In a shock to longtime fans, Lamb of God are moving on without their founding drummer Chris Adler. The band announced today that Art Cruz, who had been filling in for Adler on tour, is now the band’s new permanent stickman.
Adler, whose brother Willie remains in the band, had been sitting out of Lamb of God’s shows for the past year, citing injuries he had sustained in a motorcycle accident.
Lamb of God toured extensively in the past year, with Cruz behind the kit, primarily supporting Slayer on the thrash legends’ farewell tour.
Adler had recently been announced as part of an all-star lineup of metal musicians who are playing a gig in Russia this October, perhaps leading optimistic fans to believe he would be returning to the kit for Lamb of God, but now we know that is not the case.
Prior to his gig with Lamb of God, Cruz had played in the band Prong and is still an active member of the band Winds of Plague.
A statement from Lamb of God, as posted to their Facebook page this afternoon, not only mentions the lineup change, but informs fans that Cruz will hit the studio with the band to record their next album:
Dear Lamb of God fans,
We returned last week from a great European festival run and our final tour with Slayer in North America. We are excited to keep the momentum going and dive into the next record.
We’d like to officially welcome Art Cruz, who has been playing drums with us on tour for the last year, as the new drummer of Lamb of God. Art will be joining us in the studio as we begin pre-production and recording of a new album.
We’re very proud of everything this band has accomplished over the last two decades. We would like to thank Chris Adler for his contributions over the years and wish him the best in his future endeavors.
John, Mark, Randy & Willie
Adler played drums on Megadeth’s Grammy-winning 2016 album, Dystopia, but couldn’t remain with the band on tour due to his commitments with Lamb of God.
We caught up with Lamb of God guitarist Willie Adler and bassist John Campbell for a video interview at Sonic Temple Festival in May, and they made no mention of the lineup change, telling us that the new album was “priority No. 1” for the band. Watch that interview below.