Unplugging: GWAR's Flattus Maximus is no more

Posted by Lily Angelle, MXDWN

We are psyched that Austin, TX will be welcoming many musical acts in the coming months, kicking off with this weekend’s Fun Fun Fun Fest, and SXSW next spring.

However, Austin, along with other towns at the tail of their North American tour, are questioning GWAR’s ability to finish up their North American tour after the recent death of their guitarist, Cory Smoot.

Thursday afternoon, GWAR guitarist Cory Smoot, who goes by the stage/character name of Flattus Maximus, was found dead in in his bunk on the band's tour bus, only about two weeks into their North American Return of the World Maggot tour. The cause of death is currently unknown.

Unplugging: GWAR's Flattus Maximus is no moreSmoot joined GWAR in 2002, and contributed much direction to the group’s 2010 release, Bloody Pit of Horror. He also served as producer to their 2009 Lust in Space release.

Frontman Dave Brockie, aka Oderus Urungus, dropped his act on a serious note to release a sincere statement regarding his longtime friend: "At this point we are just dealing with the loss of our dear friend and brother."

According to Brockie, there is no word as of yet regarding their North American tour that is underway. The band is expected to provide a full press release within the next few days.

The shocking loss of Smoot came shortly after GWAR’s performance of "Hail, Genocide!" on Jimmy Fallon. The track is off their 2010 album, Bloody Pit of Horror. GWAR has already gorily serenaded fans at over ten stops on their North American tour, but as mentioned before, it is unclear if they will finish up their tour, which was originally intended on running through the end of November.

With GWAR’s tour up in the air, there is question whether or not they’ll make it to Austin (scheduled for November 18th), but rest assured, a ton of other acts are scheduled to pull into Austin this spring for SXSW 2012.

This year’s 26th annual South by Southwest Music Festival lineup has been announced, and more acts are expected to be added, as showcase applications are due this week. If you know SXSW, then you probably know that lineups are very tentative, and there are usually tons of last-minute changes and additions.

Unplugging: GWAR's Cory Smoot passes awayNevertheless, SXSW has released a bill currently consisting of 105 acts, and can be viewed on the festival’s website. The festival showcases hundreds of bands at copious venue locations around downtown Austin, Texas. The upcoming festival will span from March 9-18, 2012.

Also hitting Austin is the 6th annual Fun Fun Fun Fest this weekend (Nov. 4-6). On Monday, it was announced that FFF Fest and Pitchfork will team up for the festival, and the four stages will be broadcasted live over the Internet.

This is the first time that fans unable to make it to Austin for the festival can share the experience via a live online stream. A stream feed will be dedicated to each of the four stages, making just about all the live performances available to anyone with Internet access. Viewers of the stream feeds will be able to easily switch from feed to feed without having to open multiple browsers or tabs, granting easy ability to check out the various genre-specific stages.

This weekend’s highly anticipated Fun Fun Fun Fest act, Odd Future, is making headlines again for another controversial discrepancy that took place at the recent Voodoo Experience music festival in New Orleans.

Odd futureInfamous for being openly offensive and explicit, Odd Future didn’t fail to stir things up when they took the stage at last weekend’s festival.

Group member Left Brain reportedly slapped a freelance photographer after front man Tyler the Creator voiced his hatred toward photographers. Backing his front man’s claim, Left Brain began to harass photographers, kicking their equipment and throwing water at them.

Photographer Amy Harris was the victim of Left Brain’s violent gestures, as he took things over the edge by slapping her. Harris has decided not to file charges against the notorious group.

Odd Future’s publicist recently released a statement in attempts to make the situation seem less malicious: "After telling the photographers to clear out multiple times (as they’ve done before), Vyron (Leftbrain) took a swipe at a few cameras, NOT people."

We can only hope that Odd Future’s upcoming performance this weekend at Austin’s Fun Fun Fun Fest goes a bit more smoothly.

Unplugging in Brief:

GWAR Guitarist Cory Smoot, aka Flattus Maximus, Confirmed Dead - GWAR guitarist found dead in the band’s hotel room only a few weeks into their North American tour.

Gwar Plays "Hail, Genocide!" Live on Jimmy Fallon - Before tragedy arose, GWAR stopped by Fallon to play a gory hit off Bloody Pit of Horror.

SXSW 2012 Lineup Announced - Austin’s South by Southwest Music Festival has released a tentative lineup for the 2012 fest.

Fun Fun Fun Fest and Pitchfork Agree to Stream All Four Stages - Pitchfork will host four live stream feeds for each Fun Fun Fun Fest stage, so that everyone with internet access can take part in the music.

Left Brain from Odd Future Allegedly Slaps a Female Photographer at Voodoo Music Festival - Odd Future is in the news again for a recent controversy involving the assault of a freelance photographer at the recent Voodoo Music Festival.

* Lily Angelle, MXDWN