Grant Hart, drummer and songwriter for the influential rock band Hüsker Dü, has died. He was 56 years old. The cause of death has not been announced, but Variety reports that he had been fighting cancer. Earlier this morning, the Hüsker Dü Facebook posted an uncaptioned photo of Hart. Bob Mould, Hart’s Hüsker Dü bandmate, confirmed the news on his Facebook.
Hüsker Dü began releasing music in 1981, where initial critical acclaim for releases like Land Speed Record and Everything Falls Apart led to a record deal with hallowed punk label SST. Though they were nominally a hardcore band, they began incorporating more varied, melodic music styles. Hart wrote many of their songs, on which he sang lead. Their breakthrough album was 1984’s sprawling double album Zen Arcade, and its follow-up New Day Rising. Shortly after, they signed to Warner Bros, where they remained until they broke up from inner tension in 1988. Hart continued to release music, his most recent being 2013’s The Argument.
Unlike peers such as the Replacements or Dinosaur Jr., Hüsker Dü never reunited. In 2015, the band launched an official website, which apparently initiated communication between the members, though they continue to dissuade against the chances of a reunion. Just this month, Numero Group announced a massive box set reissue of their early music, recorded between their formation in 1979 and their signing with SST in 1983.
Read our 2013 interview with Hart.