When I assembled the One Record Per Day list last year, I included the two Austrian Death Machine albums: Total Brutal and its followup, Double Brutal.
The lead singer for the band is Tim Lambesis, who also helms As I Lay Dying. I have not included any AILD albums on the list, because I don’t really listen to them anymore.
On day 19 of the project, album #22 came up: ADM’s debut, Total Brutal.
However, on May 7th, Tim Lambesis was arrested and charged as part of a murder-for-hire plot to kill his wife, Meggan. He pleaded not guilty, but the evidence building up against him is pretty damning.
The couple had been estranged, with Lambesis telling his spouse that he no longer loved her, was no longer a Christian, and wanted a divorce. They have 3 adopted children, all under the age of 10.
Lambesis later blamed his steroid use for the outburst, saying the drugs clouded his judgment. His bail was originally set at $3 million dollars (based on Lambesis’ personal net worth of $14 million, which is sourced primarily on intellectual property from his music). It was later lowered to $2 million. Lambesis is out on a paid bail of $186,000.
I cannot, in good conscience, write anything positive about the music of Austrian Death Machine after the despicable events that have transpired.
I realize this may be an error in judgment on my part, on account of the fact that Lambesis is a human being capable of making poor choices. I have written a few times about the fact that musicians are normal human beings, too.
But this is entirely different than, say, drug abuse. Tim Lambesis had the intent of having someone murder his wife.
I am equally disgusted by the web’s reaction to the story, with countless posts on Twitter saying that Meggan “probably deserved it.”
Elsewhere, on Facebook and music forums, fans of the band were focused on the question of when the third Austrian Death Machine album Triple Brutal, which had been crowd-funded, would be released.
These sentiments entirely miss the point of what happened. The music of Tim Lambesis has become a moot point. I don’t understand how any fan of either AILD or ADM could continue to listen to those groups anymore, considering what happened.
So instead of bypassing today’s album and replacing it, I ask you to send your thoughts or good vibes (or prayers or whatever you do) to Meggan Lambesis today.