Paul Gray, bassist with Slipknot, has been found dead in a hotel room in Des Moines.
Gray was a founder member of the masks-and-mumble-metal act, bringing the band together in 1995. At the outset, his 'mask' consisted of tape, but as the band sold more and more - gathering number one albums and Grammy awards - he moved on to more elaborate face-coverings.
For a man from a band who market nihilism, Gray's personal life was relatively quiet - a 2003 car crash led to a drugs conviction, but he hadn't appeared to be spiraling down Doherty-style.
He'd been working on a metal supergroup, Hail!, and had been about to head out on tour. Gray was taking over the bass from David Ellefson, who had been recalled to day job duties in Megadeath.
Hail! manager Mark Abbattista told Blabbermouth:
"I spoke to Paul over the weekend, and we had a great conversation. He was so upbeat and excited as we discussed all our final gear and travel details, went through our new setlist and joked about the most fun way to 'unmask' him onstage.
"We were so looking forward to playing with Paul on our upcoming tour and this is a complete tragedy.
"We are all in a state of shock and our heartfelt condolences go out to [Paul's wife] Brenna, his family, SLIPKNOT, their management and all his friends. This is a horrible loss and a very sad day."
Police aren't looking for anyone in connection with the death. An autopsy and toxicology reports are expected today.
Paul Gray leaves a wife, Brenna Paul. He was 38.