Metal Frontman Exiting Band After Upcoming Tour

Steve Brooks, frontman for heavy metal journeymen Torche, has reportedly decided to exit the band after their upcoming tour. According to Metal Injection, Brooks shared the news in an Instagram post, explaining that he's found it difficult "to keep this going living on opposite sides of the country." Brooks apparently has since deleted the post, and the band hasn't mentioned the exit otherwise.

"We're a few months away from the last tour I'm doing with Torche," Brooks reportedly added in his post. "We've been so very lucky and went far beyond what I imagined. I just don't have it in me to keep this going living on opposite sides of the country. Much love to my band members and everyone that supported us these 18 years! See y'all this Sept/Oct." Torche is currently scheduled to hit the road this fall with Meshuggah, Converge, and In Flames. The bands will be hitting a number of big cities in the U.S., starting with Worcester, Massachusetts on Sept. 16. The tour will conclude its run one month later in Atlanta, Georgia on Oct. 16. 

Torche was formed in Miami, Florida in 2004 by Brooks (vocals, guitar), Juan Montoya (guitar), Jonathan Nuñez (guitar), and Rick Smith (drums). Montoya left the band in 2008, with Brooks reportedly saying, "He is an amazing guitarist, but we are just not on the same page... but Torche will still carry on as a 3 piece band." The band's current lineup consists of Brooks, Nuñez, Smith, and bassist Eric Hernandez.

To date, Torche has released five full-length albums, as well as a number of EPs and split projects. They also contributed a cover of Nirvana's "In Bloom" to Whatever Nevermind, a tribute album honoring the iconic grunge band. Torche's most recent effort was 2019's Admission, which was very well-received by fans and critics alike.

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In a review of Admission for AllMusic, journalist James Christopher Monger awarded the album 4 out of 5 stars. "Combining combustive beats and face-melting blasts of doom, sludge, and stoner metal-worthy riffs with soaring, shoegazey melodies, Admission feels both punitive and uplifting," he wrote. Monger added, "It's a stentorian call to arms that uses the sonic template set forth by bands like Earth and Sunn 0))), but tempers the acrid smoke and hellfire with clarion blasts of icy blue water."