Evile Will Go on After Death of Bassist Mike Alexander
A month after the passing of bassist Mike Alexander, the remaining members of Evile have finally broken their silence about the tragic loss for the first time, and they told Metal Hammer that, while it will be hard to find a replacement for Alexander, they intend on carrying on as a band because, “if we didn’t, I think he’d come back and punch us all in the face really hard and say, ‘What are you doing?'”
Evile members Matt Drake, Ol Drake, and Ben Carter sat down with Metal Hammer to remember Alexander, who died on Oct. 5 while the band were on tour in Sweden with Amon Amarth from a pulmonary embolism, a blockage of the main artery of the lung. When asked how they were handling the loss, the band said they’re “getting there,” and the guys were astounded by the overwhelming response fans from all over the world have had to Alexander’s unexpected death.
“It’s a brilliant thing,” Matt Drake says. “To see how much people appreciated him … people who we never even spoke to him have paid their respects and its been huge.” In the wake of Alexander’s death, Evile’s members have learned more about their former bandmate than they’d learned sharing the road with him. They said “Mike went out of his way to meet people at gigs,” and would usually walk around before the band’s set to meet with people and drink with them.
Before joining Evile, the band says Alexander was contemplating quitting music. He’d been in several bands and dealt with loads of unwarranted racial abuse. He kept to himself and was very private. It wasn’t until after his passing that the rest of Evile learned Alexander owned a cat he’d named Metallica. The band says they’ve gotten “more insight into this guy we were so close to,” but have only now realized “we could have been closer to him.”
Evile says that a couple of days before Alexander died, he “looked really tired and he was worn out.” The band just let him rest and do his own thing, and he barely complained. They tried to call him a doctor, but he refused. “He said, ‘Let me get a drink.’ I kind of wish we made more of a fuss now.”
What scared Evile was how quickly the bassist deteriorated. “Literally, in the space of an hour, one minute he was talking to us and he was alright, and the next minute, no Mike anymore,” Drake said. “It does put so much perspective on everything. You can’t take anything for granted. It was just surreal. He just seemed tired, and he said he couldn’t breath as easily as he could before. He felt like his chest was a bit tight.”
The band, at first, though Alexander came down with the swine flu. They teased him for being a “softie,” and told him to have a drink and “walk it off.” Evile will continue, but will always honor the memory of Alexander, who leaves two sons, a daughter, and his longtime girlfriend behind.
Alexander started slapping his bass for the English thrash metal outfit in 2004. He was 32 at the time of his death. The band’s debut album, ‘Enter the Grave,’ was released through Earache in 2007, and Evile’s second album, ‘Infected Nations,’ was released on Sept. 21.