A few months ago, Avenged Sevenfold announced that former drummer Arin Ilejay left the band through an announcement left on their website:
Hello Everyone –
We are writing this to inform you all that we will be moving forward without Arin IIejay as our drummer. Arin has been nothing but a positive energy and monster drummer for us over the past 4 years. We love the guy and always will. We are and will always be grateful to him for helping us to move forward through some very dark times. Creatively though, we felt we needed to move in a different direction. While we can’t say more at this time, we are excited for the future and looking forward to sharing our plans soon with the greatest fans in the world. As always we appreciate your understanding and unwavering support.
With Love –
Matt, Zack, Brian, Johnny
Recently, the band announced the name of their newest drummer to be ex-Bad Religion drummer, Brooks Wackerman. The announcement was made on Fozzy lead singer, Chris Jericho’s podcast, Talk Is Jericho. According to lead singer, M. Shadows, Wackerman’s name had been tossed around since the death of their first drummer Jimmy “The Rev” Sullivan in 2009. “To be honest, Brooks’ name has always been in the mix. It was one of the names we were throwing around when Jimmy passed away in terms of who was going to step up for Nightmare. We felt Mike [Portnoy] was the right choice and we still feel that way. Mike just destroyed on the record. He was perfect. But at the time, our tour manager brought up Brooks’ name as well. But at the time he was also busy with Bad Religion and it was also … people were going to look at it differently because he was a punk drummer at this point.” [x]
Shadows also gave an update on the state of the band’s music, saying, “the idea of the last record was a very stripped down sound and the idea of the next is a not very stripped down sound.” He also added that the band has been very conscious of the idea of Brooks be free on the album rather than just asking him to do what’s written down.
Wackerman joined Bad Religion in 2001 and made his studio debut with the band on 2002’s The Process of Belief album. He officially announced his departure from the band on October 28, explaining in a statement that “it was time” for him “to pursue another path.”