Nick Hipa Confirms Exit From As I Lay Dying in Explanatory Statement
In an official statement, guitarist Nick Hipa has confirmed he has made the decision to leave As I Lay Dying, citing a desire to focus on his motion graphics career, family and health and because "the story and meaning we built our reunion upon decayed considerably over time."
Hipa, on Instagram (see post below), acknowledged he had largely withdrawn his social media presence over the last year, which prompted fans to speculate about his status within the metalcore group's ranks. "I've been trying to move on peacefully in life," he said after apologizing for his inactivity and failure to respond to those who reached out to him in recent months.
The guitarist, who joined As I Lay Dying in 2004 and first contributed to the breakthrough Shadows Are Security album, also noted, "At this point though, it has been well over a year since I have distanced myself from them on a personal and professional level."
As I Lay Dying originally split up in 2014 when vocalist Tim Lambesis was incarcerated for solicitation of another to commit murder with intentions of hiring someone to kill his estranged wife Meggan Murphy. The person he solicited was an undercover detective and he was arrested in 2013 and, in 2014, pled guilty to the charges. Although he was sentenced to six years in prison, Lambesis was released in late December of 2016.
The band reunited and, in 2018, released their first new song since reforming, followed by a tell-all video in which the members explained why they felt comfortable re-banding and addressed the elephant in the room, which was that they were now working with someone who had attempted to have someone killed.
This narrative that helped re-establish As I Lay Dying is evidently not one Hipa feels has remained intact, as outlined in his explanation for leaving the group.
"This is not an indictment on any who choose to remain or be involved [with As I Lay Dying]," he clarified before he stated, "There is tremendous good that can be accomplished through singular focus on the power of music," and cautioned, "However to my memory and recent experience, it comes at the cost of tolerating behavior which at times mistreats, disrespects, and hurts other people."
"I do not have it in me to walk that road again," Hipa lamented.
In closing, the guitarist wished his bandmates well and expressed his confidence in their ability to enjoy continued success.
See the full statement below.
I am deeply appreciative for the love, care, and concern I have been messaged with over the past year while being largely absent from social activity. My days have been occupied with a motion design career, deep focus on my family, taking care of my health, and working on other creative projects. Real life has a way of crowding out time for things like social media, so I apologize to those of you who reached out to me for answers regarding my disassociation from As I Lay Dying and never heard back. I’ve been trying to move on peacefully in life.
At this point though, it has been well over a year since I have distanced myself from them on a personal and professional level. In that time they have only given fans merchandising posts and show announcements. This sort of activity highlights and reinforces our differences.
Respectfully, I left because the story and meaning we built our reunion upon decayed considerably over time. What primarily endures is a superficial pursuit I cannot justify supporting or being part of. This is not an indictment on any who choose to remain or be involved. There is tremendous good that can be accomplished through singular focus on the power of music. However to my memory and recent experience, it comes at the cost of tolerating behavior which at times mistreats, disrespects, and hurts other people. I do not have it in me to walk that road again.
The talent and unshakeable ambition of the band is undeniable. They will continue to release successful music and do great business. On a human level, I hope everything else fares well for them.
I am grateful for the lessons I’ve learned and the incredible people I’ve been able to meet and connect with the past 17 years.
I’ll still be around.
Love to all,