It almost feels blasphemous to use the words "rest in peace" in reference to Dave Brockie and his larger-than-life alter-ego Oderus Urungus, the filth-spewing, cum-spraying, blood-thirsty frontman of GWAR, but so it goes with the formalities of death (I did opt for the Latin version though, because it at least had a bit of "scat" involved). Like most any enthusiast of the absurd and audaciously ridiculous, many of us here are longtime fans of GWAR. I mean, how can you not like a band that celebrates the worst attributes of humanity, politics, religion, and war by musically crucifying them onstage in a raucous theatrical mess of metal mayhem? Though rhetorically asked, the answer, must you need one, is you cannot.
I'll never forget my first concert going GWAR experience in the early '90s, when I dropped my normal shoe-gazing, wallflower demeanor to jump wholeheartedly into the frenzied fray. There was absolutely no way I was going to leave the Hollywood Palladium that night without being covered in every available mystery fluid to come spraying off the stage out into the crowd, and I risked life, limb, and glasses to make sure I got my fair share. I'd even specially worn my white Big Brother Midwest Tour shirt for the occasion, and it did indeed emerge a permanently stained, half-ass tie-dye of a souvenir that I saved for several years afterward.
Some time later we managed to interview Dave—or rather Oderus, as was his stern will (there were to be no photos taken before the costume nor after)—for Big Brother magazine. We took him down to a Go-Kart track in Carson, where he faced off against a random little girl who just happened to be there with her father on the day. Rick Kosick took the formal photos that accompanied the interview, but I was determined to poach from the sidelines with a roll of black-and-white film, and did just that. I can't find the interview now, but I do have that photo and I'm sad this is the reason I now have to share it.
Long live the memory of the Scumdogs of the Universe!
(Photo by Sean Cliver; 1998- or '99-ish)