Surviving Power Trip Members Give First Interview Since Riley Gale’s Death, Reveal They Plan To Make New Music

  • Axl Rosenberg

The surviving members of Power Trip — guitarists Blake Ibanez and Nick Stewart, bassist Chris Whetzel, and drummer Chris Ulsh — have given their first interview since vocalist Riley Gale passed away in August at the far-too-young age of 34.

The Los Angeles Times interview was conducted this past Monday, March 8, in anticipation of Sunday’s Grammy Awards. Power Trip are nominated in the Best Metal Performance category for a live recording of “Executioner’s Tax (Swing of the Axe),” and they seem like a solid bet, if not a sure thing, to win (their competitors include Body Count, Code Orange, In This Moment, and Poppy). Assuming they do take home the trophy, “bittersweet” will be the only adjective to aptly describe the victory.

The interview also reportedly marks the first time all of Power Trip’s members have been together since Gale’s funeral.

As you might expect, the piece highlights how Gale’s bandmates continue to grieve over the loss. As stated by Ulsh:

“Losing Riley was the saddest thing that ever happened to me. But I’m so proud of everything we accomplished together. One of the coolest things from the start was that there was no ceiling to this band, and this Grammy nomination is a perfect example of that.”

Ibanez goes on to say that Gale’s death has “definitely brought us closer,” a sentiment Stewart seconds: “[T]his has helped us all realize how much we love each other.”

The biggest revelation to come out of the discussion, however, is that the band isn’t splitting up. Says Ibanez:

“We do want to continue to play music together; we just are not sure what that looks like at this time.”

That doesn’t seem to rule out either the possibility of soldiering on with a new frontman, as bands like AC/DC, Alice in Chains, and Suicide Silence have done in the past, or continuing with a different name, Joy Division/New Order-style. They will surely have the full support of the metal community either way.

You can read the entire interview here.

The Grammys air March 14 on CBS. They’ll be hosted by The Daily Show‘s Trevor Noah.

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