Everyone's Replaceable

ROB ARNOLD AND MATT DEVRIES LEAVE CHIMAIRA

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First, read vocalist — and now sole remaining original member — Mark Hunter’s statement on the matter. My own thoughts follow.

I would like to start off by thanking our fans for a great tour. This last run was a blast, and truly the most fun we’ve had in a long while. The energy from the audience was exactly what we needed, and a welcoming return. Thank you guys!

Unfortunately, as much fun as we were having, behind the scenes we were aware of some unfortunate realities that prevented us from “living the dream” and having the time of our lives. We had another bomb to drop on the fans.

Early in July we were informed that Rob Arnold and Matt DeVries would be leaving Chimaira at the end of 2011. Of course this was a huge blow, but there were no hard feelings. We understand that life invades art, everything runs its course, and we have to take different paths.

We respect their decision and wish them only the best. We made heavy metal history together and that is all that matters at the end of the day.

Chimaira Christmas 12 will be their last show, and we’ve been preparing to make it one that you’ll never forget.

I would personally like to thank Rob and Matt for all of their hard work, years of service to Chimaira, amazing songs, and for their friendship. Together we built something special that will remain for generations to come. I’m looking forward to spending another 5 weeks on the road with two of the best (and criminally underrated) guitarists in modern metal.

What’s next for Chimaira in 2012?

More on that very soon.

Rather than try and make light of unpleasant news, or downplay this by hyping up a new line-up, let’s take a few to honor Rob and Matt.

My favorite solo of Rob’s is on The Heart Of It All and my favorite riff of Matt’s is The Dehumanizing Process. I’ll be cranking those today. What about you?

See you in Detroit.

– Mark

Alright, so, obviously, this is a bummer. I’ve been saying ever since the band shed fifty percent of its line-up last year that Hunter and Arnold are the real driving creative force behind Chimaira, and as long as they’re in the band, all will be well.

Without Arnold? I honestly don’t know. I’m a huge fan of Hunter’s. I’m also a huge fan of Arnold’s. I’m trying to be optimistic about this… I would like nothing more than for Chimaira to go on and continue to be awesome and thrive. But there’s no denying that Arnold was a HUGE part of the band’s sound, and I don’t know how his absence will or will not change that sound. We call the category we use to post about band members’ departures “Everyone’s Replaceable,” but that’s obviously not true.

That being said, here’s something to be optimistic about: Emil Werstler is already in the band playing bass. If they slide him over to lead guitar, well… that dude is an amazing amazing amazing guitarist and a great songwriter. And it could all work out! Of course, we don’t even know for a fact Werstler is stepping into the position, but… well, he must at least be an option, right?

But right now I really don’t know. I wish I had more insight into this, but… I don’t. This is, for better or worse, going to be one of those situations where we just have to wait and see and keep our fingers crossed.

Share your thoughts in the comments section. You can get all upcoming Chimaira tour dates here.

-AR

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