R.I.P. Reed Mullin, Corrosion of Conformity drummer dies at 53

The pioneering metal drummer founded C.O.C. in 1982

Corrosion of Conformity drummer Reed Mullin dieas
Corrosion of Conformity’s Reed Mullin, photo by Dean Karr

    Tragic news to report, as Corrosion of Conformity drummer Reed Mullin has passed away at the age of 53. No cause of death has been reported.

    The influential metal band reported the news in a tweet on Monday night, writing, “It’s with heavy hearts that we say goodbye to a friend, a brother and pioneer. Reed you are loved and always will be. Lets all take a moment…”

    Mullin founded Corrosion of Conformity in 1982 alongside bassist Mike Dean and guitarists Pepper Keenan and Woody Weatherman. C.O.C., as they were also known, unleashed their debut album, Eye for an Eye, in 1984. Starting out with a more hardcore sound, C.O.C. became pioneers of sludge and stoner metal, and have released a total of 10 studio LPs during the course of their career.


    Corrosion of Conformity underwent a number of lineup changes over the years, with Mullin leaving the group in 2001, before they eventually broke up in 2006. The trio of Mullin, Weatherman, and Dean later reunited in 2010, and were rejoined by Keenan in 2014. The band’s most recent album, 2018’s No Cross No Crown, was the first to feature the core lineup of Mullin, Weatherman, Keenan, and Dean since 2000’s America’s Volume Dealer.

    In 2016, Mullin suffered an alcohol-related seizure during the band’s show in Edmonton, Canada, but returned to the lineup just a couple days later. He missed several more shows in recent years, leading Dean to declare that Mullin wouldn’t be welcomed back to the band until he was on a healthy path.

    “He needs to take care of himself and get his shit together,” Dean told the Talk Toomey podcast. “And if that happens, the door’s open for him. And if it doesn’t, well, that’s how it is. People need to wanna help themselves. You can’t just push them to get help — they’ve gotta wanna help themselves.”


    Beyond C.O.C., Mullin and Dean started the hardcore-punk collective Teenage Time Killers in 2014, recruiting such music luminaries as Foo Fighters’ Dave Grohl, Lamb of God’s Randy Blythe, Slipknot’s Corey Taylor, and many more for their lone album, Teenage Time Killers: Greatest Hits Vol. 1.

    Reed Mullin’s death comes during a month where legendary Rush drummer Neil Peart and pioneering Cynic drummer Sean Reinert have both passed away. Our condolences go out to Mullin’s family, friends, and bandmates during this difficult time.

    This is a developing story…