Titus Andronicus Bassist Ian Graetzer Leaves the Band

At Death By Audio, via MySpace
At Death By Audio, via MySpace

Well, this is kind of a bummer--Titus Andronicus founding member and bassist Ian Graetzer has played his last show with the band. In a typically effusive post on the New Jersey punk juggernaut's blog, frontman Patrick Stickles explains it has something to do with Graetzer's growing interest in "the world of visuals rather than sounds," plus the bassist's screenprinting business seems to be taking off. Everybody's still friends though, according to Stickles:

What is the deal?" you may be asking, "Do you guys, like, hate each other now or something?" No, we don't hate each other. In fact, the months since Ian announced his departure plans (yes, the months!) have been some of the happiest and friendliest in all of our organization's history. The simple fact is that Ian is a man of multitudinous passions, a man who is full of ideas and ambitions and who is always generating plans and schemes and million dollar ideas, a man for whom the road of life is going to be long and carefully, considerately trodden, with many rewards and adventures for the picking along the way. For the past five and a half years or so, we were blessed to have the use of this brain, to be the beneficiaries of these passions and this unstoppable iron will. Ian gave more to our organization than most any band could ask of most any man, but now the time has come for him to spread the wealth around, give some of his other interests and aspirations a chance. Between his future plans (which is not for me to speak of, besides that I don't fully understand them, but I can say that they have something to do with the world of visuals rather than sounds) and his ongoing position of power and responsibility at the venerable Kingsland Printing, there just aren't going to be six months of this new year where Ian can put all of his concerns aside and sit around the van like we have always done - at this, his heart would make a mighty protest, and far be it from Titus Andronicus to make another protest at that protest. Know what I am saying?

More or less, yeah? Being in a touring band is hard, especially one as in demand as Titus Andronicus. In fact, they're already booked next month at the Mercury Lounge, playing a February 10th benefit for Willie Mae's Rock Camp for Girls, so this situation will likely be resolved sooner rather than later. Good luck to everyone involved, though it seems sad to shake up a band this good in any way--hopefully whatever ragged, zany chemistry Graetzer and Stickles nutured over the past five and half years can be replicated somehow, and quick.

Another fond farewell [Titus Andronicus]

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