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PHIL DEMMEL Considers Breaking Up VIO-LENCE As More Old-School Members Leave

The logic is certainly there.


Vio-lence reunited in 2019 as their classic lineup of vocalist Sean Killian, guitarist Phil Demmel, bassist Deen Dell, and drummer Perry Strickland. Dell left the group in 2020 and Strickland split with the band earlier this year, leaving the band with new bassist Christian Olde Wolbers and a handful of live members like drummer Adrian Aguilar (Exmortus) and guitarists Miles Dimitri Baker (Interloper, ex-Rings Of Saturn) and Ira Black.

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In a lengthy Instagram video, Demmel addresses the fact that half Vio-lence is now new members and that he's brought up ending the band once again. Demmel also notes that he won't be playing every single show with Vio-lence, meaning that Killian will be the only member of Vio-lence present that hasn't joined in the 2020s. Which frankly is extremely respectable – if Demmel isn't happy with things and Killian agrees, then it is what it is.

"In all honesty, 'cause that's kind of how I roll, it's kind of weird playing these shows. With Perry gone now… Everybody's awesome. Miles is awesome. I love Christian. Ira [Black, guitarist] is super pro… It's just weird. And being the founder, co-founder of this band and being a part of just about everything that it's done, seeing it come to a bunch of fill-ins and me and Sean, it's just…

"I'm in a weird spot right now with how it is. We played last night. The show was great. Adrian did awesome. Playing the tunes was great. The fans loved it. It was packed. But I'm just kind of really torn right now in the sense of what Vio-lence is and what it's gonna be and what my role is gonna be in that and how I feel about that. So I'm just spitting it all out right now.

"I had a talk with Sean about it. And actually, in all honesty, I've asked him to — [laughs] this is an overshare, for sure — but I've told him I wanted to shut it down. I get the feelings of 1991 all over again when Robb [Flynn] left and then Perry left. And God bless Ray and Mark Hernandez, and it just became something that it wasn't. And that's how it's kind of feeling to me a little bit. It's kind of what it feels like.

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"I'm in a very fortunate spot music-wise, with lots of options and lots of things I could be doing or am doing, in a sense, and realizing that to ask that of those dudes to not do it anymore is selfish on my part. And maybe that's why I made the first reachout about… So thinking about it today moved my perspective to the point where it's… The kids are loving it. And for the people that didn't know the members of the band, as opposed from the older fans that have known us as those five that were on those records, then it's…

"I don't know what to do. I'm just sharing how I feel about it all. I love the dudes that are jamming with them. Like I said, I do. It's nothing against them. I think they play the parts great. It's definitely different. The thing with me and Vio-lence is that we were always this dangerous element — not, like, dangerous… Well, back in the day, definitely. [Laughs] But it was just this weird things-can-go-off-the-rails-at-any-moment-type deal. And as you put different people in those pieces, then you kind of lose what that's about.

"And maybe that's what I'm missing right now. And I've been apart from it, from all the things that I've been doing and have chosen to do. So it's hard to let go. And I'm not letting go; I'm a partner in the business. And as much as I'm gonna be playing? Probably not a bunch.

"So I think it's fair to the fans to know that… I will announce what shows I'm gonna be at, and I think it's fair of the band to let the fans where and what lineup is gonna be playing, in that sense, and let them decide what they wanna do."

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