Peter Steele, singer and bassist for Type O Negative, has died following an unspecified illness. He was 48.
The announcement was made on the band's website on Thursday, but I literally found out about it about five minutes ago. To be honest, I'm somewhat surprised that I'm as upset as I am at this moment. Let me explain:
Type O Negative was always a (for want of a better term) problematic band for me. Much of their stuff was dreadful--and they made no effort to deny the fact, which in turn made me admire their honesty. Some of their stuff was quite brilliant. Sometimes it was hard to tell which was which.
The gloomiest band on the planet, yet with a delightfully dry and subtle sense of humour and a relish for the absurd that greatly appealed to me. I haven't played them in years--not because I don't like them (I do), but because somehow they just seem to slip off the radar, lying fallow until they rise up and hit you right between the eyes with a new release or a new story in the metal press. In recent years, Steele's ongoing health (ahem) concerns have kept them out of the studio and therefore out of the spotlight, but once again they've risem up and hit us right between the eyes--this time in a way that is both profound and tragic.
Peter Steele, R.I.P.
CANOE -- JAM! Music: Type O Negative frontman dead