Everyone's Replaceable

Protest the Hero and Bassist Arif Mirabdolbaghi Officially Part Ways

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Protest the Hero

Arif Mirabdolbaghi has left the building. The Protest the Hero building, that is.

This shouldn’t come as too much of a shock if you’ve been following PTH closely: Mirabdolbaghi sat out the band’s North American tour this past fall for commitments involving a play he was working on (a stage adaptation of a Dostoevsky story entitled The Double). Longtime friend of the band Cameron McLellan, who made a cameo on the Volition album track “Without Prejudice,” filled in on the tour while Arif assured fans he’d be back.

But here’s the thing: doesn’t it seem like once members begin to sit out tours and/or take on other roles within bands (producer, manager, etc) they almost always end up eventually quitting for good? Even if they do come back for a time. I’m thinking Peter Wichers / Soilwork, Andols Herrick / Chimaira, and surely others I can’t think of at the moment. The rigors of being in a full-time touring band are extremely tough and things go a lot more smoothly when bands have full-time dudes.

And so: MetalSucks reader Vance L. informs us that Rody Walker announced Arif’s departure from the stage at Sunday night’s show in Raleigh, NC. The band’s been on tour with Battlecross, The Safety Fire and Intervals since March 1st — without Arif — but they’ve remained mum on the issue until now. No word has come yet from the band’s official sources, i.e. Facebook or via press release, but we’re sure it’ll happen pretty soon.

It’s hard to imagine Protest the Hero without Arif. His bass lines were an important part of PTH music, which is saying a lot in these times of understated bass in metal. His personality will be missed in the band’s videos and generally humorous presentation. And, if I’m not mistaken, he contributed a lot of lyrics to their music as well. The remaining PTH members are certainly no slouches and should be able to soldier on without him and find a suitable replacement — as they did when drummer Moe Carlson left the band — but the lack of his presence will certainly be felt.

We wish Arif well in whatever he chooses to do next, be it continuing on with theater productions, joining another band, becoming a family man or whatever else. Best of luck, dude!

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