Paul Gray, bassist of Slipknot, was found dead in his hotel room at the age of 38. His body was discovered by an employee of the hotel, and at this point there is not much more than that which is known with any certainty. Iowa authorities have however stated that they do no suspect there is any foul play, but will reserve the final word on that until an autopsy has been completed on May 25, 2010.
Gray was staying at the Plaza Hotel in Urbandale, Iowa, which is the area many of Slipknot’s band members are from. Drugs are a possibility as Gray did have a 2003 arrest connected to drugs, however sources close to the band are insisting that Grey was not a drug addict. Regardless, it is being floated as a theory as he does have drug use in his history and Len Bias is a reminder that one need not be an addict to overdose.
While no evidence of drugs or drug paraphernalia was mentioned as being present in his hotel room, it is a slim possibility. The Des Moines Examiner reported that a drug overdose was the cause of death, but absent of an autopsy or any form of verification from a true authority it has to remain pure speculation.
There is no known genetic reason for Gray’s death which has been shared by anyone close to him which is making any speculation as to what happened even harder. Gray is survived by his wife Brenna Paul whom is pregnant with their child. Neither she nor anyone from his record label has commented.
Gray was a founding member of Slipknot dating back to 1995. While Slipknot won a Grammy in 2006 for Best Metal Performance for their song “Before I Forget”, they are best known by many for wearing hideously disfigured masks on stage and affectionately calling their fans maggots. Slipknot broke ground in metal in many regards, not just for being a 9 person band and taking theatrics in a different more graphic direction than predecessors, but for displaying some real musical chops that proved they did have musical talent and were more than a simple gimmick band.
Slipknot has not released an album since 2008, “All Hope is Gone:, which debuted at number one and is expected to go platinum shortly to match their first three releases. Slipknot was primarily known for their live performances which delivered far more than any studio recording could. Surviving band mates have not commented on any future plans for the band or on Gray at this point.