Well here we go. Again.
On Halloween 2020, not only do you have the pleasure of looking forward to little asymptomatic vectors of disease gracing your stoop looking for “fun size” Snickers, you will also get the opportunity to unravel the latest obtuse riddle emanating from the headquarters of important underground country band Hellbound Glory, who for a second time is promising to kill itself off in observance of the Pagan holiday.
The vehicle for singer, songwriter, and last remaining original band member Leroy Virgil, Hellbound Glory was seminal to setting the table for the rise of independent country superstars such as Sturgill Simpson and Tyler Childers when the band first showed up in the late oughts. Often and unfairly overlooked, Leroy is considered by many to be one of the best country songwriters of this generation, and Hellbound Glory offered further evidence of this on their 2020 record released in June, Pure Scum.
But in a Thursday morning missive (10/1), Hellbound Glory says they will be celebrating the death of the band on October 31st, posting no further details, aside from a photo of Leroy Virgil in front of a distressed background similar to when we first experienced this operation back in 2014. Yes, this isn’t the first time Hellbound Glory has been sacrificed on All Saints Eve. In 2014, the same ritual went down at the Buckhorn Lodge in Pioneer, California, a couple of hours from the home base of Hellbound Glory in Reno, Nevada. There was a casket and everything.
What was the end result? Leory Virgil emerged as a solo artists named Leon Virgil Bowers—basically his real, given name. But this didn’t last very long. By the next year, he was going under Leroy Virgil again, formed a band called The eXcavators, and by 2017 when the album Pinball was released, Hellbound Glory was once again the name Leroy Virgil was using.
What’s the rationale behind all the name changes? It’s probably best chalked up to a love/hate relationship Leon Virgil has with the “Hellbound Glory” name, along with perhaps some legal entanglements that have arisen over the years. It hasn’t been easy for some to follow Leroy’s career path through all of the name changes, but those who have, they’ve been handsomely rewarded with good music.
What will rise out of the ashes of this latest sacrifice? Well that’s for Leroy Virgil to know, and the rest of us to find out on October 31st, or shortly thereafter. Whatever it is, let’s just hope it doesn’t mean the real end of Hellbound Glory, or Leroy Virgil music.
Well here we go. Again.