Avenged Sevenfold Recruits Ex-Bad Religion Drummer Brooks Wackerman

November 4, 2015

Avenged Sevenfold has recruited Brooks Wackerman (Bad Religion, Infectious Grooves) as its new drummer!


A7X singer M. Shadows said, “To be honest, Brooks’s name has always been in the mix. It was one of the names we were throwing around when Jimmy (original Avenged drummer) passed away in terms of who was going to step up for [the 2010 album] ‘Nightmare’. We felt Mike (Portnoy, ex-Dream Theatre) 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’s 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.”


A7X had been working with a new drummer for over a year now, following the departure of Arin Ilejay. It was only announced Ilejay left the group this past July.

“It just became increasingly difficult to be on the same page, not only touring, but with writing and just where we want to take things,” explained M. Shadows. “We’re just a bunch of guys who are all over the place and we have a bunch of different influences and we need somebody who can instantly… who can sit there and say, ‘Yeah, I’ve got that influence too or I understand why we’re gonna go here. I understand why we’re going to do that.'”

SACRAMENTO, 13TH SEPTEMBER 2014:  Brooks Wackerman, drummer with Bad Religion, performing at Aftershock festival, Sacramento, California.


Wackerman told the “Talk Is Jericho” podcast: “I’ve been a fan of the band for a decade and when Matt [M. Shadows] gave me the call last year, I was absolutely thrilled.

“This past year I have been reassessing what I want to do. With a band like Bad Religion, I’m so proud of all the work we’ve done together. But I was yearning for something new, a different style and during that time is when I got the call.”

Ilejay was Avenged Sevenfold’s drummer for four years, playing on 2013’s “Hail To The King” album. In announcing his exit, the band thanked him for his “positive energy” but added that it “needed to move in a different direction.”

Wackerman announced his departure from Bad Religion on October 28, explaining in a statement that “it was time” for him “to pursue another path.”


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