Months after alt-metal band Baroness were involved in a bus crash that injured nine people and derailed the Georgian rockers’ tour schedule, the group is planning their return. In a note posted on the band’s website on December 17, frontman John Baizley — who broke his left arm and left leg in the August accident — wrote that he has healed enough to get back to making music.
“Music might be the best therapy I have right now,” Baizley wrote in the latest of several updates. “I’ve tried to fill my weekly routine with as much physical therapy as possible but the truth is, PT is not fun, and its benefits come with a great deal of mental/physical/spiritual pain and struggle.” The vocalist-guitarist added that the band is still far off from resuming a full schedule of touring and recording, but asserted their commitment to recovery. “Sure, there’s some substantial obstacles to overcome before we write, record or perform any time soon,” he wrote, “But we still have everything we need to get ‘back in’ that particular ‘saddle again.'”
Baizley closed the post with a gracious thanks to Baroness’ fans. “What little publicity that surrounds our crash has given voice to so many people who have shared their own stories of injury, trauma and struggle with us, and has furthered my own faith in the communicative and universal strength of music,” he wrote. “As every singer on every stage has nightly said, ‘We wouldn’t be where we are without you.’ Thanks everyone. We look forward to seeing you soon.” The Baroness leader previously described the crash in gory detail, revealing that “there was blood, glass and diesel fuel everywhere” after the band’s tour bus plummeted 30 feet off a viaduct in the U.K.
At the bottom of the Dec. 17 note, Baizley shared a video of him and guitarist Peter Adams playing an acoustic rendition of “Stretchmarker,” a pensive instrumental off the band’s Essential album Yellow & Green (which SPIN recently declared the year’s best metal album and included on our 50 Best Albums of 2012 list). Watch the performance below, then read Baizley’s letter in full.
Simply put: it’s time to get back to it. Since my belated and thankful return to the USA (after our painful test in motorcoach-aeronautics) i can definitively say i’ve exhausted my reserve of potential leisure activities (there’s not that many of them, after all). in recent weeks, i’ve come dreadfully close to boredom, and in those moments i can’t help but focus on my glaring physical infirmities. television offers little respite from this relative stasis; i’m sure by now i have sampled every biker-meth-dealer-zombie-low-talking-cop-crime-scene-serial-killer-real-housewife soap opera that is currently being broadcast (and there’s no small number of them). i’ve tried to fill my weekly routine with as much physical therapy as possible but the truth is, PT is not fun, and its benefits come with a great deal of mental/physical/spiritual pain and struggle. furthermore, i believe am getting a touch of Stockholm syndrome when it comes to my doctors and therapists (the highlight of my week should NOT involve a clinic). music might be the best therapy i have right now. perhaps it’s both the cause and the cure (the thought has crossed my mind); but i feel lost without it. Pete and i have just spent a long week surveying our musical wreckage and, surprisingly, we are quite well and intact. sure, there’s some substantial obstacles to overcome before we write, record or perform any time soon; but we still have everything we need to get “back in” that particular “saddle again”. Most of my peers are familiar with such high-school-gym-teacher poeticisms as “risk equals reward” and “no pain, no gain”; but did any of us every really believe there was any real wisdom in those adolescent platitudes? i didn’t. i am, however, starting to understand the essence of these and many of our other favorite cliches.
as odd as it might be for me to write these “updates” after 10 years of personal silence on the internet, i feel that i owe everyone who’s voiced or given their support to Baroness a brief synopsis of our situation and more importantly a heartfelt thanks. honestly, it has made this ordeal much easier on me. what little publicity that surrounds our crash has given voice to so many people who have shared their own stories of injury, trauma and struggle with us, and has furthered my own faith in the communicative and universal strength of music. as every singer on every stage has nightly said, “we wouldn’t be where we are without you.” thanks everyone. we look forward to seeing you soon. here’s a short clip of a song we wrote.