drummer sitting behind the kit for Gorguts. Unfortunately, John [Longstreth] won't be playing with us anymore.
When I first asked John, Colin [Marston, bass] and Kevin [Hufnagel, guitar] to join me to be part of Gorguts, rule number one, for me, has always been that each of their respective bands and solo career would always come first.
John, having a very busy touring schedule with Origin, brought Patrice Hamelin in the picture to replace him on more than several occasions. This being said, I was not going to get a replacement for each players. Then, as tour offers came in, we ended up playing more shows with Patrice than John. Seeing the new Origin record coming along and being released this year, John is also developing his solo career with drum clinics; I was apprehending the complexity of orchestrating schedules for future Gorguts tours. Having a very busy schedule planed for 2014 already, thing would eventually get impossible to work out.
As far as Patrice being in demand with a lot of different projects, I could have ended up with no drummer available at all to push Gorguts. Patrice and I living close to each other, we can work on music together on a weekly basis and that's an important factor for me as well. John and I shared on this way before our December tour in 2013 and I really insisted that he played that tour with us since he was part of Colored Sands since the very beginning and I wanted to perform the record live with the original lineup.
All I can say is that I had a great experience playing and making a record with John. He's a very creative, curious, polyvalent player and a great person to be around. I will miss our long conversations while driving to New York City to Colin's place.
It's not a question of personality or whatsoever; it's a question of each of us pushing our individual goals and plans as artists. I want to wish him all the best and in the end, what's most important for me, is when we'll see each other in 5, 10 or 20 years, we won't be talking about not doing a tour together in 2014... we will talk about our friendship through music and how happy and proud we are of having made a wonderful record together.