As I Lay Dying have lost another member in longtime bassist Josh Gilbert who last night (May 16) announced his departure from the band.
His decision comes after guitarist Nick Hipa left the Californian metalcore outfit in 2020, citing that he wanted to prioritise “a motion design career, deep focus on my family, taking care of my health, and working on other creative projects”.
Taking to Instagram to issue a statement, Gilbert wrote: “Hello, friends. After 15 years (almost half my life), I’ve decided to part ways with As I Lay Dying.
“Despite the ups and downs inherent, I’ll always be grateful for the profound privilege of being to able to grow up travelling the world playing music with the band. None of that would be possible without the fans of the band, so for that I sincerely thank you all so much for allowing me the opportunity.”
He concluded: “I wish the best for AILD moving forward, and I hope to see all of you sooner rather than later.”
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As I Lay Dying have announced a replacement for Gilbert in the form of Miss May I’s Ryan Neff. They’ve also announced that Ken Susi of Unearth will play guitar on the band’s upcoming tours following Hipa’s departure.
“As we have been nearing our first tour back since the beginning of 2020, there have been several developments within AILD that we’d like to share with our fans,” the band wrote on Instagram. “The past couple years off from the road with the uncertainty of how or when touring would pick up again has provided time to consider new endeavours in life apart from AILD.
“Josh Gilbert has decided to exit AILD to pursue other musical opportunities. Josh has been a strong contributor musically for AILD since joining in 2007 so we are grateful for all his contributions and his friendship over the years. We wish him all the best and are excited to see where this new path takes him in life.”
Going on to explain that they will honour their touring commitments for the rest of the year, the band introduced their new members.
“We are thankful to have Ryan Neff, of Miss May I taking on bass and vocal duties for our upcoming tours,” they wrote. ”Joining us on second guitar for these two tours will be our good friend Ken Susi of Unearth…Ken’s style of guitar playing is closely related to AILD so we are excited to have a close friend and ripper of a guitar player joining us.”
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As I Lay Dying reunited in 2018 following several years of inactivity after frontman Tim Lambesis was arrested over a plot to have his wife murdered.
He pled not guilty to a solicitation-of-murder charge, with Lambesis’ lawyer saying that his judgement was “devastatingly affected by his steroid use” when the alleged incident occurred. He was sentenced to six years in prison in May of 2014, and was released on parole in December of 2016.
In a 2018 statement, Lambesis told fans that those “who support As I Lay Dying are not supporting the person I once was.”