Published Nov 03, 2011Long-running metal icons Gwar are currently in the midst of an extensive North American tour, but the group have been hit with tragedy: guitarist Cory Smoot was found dead this morning (November 3). The cause of death is still unknown.
Smoot played the character of Flattus Maximus, a role he took over in 2002. In response to his death, Gwar founder Dave Brockie (aka Oderus Urungus) issued the following statement to MetalSucks:
It is with a sense of profound loss and tragedy that the members of GWAR must announce the passing of their long time guitarist and beloved friend Cory Smoot, also known to thousands of metal fans worldwide as Flattus Maximus. Cory was found deceased this morning as the band prepared for a border crossing. There is no word as to the cause of death and the members of GWAR are completely shocked and devastated that this has occurred. At this point there is no word on arrangements and the disposition of the remainder of GWAR's current North American tour, nor are there any details regarding long term plans. At this point we are just dealing with the loss of our dear friend and brother, one of the most talented guitar players in metal today. We ask that our fans and the media be respectful of our request for privacy for those that have suffered this terrible loss. A full statement will be coming in the next day or so, in the meantime please give your thoughts and your prayers to Cory, his family, and all the people that love him.
As Blabbermouth notes, Smoot owned the Karma Productions studio and received a producer credit on the Gwar albums Beyond Hell (2006), Lust in Space (2009) and Bloody Pit of Horror (2010). Although several guitarists performed as Flattus, Smoot held the role for the longest, and even wrote some of Gwar's recent material.
Following the band's recent show in Minneapolis, MN, on November 2, they were preparing to cross the Canadian border for dates in Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver. Stay tuned for updates about the status of those gigs. See the current schedule here.