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Negura Bunget drummer Gabriel ‘Negru‘ Mafa dies aged 42

Gabriel ‘Negru‘ Mafa
Gabriel \u2018Negru\u2018 Mafa

Negura Bunget drummer Gabriel ‘Negru‘ Mafa has died at the age of 42, it’s been confirmed.

The news was broken by the Romanian black metal outfit’s vocalist and guitarist Tibor Kati who has paid tribute to the musician.

Kati says in a statement: “With great grief in our souls, we inform you that our friend and colleague, Gabriel ‘Negru’ Mafa, passed today, March 21, 2017, aged 42.

“We deeply regret the death of the man who founded and maintained Negura Bunget, and who dedicated his life to the sacred side of our culture – bringing it to life through music and transmitting it to various generations from all over the world.

“We hope that his legacy will continue to enchant and console those whom he left behind.

“With regret and sadness, we offer our condolences to his family and to those who knew and cherished him in this life.”

Mafa co-founded the band in 1994 with Edmond Karban under the name Wiccan Rede. They released a demo of From Transilvanian Forests in 1995 before changing their name to Negura Bunget.

They’ve released seven albums, the most recent being 2016’s Zi – and had lined up an extensive list of North American tour dates for later this year to mark their 20th anniversary.

No cause of death has been revealed.

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Scott looks after and updates Louder’s online buyer’s guides and also scouts out the best deals for music fans from every corner of the internet. He's spent more than 28 years in newspapers and magazines as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014, where he wrote extensively about rock, metal, prog and more, before moving to the eCommerce team full-time in 2020. Scott has previous written for publications including IGN, Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to video games, travel and whisky.