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3/4ths of Gaza Form New Band Cult Leader

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Cult Leader

The circumstances surrounding Gaza’s break-up this past March were murky, to say the least. Frontman Jon Parkin was very publicly accused of rape in January, which we chose note to report on here at MetalSucks at the time because of the levity of the accusation and the lack of details surrounding the case. Parkin denied the accusations, Gaza as an official unit tried to distance themselves from the situation, and then two days later the accuser issued a statement saying both parties had come to a “resolution” on the matter and would not be discussing it further. Two months later, Gaza broke up. Was the break-up already in the making and the timing just a coincidence? Did all four band members collectively decide the band’s name had been irreparably damaged by the accusations and that they should pack it in? Did the three members of the band want to distance themselves from Parkin?

We may never know, but today it’s looking more like the latter: the three non-Parkin members of Gaza — Michael Mason (guitar), Casey Hansen (drums), and Anthony Lucero (bass) — have resurfaced in a new outfit called Cult Leader with Sam Richards as the vocalist. In case there was any doubt that Cult Leader are attempting to pick up where Gaza left off, their “About” section on Facebook offers the following succinct and direct description: “We once were another band, and now we’re a better one.”

Here’s some live footage of Cult Leader performing a song this past weekend. These guys haven’t lost any of their venom; from the sound of it they may be even heavier than Gaza were. Watch:

The “Gaza” name had built up a solid reputation over the years and it must’ve taken a lot to give up on it completely and start fresh; even though 3/4ths of the band members are the same, band names go a long way as fans don’t necessarily all follow the news closely enough to know. But Gaza were an excellent band with a loyal following, and with their pedigree Cult Leader certainly can be too. I look forward to hearing whatever these guys put together.

Thanks: Jamison Garrido and Tim McElroy

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