Thursday, January 22, 2015

Danny Worsnop Leaves Asking Alexandria and This Writer is Totally Not Shocked

Okay, news first: Danny Worsnop has left Asking Alexandria. Apparently, he posted this lovely Twitlonger earlier today:

So he gave everyone the generic parting of ways message (at least it's better than Gerard Way's "a bird made me do it" letter) and that was it. He is leaving to front what was supposed to be his side-project band, Harlot, which just released its first music video the other day for the song, "Nails."

Yeah, it's not really my cup of tea, either.

With Worship gone, some fans were lamenting the state of Asking Alexandria, prophesying its doom. But chin up, little AA soldiers, all is not lost, at least not according to Ben Bruce, the founder and beloved lead guitarist of Asking Alexandria. He posted this long letter to the fans on the band's Facebook account:

Ben, like myself, doesn't sound at all surprised and the fact that it sounds like they have a new lead singer already lined up, shows that this was a long time coming. It would explain why Worsnop's Twitter, as of late, has been basically all about his Velvet Revolver wannabe band, Harlot (honestly, people, I would't even rank their new song a 1 out of 5; it's pretty damn generic and awful). Be that as it my, Worsnop is out and Asking Alexandria is pushing forward.

I'm sure fans are hyperventilating at home, clutching onto their tees and AP Magazines with Worsnop and Bruce together on the cover, but I want them all to take a deep breath.

Worsnop hasn't exactly been the most reliable front man on God's green earth. I want to take you all back to March of 2011 when he walked onto the stage in Seattle already drunk off his head and proceeded to make a spectacle of himself to the point where the band brought fans up to sing their songs.

It really was a disaster.

Worsnop's battles with drugs and alcohol haven't exactly been concealed throughout the band's career and Worsnop and Bruce were reported to have feuded over a destroyed pair of Worsnop's boots. It doesn't exactly sound like the healthiest working environment.

I know the two were friends, but, Christ, they were more dysfunctional than Richards and Jagger.

Worsnop has also never hidden his love of all things eighties hair metal and it comes as no surprise that, creatively, the band was splitting apart. Asking Alexandria are modern metal core; Danny wants to be Sebastian Bach. That's not going to jive.

Long and short, this was a long time coming and fans should at least be comforted that Asking Alexandria, because of how obvious Danny's unhappiness was, probably had back up plans.

Now, they're going to keep touring and they're going to make a new record. Sweet. Do I think it will be better than the other records? Yes.

Danny has been holding the band back, particularly this past year with his vocal issues. Years of drugs and alcohol have taken their toll on his voice and he hasn't been able to scream well since. The band needs a stronger singer. It needs someone who is completely committed to the sound its are trying to achieve. Danny leaving is probably a good thing. It's like when you change your clothes after you've been ill. You feel better. Just shedding what is covered in filth and grime and the dredges of your illness makes you feel better than any medicine could. I think that's what is going to happen with Asking Alexandria.

Danny has also seemed incredibly stunted by Asking Alexandria and has probably led to a lot of unhappiness. With his departure from AA and his future with Harlot, he'll probably be a lot happier, free to explore the sounds he is most drawn to. There's nothing worse than being tied to something that feels stunting and claustrophobic. He probably felt limited and probably lost his passion for that particular sound. He grew out of it and wants to try something else. Kudos to him for branching off and trying something new.

It's no secret that the band's most recent release, From Death to Destiny, wasn't my favorite album of 2013. In fact, it took me months to even buy it (I ended up getting it out of a sense of duty; I did fall in love with this band the year I turned 21 and partied to their music more times than I can count). It was like they were forcing their sound, trying to apply a formula that had proved obsolete. The band was quickly become anachronistic, a left over from the blip on the radar that was the summer of 2011 when metal core ruled.

With Worsnop gone, the band is going to be forced to change up its sound, at least vocally. It's also going to be forced to question choices in musical arrangement. If Bruce's letter to the fans is anything to go by, the band is fired up and ready to go. So, really, I think with Worsnop's dead weight tossed off, the band can only rise.

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