Ten Things You Need To Know About Avenged Sevenfold's New Drummer

Avenged Sevenfold have just announced that they have a new drummer and his name is Brooks Wackerman. Never heard of him? Don’t worry, here are ten things you need to know about the new guy on the A7X drumstool!

**He Got His Start From Steve Vai
**Brooks started his musical career as a mere teenager under the tutelage of the great shredder Steve Vai, who produced his first band Bad4Good’s debut album Refugee. Released in 1992 the band split soon after, despite Vai’s thumbs up, and vocalist Danny Cooksey is the only other member to have a career of note – he’s a renowned voice over artist, and he also played John Connor’s mate in Terminator 2. Which was the coolest thing a member of Bad4Good had managed… until now!

**He’s Been A Substitute For The World’s Most Famous Drum Substitute
**You’ve all probably heard of Josh Freese. He’s the guy that has made a career of stepping up to the drum stool of many a big name rock band when they need a steady pair of hands behind the kit. Be it Nine Inch Nails, Guns N’ Roses, or A Perfect Circle, Josh has kept time for the lot of them. What you might not know is that Josh got his start with Orange County skate punks The Vandals… which we imagine doesn’t pay quite as much as temping for Trent Reznor or Axl Rose. So when Josh was away from Vandals duty at the turn of the Millennium who should step into his shows? Our very own Brooks of course!

**He’s Played In Another Legendary Punk Outfit
**In 2001 when punk pioneers Bad Religion’s legendary drummer Bobby Schayer injured his shoulder and was forced into retirement, Brooks was picked as the man to fill the boots of a man who had previously played on some of the most classic punk rock in history. No pressure then! He contributed to the last six Bad Religion releases.

He Stepped In After Travis Barker’s Fear OF Flying Got The Better Of Him
In 2013, pop-punk megastars Blink 182 were due to play the Soundwave festival in Australia. Unfortunately, due to an acute fear of flying after his infamous near death experience in a plane crash five years previously, Blink drummer Travis Barker was unable to make his way across the globe to make the shows. This left Brooks to get the best seat in the house as two grown men made jokes about having sex with livestock… listen we’ll all had shitty jobs, mate!

**He Made A Good Impression On Said Tour
**Brooks must have made quite an impression on the Blink boys on that tour, as former Blink frontman, and warbling buffoon, Tom Delonge has hired him to play drums on his solo album To The Stars.

**His Nickname Is ‘Thunderskin’, And Was Given To Him By Jack Black
**In 2012, Brooks was drummer for A-list, comedy rockers Tenacious D. The D were booked to perform on The Late Show With David Letterman, and after the performance Jack Black made a humorous reference to Brooks as ‘Thunderskin’. Which stuck with him throughout the tour.

Remember Those Guys That Used To Stand At The Back Of The Stage During Korn Shows?
Remember when Korn used to have most of their band shrouded behind a curtain? Well could Brooks have been one of their mysterious percussionists? We don’t actually know for sure, but we are aware that he did contribute percussion to their second self-titled album of 2007. So, who knows!

He’s Not Adverse To A Bit Of Pop
Well… that’s pure speculation on our part again. But he did play drums and tour with Canadian, Sk8er Boi fancier Avril Lavigne in 2004 on her Under My Skin album. Which we’re sure was really good fun…?

He Can Sing Too!
Not just confined to the drum stool, Brooks is at home in front on a microphone as well. He currently fronts the band Kidneys, alongside Tenacious D’s John Spiker and his own brother John Wackerman. They’ve released two albums so far, 2007’s Talkie Walkie and it’s follow-up Sophomore in 2012.

He’s Played With Just About Everyone
Pick a cool name from the world of rock and metal and Brooks has almost certainly shared a stage or a recording studio with them. From Mike Muir and the rest of Suicidal Tendencies, to Faith No More’s Billy Gould, to Munky from Korn’s Fear And The Nervous System side-project, to former Bleeding Through frontman Brandon Schieppati on the thrash supergroup The Innocent – Brooks is unlikely to be overawed by the challenge of drummer for Avenged. Good luck to you, Brooks!

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Stephen Hill

Since blagging his way onto the Hammer team a decade ago, Stephen has written countless features and reviews for the magazine, usually specialising in punk, hardcore and 90s metal, and still holds out the faint hope of one day getting his beloved U2 into the pages of the mag. He also regularly spouts his opinions on the Metal Hammer Podcast.