The frontman for the costume-clad “extraterrestrial” metal band Gwar died of an accidental heroin overdose, the Virginia coroner’s office told local media Tuesday.
According to a statement from the band, David Brockie, 50, was found dead in his Richmond home March 23. Brockie died from “acute heroin toxicity and the manner of death is accident,” Arkuie Williams, administrator of the medical examiner’s office, said in an email.
Formed in 1984, the Grammy-nominated band rose to fame in part because of its elaborate, over-the-top and grotesque costumes and showmanship. The band had regular appearences on the popular TV show “Beavis and Butt-head” and had a cameo in the 1995 film “Empire Records.”
Gwar released its most recent album, “Battle Maximus,” in September.
The band also established the Dave Brockie fund, which promotes the advancement of music and performance in the arts, encouraging promising talents who have trouble with funding through mainstream channels, according to the website.
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Gwar manager Jack Flanagan could not be reached for comment.
Brockie performed as the character Oderus Urungus.
Shortly after his death, former and current bandmates shared their admiration for Brockie in interviews.
“Dave was one of the funniest, smartest, most creative and energetic persons I’ve known,” former GWAR bassist Mike Bishop told Richmond’s Style Weekly publication. “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.”
In a video posted to YouTube, the band – out of costume – thanked fans for their love and support in the wake of Brockie’s death.
In 2011, the group lost band member, lead guitarist Cory Smoot, aka Flattus Maximus, who died at 34 of a heart attack caused by coronary heart disease.
Times staff writer Randy Lewis contributed to this report. Follow @theryanparker for breaking news.
Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
6:17 p.m.: This story was updated with additional information about Brockie’s career.
This post was originally published at 4:15 p.m.